Think your home is eco-friendly already? Think again! Even though you control your home, there are many things you can do to make it a more eco-friendly space for yourself and others. Taking the initiative to make your home greener is important; because not only will you be contributing to the good cause of conserving our natural resources, but the changes you make might even save money for yourself in the long run. Here are some ways in which you can start making your house into a green haven:
- Go solar
Your household can go green by investing in renewable energy technology. Most households are on a grid powered by fossil fuels. Oil and gas are not sustainable energy sources. A solar generator utilizes the sun’s rays for power. This electricity is clean and eco-friendly, and will save you money over the long run!
- Use cold water to wash your clothes
Up to 90% of the energy used by a washing machine goes toward heating water, according to Energy Star. If you would like to see your colorful clothes stay fresh and look their best then try washing them on the cold water setting if possible. Hot water can ruin fabric and dull your bright colors. Plus it wastes energy, which is worse for the environment than using cold water.
Unless you’re dealing with stubborn stains like oil stains, there really isn’t a point in opting for hot water. If you feel that cold water settings doesn’t do a thorough enough job, then just go with warm water instead! It’s still better than your hottest setting and also uses less energy for cleaning and washing your clothes.
- Dry your clothes outside
During sunny and hot months, it’s almost a shame to not hang your clothes outside to dry in the fresh air. There is something special about hanging your clothes outside so that the sun can do its magic. Clothes dried this way last longer than those dried in the dryer because they’re given more time out of the moisture cycle. If you don’t have a garden or backyard garden where you can hang your clothes, you can install an outside drying rack on balcony or terrace and let your open windows act as air vents so your scent can dry faster!
- Make the change to LED lightbulbs
Switching from incandescent bulbs to LED bulbs is a great change to start – you’ll save on power and money, as well as do your part for the environment! Some people might think that incandescent light bulbs are more attractive, but they burn out quicker, consume more energy and just don’t compare to what LED lighting can offer. There’s not much of a downside, so if anyone tells you otherwise you can explain it to them and give them a lightbulb moment!
- Reach for the thermostat
Cut your consumption of energy and save money by installing a smart thermostat. This piece of tech will alert you when you’re heating or cooling your living space. It is a convenient way to stay green and have constant control over your consumption of electricity.
- Get composting!
If you own a recycle bin, you may be more tempted to recycle glass bottles and jars and other items that should be recycled. It also makes sense for those who aren’t recycling as often as they should. Making compost is another great way to reduce your household waste if you’re into gardening or farming. These days there are many places that offer bins that are attractive and easy to use as well as odorless! This is such a wonderful idea as previously compost was not so “pretty.”
- Pull those curtains
Curtains are not just for keeping nosy neighbors away. They are also there to keep heat and cool air outside. Although it might seem impossible, heat can still creep in through your windows when they are closed. If you don’t have a big tree to protect your home from the summer sun, your home can feel like an oven! The easiest way to let in light but block out the heat during hot weather is to invest in quality curtains or shades that work well with your existing decor. Finally, remember that using the AC all day every day is not exactly eco-friendly – so try using open windows whenever possible!
- Your toast!
Many people try to save money by using their ovens to toast bread instead of buying a toaster. However, the oven consumes much more energy than the toaster and it is not ideal for preparing just two slices of bread. The toaster saves energy and time without compromising on quality. Speaking about ovens, please always make sure that you check your oven door before starting to bake or cook something; it can be unsafe if the door is open. Leaving the door open leads to an excess amount of heat loss which wasted precious energy and money!
- Use a filter, don’t be a land-filler
At home, you can install an under the sink water filter so that all the water you need is easily accessible right where you need it. It’s easy to stay environmentally friendly with a whole house system or by using filtered pitchers. There is even a handy countertop option if convenience is what’s most important to you! No matter which option you choose, one thing is certain – reduced plastic usage will leave less of a carbon footprint.
- Use Eco-Friendly cleaning products
A lot of mainstream cleaning products contain harmful, unnatural chemicals. By switching to eco-friendly or biodegradable brands that are cruelty free and do not contaminate the environment nor its inhabitants, you can keep our planet healthy. If you plan on having children one day it’s very important that you create a clean home for them to grow up in. It may seem hard to do now but it will be worth it in the end if your child hasn’t been subject to any harm or allergens because of your busy lifestyle or lack of awareness.
- Eat less Meat
Meat and dairy are responsible for the majority of emissions in our food industry. Greenhouse emissions occur during the environment-damaging processes of production, processing, packaging, and serving meat-based foods to the public.
Reducing the amount of meat and dairy you eat is a great way to not only reduce your own personal greenhouse gas emissions, but to have a positive impact on the environment at large.
As well as the ones listed above, there are many other ways to make your home more eco-friendly. There is no one rule that works for everyone; try to find the right mix of solutions for your home and family.
About The Author: Leo G Dickson is the owner of Practically Green, and a fervent supporter of sustainable practices. Through Leo and the team’s work on Practically Green, we hope to enable normal folks to make more sustainable choices in their lives.
Photo by Alena Koval from Pexels
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