Concerns about the environment and sustainable living have become hot topics. New homes are built with the environment in mind, with insulation and double glazing more and more often.
For older properties, though, it is not always easy to implement such changes, financially or practically.
Those in the rental property can especially be limited by what the landlord agrees to do.
If you’ve been wondering what small steps can reduce carbon footprint and make your home more environmentally friendly, here are some simple changes to get started today.
Use only what you need.
Having a sustainable home doesn’t have to cost you any money at all. In fact, you can save some dollars by being environmentally friendly and only by using energy where you really need it.
Start remembering to turn off the lights when you leave the room.
In places where you have many lighting options, such as lamps, think about whether they all need to be turned on at the same time.
After boiling the kettle, just fill it, which you actually intend to use to save energy and water.
If you have a garden, collect rainwater for plants rather than turning on the tap.
An easy way to be effective is simply to turn off things when you are not using them, such as lights when leaving the room or TV when the program ends.
There are many options available now. LED bulbs, for example, are good for energy bills and last longer than some traditional varieties.
Many electronics products now have environmentally friendly, low power options, so don’t replace old components with the first thing you find.
Water-saving faucets and overhead showers are now widely available without putting pressure.
Reuse and recycling.
Whether a new element uses energy at home, much will be used in its production and shipment. Re-homing unwanted second-hand items, cuts carbon emissions. You can pick up products for little or no cost on one of the many websites now dedicated to helping sellers pass their unnecessary items. If you can’t find what you’re looking for online, try selling garage and second-hand stores as well. Of course, this can include many items at home, including second-hand clothing, reusable water bottles and cups of coffee, as well as sourcing of locally grown products.
Walk around the house and see where the cold air is getting in.Walk around the house and see where the cold air is getting in. Obvious faults are windows and cracks under the doors. An open fireplace can be another problem area. Keeping the cold air outside can be as simple as a door seal design and a well-equipped door above the fireplace when not in use.For Windows, you should consider DIY plastic film that works like double glazing. While plastic is not good for the environment, depending on the local climate, you may be able to leave it all year round.
If you can’t, some buyers have reported that they used the same sheets year-on-year, storing them carefully in the warmer months. An alternative is to invest in some thicker curtains for the winter to keep the warm air inside.
If you need to clean the air or get rid of some wet areas, you don’t always have to increase energy consumption or invest in chemical products to solve the problem.
Bring plants home to clean the air naturally. Some plants are excellent at clearing toxins from the air to improve overall quality. Cheap to buy and quite look, plants are much more friendly than other electronic devices. Some plants are better cleaners than others, so do some research before heading to the center of the garden.
For wet issues, look at options such as using salt to draw moisture out of the air naturally. Some varieties can be dried and reused, while others must be replaced. Just be careful how to get rid of salt water, the plants will not thank you for watering them with it.
Solar energy is now great news, but investing in roof panels is not practical for everyone. There are smaller solar activities that you can take instead. If you spend time outdoors, follow ecological garden trends by trying solar powered patios and path lighting instead of mains power. Some cell phones can be charged by solar-powered charging packages now, so see what else you can switch.