Creating a healthier and happier environment for our future is a team effort. We must work together by taking small steps to reduce our overall impact. The perfect place we can start is where we are most familiar, our homes!
Here are 8 easy ways you can make your home more eco-friendly this Earth Day.
1. Install a Programmable Thermostat
This step is a simple idea that can have huge payoffs for both the earth and your wallet. Win win! It can be so easy to forget to turn off your AC/heat when you leave the house, especially when you’ve got other things on your mind. However with a programmable thermostat you can ensure that none of that precious energy goes to waste.
There are many different models that allow you to regulate your home’s temperature based on the settings you create. We’d recommend getting a model that works with your phone for easy temperature control anywhere.
2. Change Your Light Bulbs
Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are much more energy efficient and last much longer than traditional bulbs. Light the path to lower electricity bills by replacing your bulbs with CFLs or LEDs.
3. Seal Air Leaks
You’d be surprised how much air can leak through cracks in window seals, doors, and other areas in your home, making it much harder for your HVAC unit to regulate the temperature in your home, costing you money, and wasting energy. Take the time to find air leaks in your home. Plug with weather stripping around doors and caulk around windows to save money and energy.
4. Invest in Energy Efficient Appliances
When it’s time to shop for a new appliance look to see if it’s certified by Energy Star. Energy Star ensures its approved appliances operate at high levels of energy efficiency. You can also ask you electricity provider if it offers incentives for replacing old appliances with more energy efficient ones.
5. Reduce Water Use
Start with something as simple as timing how long you shower for. Ask yourself if you really needed that much time. You can make your bathrooms even more eco-friendly by installing aerators on sinks and low-flow shower heads as well.
Outside, you can save water by planting native plants. Species of plants that are native to your area usually require less watering, fertilizer, and pesticides.
6. Explore Solar Energy
Solar paneling is becoming more and more popular with homeowners. Panels allow for the sun’s energy to be captured for electrical use in your home. Switching to solar energy is a huge step to reducing our carbon output and preventing further damage to our atmosphere. This is perhaps the most important step you can take as a homeowner to lessen your home’s environmental impact.
7. Use Natural Cleaning Products
Traditional cleaning products and paints often emit VOCs (volatile organic compounds). VOCs can cause headaches, nausea, and irritation to the respiratory system, skin, and eyes, among other ailments. Try to use natural products and products without VOCs which are becoming more available.
8. Create a Compost Bin
Save your garden and the environment with this tip. Food waste sitting in landfills creates methane (a greenhouse gas) which is damaging to our atmosphere. Collect food scraps (except meat) in a backyard composting bin and use it as a fertilizer for your garden or lawn.