Everyone can do something to make their home more eco-friendly and, as a bonus, more efficient and affordable. Here are some simple tips to green your home:
1. Keep your home well insulated: Make sure that your home is as well insulated as possible. If possible, have Energy Star rated windows. Don’t leave doors or windows open when the heater or air conditioner is running.
2. Only run your heater and air conditioner when necessary: Become more comfortable using fans, windows, and thermal curtains. Optimize the use of fans to move air throughout your living spaces. Just nudging your thermostat two degrees (up in the summer, down in the winter) can have a huge impact on your energy usage.
3. Invest in a programmable thermostat: This can help regulate your home’s temperature, keeping you comfortable when you’re there, and using less energy when you aren’t.
4. Green your décor: Check that all the vents in your rooms are clear of furniture. Keep lamps and televisions away from your thermostat, so that the thermostat doesn’t get a false idea of what the temperature in your house. Also, putting lamps in the corners of the room can light up the room better than a brighter light in the middle of the room, since light reflects off the walls. Use this to cut down on the amount of energy you spend lighting your home.
5. Use Energy-Star appliances: Appliances are some of the biggest drains on a home’s energy budget. Make sure you only have what you need. Sometimes skipping the use of an appliance helps. For instance, using a crock-pot or microwave instead of an oven (especially in the summer), and drying clothes on a rack or a clothesline rather than in a dryer can boost your home’s energy performance.
6. Replace old-fashioned incandescent bulbs with newer CFLs or LEDs: This alone can reduce your energy usage dramatically. Turn off lights in rooms that aren’t in use.
7. Don’t pay for electricity you’re not using: Unplug appliances and electronics when they’re not in use. Only plug in and charge devices when they need it. Once you plug in a small appliance, use it right away, then unplug it immediately to avoid wasting energy.
8. Use cold water for your laundry: For most clothes, cold water is sufficient to clean them. Using cold water decreases your energy expenditure, and can help your clothes stay bright and fresh longer.
9. Switch to clean energy sources: Once you have decreased your energy usage as much as possible, make sure the rest of the energy comes from clean, green sources. Sign up for CleanChoice Energy today.