Many people are becoming more aware of their impact on the environment and so they choose to live more sustainably. Living a sustainable life can help you to be more conscious of resources while also avoiding excessive waste. Here are a few ways you can make your home more sustainable.
Switch to Renewable Energy
One of the main goals of sustainable living is to reduce your carbon footprint. A major way of doing this is moving away from carbon-based energy sources. There are many alternative sources of energy that can be used, including solar, wind, hydropower, and thermal energy. One easy way to switch to renewable sources is to contact your current provider to see if they have renewable energy sources available. If they do, it may be more expensive but absolutely worth it!
You can also set up these sources in your home. One common practice is adding solar panels to your roof. If you are lucky enough to have a stream or river in your backyard, you can set up a small water mill to collect hydropower. You can even include a windmill in your yard. However, before you move forward with any of these practices, check your local zoning laws to see what is permitted.
Use Efficient Light Bulbs
An easy step for making your home more sustainable is switching to energy efficient light bulbs. These efficient light bulbs are far more beneficial than traditional incandescent bulbs. First of all, they use less energy. A traditional bulb can use around 60 watts of electricity while an LED light bulb can use as little as 6 watts of electricity. Energy efficient bulbs also last longer and produce less heat. All in all, energy efficient light bulbs are just a better deal and they help you live more sustainably.
Insulate Walls and Attic
Insulation helps to moderate the temperature in your home. It keeps the house cool in the summer and warm in the winter. With proper insulation, you won’t need to crank the thermostat. Insulating your walls is a great first step, but don’t forget the attic. Many people think that because the attic isn’t used very often it doesn’t need to be insulated. However, an uninsulated attic can be the main source of hot/cold air in your home. Make sure your home is properly insulated in order to save money and resources.
Replace Windows and Doors
Upgrading your doors and windows to more efficient models is an important step to creating a more sustainable home. There are numerous benefits to efficient windows and doors. Replacing your doors and windows can help you to save money as well as use the energy in your home better. For your windows, choose frames that will help insulate your house to keep out cold and hot air. You can also choose to get double paned glass to help insulate. These windows also help to dampen sound. As far as doors, a wood door might seem aesthetically pleasing, but it doesn’t do much in the way of efficiency. Consider a steel or fiberglass door with built in insulation. Making these changes to your home will help you to save and better use energy.
Use Water Saving Appliances
There is a large amount of water waste in homes. However, there are appliances you can install in your home that will help you to conserve water. For example, you can install low-flow shower heads and faucets. These appliances use less water but still maintain your water pressure. You can save gallons of water per shower!
Toilets are another area to tackle since they are one of the main culprits of water waste. Consider installing a dual flush toilet. This toilet uses less water for liquid waste and more for solid waste. You can also add a tank bag. The bag takes up space in your toilet tank so that it fills with less water. There are also other methods you can use to displace the water such as placing a brick in the tank. Shop around for other appliances or methods you can use in your home to reduce water waste.
Part of lowering your impact on the environment is reducing your waste. Think of all the things you would typically throw in the garbage. Could they be used again? Start actively recycling instead of just tossing everything. Recycling paper, plastic, glass, cans and more means that these materials can be cleaned and used again to make more goods. Because of this process, there is a lower need for new materials to be used.
Repurpose Instead of Buying New
It’s common for people to want to buy something new rather than make something old work. If they need a new bedside table, they’ll go out and get one instead of finding something suitable around their home. However, the more people buy the more producers will need to harvest new materials. Instead of buying new items all the time you can repurpose the items already in your home. For example, you can take an old ladder and make it into a bookshelf to hang on the wall. What about that bedside table? You can take an old chair and paint it or recover it and that’ll work just fine. There are lots of ways you can decorate your house through repurposing. You can also frequent yard sales and antique stores instead of buying new items.
Composting can be an excellent source of waste reduction. It uses all organic materials that you would normally throw away. This includes fruit and vegetable scraps such as peels, leaves, stems, and ends. You can also use waste from your garden such as lawn clippings, dead leaves, or plants. In the presence of moisture, oxygen, and microorganisms, these organic materials begin to decay and they make great fertilizer for your yard. This is an added bonus of composting because while you reduce waste you also remove the need to purchase fertilizer from the store. Even if you’re a beginner, composting can be a simple process with plenty of benefits.
Creating a sustainable home starts with making a few small changes around the house and building up to larger ones. It’s a process and a way of living and it can help you have a better peace of mind about your impact on the planet.
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