Household Tips for Going Green

recycle_480Another Earth Day is almost here, and we want to make sure you’re ready to celebrate. Earth Day was created back in 1970 in an effort to get more people to do their part in protecting the planet, and today, this endeavor is more important than ever. So to help you participate this April 22, here are some great household tips for greener living.

Reduce Your Energy Use

Use natural cooling methods: Trees are your best friends when it comes to a green planet, and for more reasons than you might think. For example, did you know that you can plant trees strategically along west and east walls of your house to keep out the hottest and most direct light from the sun? This natural shade will help keep your home cooler, which means you can turn down the air conditioning, further reduce your carbon footprint, and save money.

Switch to energy-efficient products: Most of the powered devices, electronics, and appliances that are available today are available in energy-efficient models that use a fraction of the power required by their older counterparts. You can, therefore, cut your energy use and bills by switching to energy-efficient models for:

  • Lights (opt for LEDs or CFLs)
  • Air conditioners
  • Furnaces
  • Tankless water heaters
  • Duct wrap

adjust-the-thermostat_480Adjust the thermostat: Want to save 10 percent on your energy bills with one simple trick? Of course, you do, and here’s how: invest in a programmable thermostat, and set it so that when nobody’s home during the day, the temperature of the house goes up by 10 F in summer or down by 10 F in winter. And the great thing about programmable is that you can have the temperature return to its normal comfortable state before anybody gets home, so nobody will ever even notice.

Close the flue: The chimney flue is a huge hole in your house that allows air to pass easily in and out of your home, and this means you’re spending more on heating and cooling costs than you should be. When you’re not having a fire, close the flue off to prevent this. When you stop using the fireplace for the season, close the flue and seal it for even bigger savings.

Opt for solar: Solar is a great renewable alternative to fossil fuel energies, and there are a number of appliances you can buy today that are solar-powered. When your fridge or deep freezer die, for instance, you can replace them with units that are fully solar.

Similarly, you can also buy solar device chargers and other small solar-powered gadgets for around the house. And if you’re looking for a more comprehensive solution, consider a plug-and-play system or solar panels for the house that can provide your entire home with energy from the sun.
Take Steps to Lower Your Carbon Footprint

All of the steps discussed above will help you to reduce your carbon footprint, but there are also other things you can do to lessen your reliance on fossil fuels. One of the biggest is leaving the car at home and biking or walking to get around the city instead. You can also stay away from plastic products, avoid buying overly packaged consumer items and eat less meat even one day a week.