Modern luxuries have made us take our resources for granted. When our number one priority was survival, we made the most of every resource we had. Now that we live comfortably, natural resources like water, electricity, paper, and even food seem disposable.
However, it’s still important not to waste our resources in this age of luxury. Excess waste can have negative effects on the environment and your wallet. Similarly, it’s important to make your home as energy efficient as possible.
Making your home eco-friendly is more important now than ever. As people are becoming more environmentally aware, transforming your home to become more energy efficient is easy. Here are a few ways you cut down waste and use less energy in your home:
1. Turn off the lights
Your dad is right; you need to turn off the lights when you’re not using them. It won’t just save your family or business money; it also cuts down on waste and helps the environment.
even need to remember to do it yourself anymore. Smart lighting technology can turn lights on and off, depending on many factors. You can set them on a schedule or connect them to motion sensors.
Pair your smart fixtures with highly efficient LED bulbs, and you’ll have optimal lighting to save you money and help the environment. At the very least, just make sure you’re turning off lights you aren’t using.
Prime Electrical Services, an electrician in Cherry Hill, NJ, says, “Turn off your lights if you’re going to be out of the room for 15 minutes or more. This is called the 15-minute rule. Just because an LED bulb is much more efficient doesn’t mean you should leave them on 24/7.”
2. Optimize your kitchen appliances
Your kitchen is a great area to cut down on waste, especially energy waste. The best thing you can do is switch from oil or gas appliances to electric appliances.
Renewable energy relies on creating electricity, and renewable energy is the future. Swap out the old gas oven and stove for a new, electric one. Using electricity instead will save you money and help cut down on CO2 emissions.
The rest of your appliances should already be electric. Your refrigerator should be set between 35 and 38 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything cooler is unnecessary for refrigerator-safe foods.
Setting it in this temperature range will save you money on electricity and make your fridge last longer. Working harder means more wear and tear. If the food needs to be cooler than 35 degrees Fahrenheit, it should be put in the freezer anyway.
And you should stuff your freezer as much as possible. Having as little empty space as possible is optimal because it keeps cool air from escaping when you open the door. This isn’t as important for the refrigerator because it isn’t as cold, but a freezer has to work harder and use more energy.
It’s commonly known that you shouldn’t run the dishwasher unless it’s full for maximum efficiency, but you can make it even more efficient. If you’re still heating your water with a gas or oil heater, you should consider switching to an electric water heater.
Gas and oil water heaters waste a lot of energy keeping the water in the tank hot. They aren’t insulated as well as electric heaters, so a lot of that heat escapes while it sits in the tank.
There are even point-of-use water heaters available that only heat the water you need when you need it. This is the most efficient option but moving away from oil and gas is plenty efficient on its own.
3. Install a smart thermostat
A smart thermostat is an investment worth making. Smart thermostats give you the ability to control the temperature of your home from a smart device in remote locations.
When dealing with heating or cooling systems, a homeowner has to decide if he or she wants to keep either system running when he or she isn't’ home. Turning off a heating system when the resident isn’t home during the cold months of the winter can make a home uncomfortably cold upon arrival home. The same is true for turning off a cooling system in the summer. On the other hand, running either system when the resident isn’t home can cost him or her more money as well as wasting energy.
This issue can be solved by installing a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats can heat or cool a home upon arrival without having to be left on all day wasting energy. These thermostats will make your home more energy efficient in a convenient and simple way.
4. Start a compost pile
Most people don’t eat banana peels and carrot greens. But instead of throwing them in the trash, you can add them to a compost pile so they can be returned to the earth and help things grow near you.
You don’t need to have a garden to use compost. Any plant life will benefit from the humus that’s created from compost. Give it to trees and bushes nearby or use it to patch holes in your lawn. If the grass isn’t growing somewhere, it’s probably because of a lack of nutrients. Just make sure you don’t put it somewhere the smell will bother someone.
5. Invest in a window treatment
Window treatments are a great way to make your home more energy efficient because they focus on keeping rooms warm in the winter and rooms cool in the summer. The way window treatments, specifically cellular shades, do this is by using cell pockets to trap air around your windows, blocking any air from getting in or out; this will allow you to run your heating or cooling systems less because heat/air conditioning will not be lost.
Another great window treatment option that will make your home energy efficient is roller shades. Roller shades are designed with side channels to get rid of gaps between the shade and the windowsill. They reduce solar transmittance and increase solar reflectance; this means that they are not only reducing sun glare, but they are also reducing the amount of heat that can come into a room. Reducing the amount of heat that comes into a room will allow you to run your cooling system less, therefore, reducing energy.
6. Switch to LED bulbs
Switching to LED bulbs will allow you to reduce waste and energy use in your home. LED bulbs are growing in popularity because not only do they last 80% longer than fluorescent and incandescent bulbs, they also use ⅓ of the energy. Additionally, LED bulbs convert 95% of the energy they use into light, wasting only 5% as heat. LED bulbs can be installed in almost any lighting fixture, making them a quick and easy way to make your home more energy efficient.
Because of their long lifespan, LED bulbs will create less waste because of how infrequently they have to be replaced.
Make your home more sustainable
Making your home more sustainable can be simple and with minimal effort, you can do this by cutting down waste and reducing the amount of energy you use. Keep these tips in mind in order to begin switching your home into an eco-friendly environment.