Five Tips for a More Sustainable Home
What do you need to do to create a more sustainable home? Thankfully it doesn't mean you have to change your lifestyle completely (and you don't have to get rid of your television!) By simply altering a few of your everyday habits to be more environmentally conscious and save some money, you can go a little green yourself. If you're new to sustainable living or you just want to test the water, try these steps.
Tweak Your Tank
There are many ways you can go about conserving water, such as cutting your shower time down, switching to a low-flow shower head and hand-washing dirty dishes. Another unusual tip to reduce water use is to place a large bottle (think the size of a 2-liter) in your toilet tank. This will reduces the amount of room for water needed for the tank to refill, thus using less water per flush. This water saving tactic originally calls for a brick, but there are many reasons alternative objects are better for this water saving technique.
Don't be Afraid of the Dark
Ok, so you probably don't want to keep your lights off all of the time, but limiting the amount of lighting you use can be a great way to save energy and money on electric bills. Taking small steps like opening blinds and allowing natural light to come in during the day instead of using lights. Turning off lights in rooms that aren't occupied can make a big difference over time as well.
Not using that coffeepot? Unplug it! When your appliances aren't in use they are still using energy. By unplugging them or using a green power strip you can save on energy costs. Minor changes like switching to compact fluorescent light bulbs can help you save as well. Some electricity providers even offer an option to switch to renewable energy sources.
Limit Landfill Contributions
You can limit your carbon footprint while saving money by cutting back on the amount of waste you create. Ditch dryer sheets and use a ball of aluminum foil instead. You'll save money using foil instead of dryer sheets and it does an equally good job eliminating static from clothes. One big way to cut back on waste is to commit to cutting bottled water out of your life. According to UCLA sustainability article only about 20 percent of plastic bottles are recycled. By using a filter at home and investing in a nice reusable water bottle you can save money and eliminate the risk of the plastic bottles you use ending up in the trash. You can also help mitigate landfill waste by investing in products from reclaimed materials.
By donating your unused clothes, books or magazines you're not only doing good for your community but you're cutting down on the amount that you throw out. Plus there's the added benefit of a clutter free home! If you can't part with some of your old things, consider using old shirts as cleaning cloths or sharing books and magazines with friends.
There are many unique and manageable ways to go green in your home and save money. Do some research or get creative to discover more opportunities like these and share them in the comments below!
Brittney Sheffield is a writer for Systrum Energy, which offers low cost electric supply rates for residential, commercial and industrial electric needs in New Jersey.
Image via phototouring