Antique homes are a sight to behold. There's a distinct area of my town with a number of early 1920's style homes that still stand tall today. The wrap-around porches. Big, brawny interior. Solid oak flooring with that piercing creak as you walk. High ceilings. Shudders covering the windows. The list goes on.
But what most antique homes – and many modern homes – lack is a fundamentally sound, energy efficient setup. There's the thin window panes, or the less-than-desirable air circulation. As the home ages, there may be small, subtle cracks in the duct work, or gaps in the attic for air that interfere with temperature control throughout the home.
Remodeling your home to be as energy efficient as possible obviously aids the homeowner in a number of ways. But determining which areas of the home need the most patchwork, regardless of whether you're trying to update a historic home or modern one, is key. From adding more insulation to replacing windows on down to regularly changing out air filters around the house, here are ways to survey and tackle your home's energy efficiency the right way. ... read more
Especially with the bad economy we're facing, it is important to cut down on costs. One big bill for most families is the energy usage bill. Many families struggle to pay for electricity and costs related to keeping their homes warm. In this article you'll learn ways to cut down your energy usage expenses.
#1 Contact Power Company
Sometimes help comes in the most unexpected places. One way you can save on your energy usage expenses is to get an energy audit completed by your power company. You may be surprised at the suggestions they come up with that could save you money on your bill.... read more
If you’ve ever been on the hosting end for parties or overnight houseguests, you know that opening your home to guests is a great act of warmth and generosity. This year, try acknowledging the gift of a cozy bed and wonderful company with an eco-savvy hostess present that shows how much you appreciate being welcomed into someone’s home. Hey, think of all the money you’re saving in hotel costs!
Emily Anderson, author of Eco Chic Home, recommends giving gifts that are thoughtful -- without being showy. “When I give a hostess gift, I want it to be a nice gesture of appreciation, but not something over-the-top,” she says. “I’m also sure to think of something that my hosts will put to good use.”
While a bottle of (organic) wine or a pretty (soy-based) candle are classic options, Anderson also likes exercising a bit of creativity in her gift-giving. The results are meaningful and earth-friendly:... read more
'Tis the season to start Christmas shopping! There are plenty of ways to keep your holiday shopping green, but how can you wrap your gifts in a festive way that is also eco-friendly?
A lot of times typical wrapping paper is not recyclable, especially if it has tape on it, so be aware of that before wrapping your gifts in that. There are lots of recycled and sustainable giftwrap options out there, so if you like the traditional look of wrapping paper, go that route! ... read more
So, you’ve successfully changed the toner cartridges in your printer – What’s next? It seems wasteful to throw them out. In fact, it can be dangerous to do so since any remaining ink is thought of as chemical waste that can contaminate soil and water. And, considering that these cartridges are thrown out at a rate of 500 per minute, they are consuming a lot of landfill space. But throwing old toner cartridges in the garbage is not the only option. This article will provide tips for anyone who wants to learn more about how to recycle toner cartridges.... read more
One of my favorite wintertime treats are clementines. The sweet satisfaction of eating candy with the nutrition of oranges. YUM!
Clementines often come in wooden crates. I hate to just throw out a nice wooden crate...it seems so wasteful, especially considering how many ways you can upcycle clementine crates! Make sure to remove any staples from the boxes, especially if your children are going to be using them. ... read more
Now more than ever, we are aware of eco-friendly ways to look after our homes; from recycling our waste efficiently, to choosing cleaning products with a minimum amount of chemicals. However, eco-friendly gardening methods are arguably not as well known. Eco-friendly gardening takes a little bit more effort than traditional gardening, however the payoff is worth it as you are not only helping your garden to prosper; you are helping the environment. Here are some simple tips to get you started.
Many people don’t realize that traditional commercial soil is made from a non-renewable resource. Peat is the main component of this sort of soil, but it is only grown in certain parts of the world and once it has been harvested it is extremely difficult to grow back. Peat has been harvested so much because not only it is a great material for cultivating plants; it’s also used as a source of energy. However, for your garden there alternative prod ucts you can use to help your plants grow. Coconut coir is a natural byproduct of the coconut industry and it currently isn’t used as a fuel or food so there is an abundance of it. It promotes plant health and will prevent the coir from being wasted. Next time you’re looking for soil or fertilizer for your garden, see what alternatives are available for you go straight for the traditional products.... read more
You might be wondering what the most eco-friendly solution is in terms of buying a Christmas tree. Is buying a real Christmas tree bad for the environment? Or what about the fake ones? What are your options to keep your Christmas tree, well, green?... read more
If you are re-designing your kitchen or having a new kitchen built, you may want the kitchen to be as green and cost efficient as possible. With technology fast advancing and more and more people looking to live greener it is getting a lot easier to do so. Here are a few ways to make your new kitchen greener.
It’s 2012 and halogen lights are fast becoming something of the past. With LED lighting fast advancing and becoming cheaper to the general user, right now is the time to switch to LED lighting! Halogen lighting may be initially cheaper to purchase than LED lighting but the low energy consumption and long life will certainly pay you back several times over. It is estimated that by switching to LED light bulbs from halogen bulbs you will get your return within 3 years and anything after that is pure saving! LED light bulbs use as little as 10% energy of that of halogen light bulbs, making them ideal if you are looking to live green. LED light bulbs can last up to 15 years continuous use. There are many different types of LED lighting you can use to save energy from LED light bulbs to LED Tape.... read more
Now that winter has reared its ugly head, it’s everyone’s mission to keep as warm as possible!
With heaters on full blast around the clock, it’s no wonder that household bills skyrocket at this time of year. According to ABC, The average American household will pay $992 in heating costs this winter, which is $94 higher than last year. This is because of a recent hike in oil prices.
As well as saving some money by keeping more heat inside, you’ll stop harmful greenhouse gasses from escaping into the atmosphere and adding to global warming.
It makes sense to try and keep as much heat in the house as possible. Our guide is here to help!
INSTALL ATTIC INSULATION
Most of the heat lost in your house is escaping through the roof. It can be quite expensive to have your attic insulated, but the long term benefits make the cost worthwhile. Make sure that you research a few firms before you make your decision, or ask friends and relatives who they have used to carry out the work.... read more