Could you do a little more for the environment? If so, then your home is the perfect starting point. There are plenty of ways that you can embrace green issues, and doing so will give you a lot of satisfaction – and save you a lot of money! So, if you want a piece of that pie, read on. I’m going to share some simple tips and ways of making sure you are reducing your carbon footprint. Ready to get started? Then let’s take a closer look.
Insulation is a big factor when it comes to greenifying your home. It’s traps heat in, helps keep the cold out, and will save you money in the long-term. In fact, it’s fair to say that if you don’t have insulation in your home, you might as well burn your money when it gets to this time of year. Take a look in your loft space, and make sure that you have enough insulation wool lining your ceilings. You may have asbestos filler up there, in which case you will need to have it removed by a professional. It’s also possible to have your cavity walls insulated. Although heat rises, this is another way to ensure that your home stays nice and toasty and that you keep your heating bills as low as possible.
While you are up in your attic, it’s a good idea to take a look at your roof. Are there any drafts coming through? If so, it could indicate that you have a tile or two missing, or that there is a hole somewhere. Of course, doing work up there yourself can be incredibly dangerous, and there have been many people that have lost their lives from a slip. So, get an expert in to check and repair anything if you want to restore your roof, rather than risk it yourself. Once all those holes are fixed, you’ll find that your home retains a lot more heat.
If you are having major work done on your roof, have a think about the possibility of installing solar panels, too. It’s a perfect time, after all! Sure, solar panels can cost a significant sum. But, on average, you can expect to repay the investment within five years, thanks to far lower heating bills. As far as investments, go, that’s not bad at all. Plus, you have to bear in mind that not only will solar power help you save money, but it will also make you money! If your system generates more electricity than you use, your utility company will take it and send it back into the system. And, they will pay you for the pleasure. Not only that but solar power also increase your home’s value. So, even if you use a lot of electricity, you should still get what you paid when you decide to sell up and move on.
Windows and doors
Your windows and doors are yet another route for heat to escape, and cold gusts of wind to come into your home. Door and window frames will start to bend out of shape over time, and any little hole or kink can cause a draft issues. Take a look around your local area for a reputable company to come and fix them. Think about double glazing – or triple glazing if you live in a noisy area. And, make sure that your doors have cushions all around the frame, to seal off any gaps. There are little things you can do, too, such as using draft excluders. They might be cheap, but they work a treat!
The next thing to look at is your light bulbs. If your home is still using old-style bulbs, then think about changing them for more eco-friendly options. There are plenty out there, and they all offer a longer lifespan than standard bulbs. Fluro bulbs, LED lighting – they all use far less electricity and will last many more years. There are halogen lights, too, although they tend to get hot. So, keep them up high and away from the kids.
Another great way of saving energy around the home is to make sure that everything works correctly. The major cost savings are from your heating and air conditioning systems. Unless your system is working correctly, it will be wasting your energy, and, by association, money. So, the small price for maintenance insurance or warranties is worthwhile, even if your gear never breaks. Keeping your heating and aircon in tip top condition will help you save a significant sum in gas and electricity bills.
Your kitchen white goods also need looking at to make sure that they are in working order. Fridges and freezers can be one of the biggest problems, so it’s wise to keep your ear open for strange humming and noises. It’s a sign that your fridge freezer is overworked, and this means it eats up more energy. Never fill your fridge more than two-thirds full, and keep your freezer in a similar fashion.
Little tips for big savings
Of course, there is a lot you can do around the house to save energy, too. And, although each of them seems insignificant on their own, you will find that they soon add up! Start by making sure everyone in the house is turning off their lights every time they leave the room. Stop leaving things like your TV and stereo system on standby, too – because they are just wasting power. Cooking is also a big energy drain that can cost you a lot of money – and it can be much cheaper to heat a meal up in a microwave, rather than to cook it on a stove.
So, there you have it. Some simple home improvements to make, and a lot of maintenance to consider. All of these are worth doing and can have a significant impact on your utility bills, even if you do just one of them. But if you can slowly get around to each of them? There are unbelievable savings to make. Not only will you be helping save the planet, but you’ll also save a fortune!