Homeowners can take their part in helping lessen the impact of human beings on the environment. Even if your home is not already environmentally friendly, you can make it greener through some fun remodeling projects. All it takes is some critical thinking and elbow grease. Here is a helpful tip list on remodeling while conserving energy.
1. Only Use Reclaimed Wood
Trees are a precious resource. They recyle carbon dioxide and provide habitats for wild animals. Unfortunately, the construction and remodeling of homes causes the destruction of countless trees every year.
One way you can help is by only implementing reclaimed wood in your remodeling projects. Reclaimed wood is wood that has already been used in other buildings that were subsequently torn down. The use of reclaimed wood does not require the chopping down of more trees.
2. Use a Solar Based Design Philosophy
You don’t necessarily need to install solar panels on your roof to take advantage of the power of the sun in your newly remodeled home. Installing large windows in strategic locations can also do the trick of providing a natural light source as well as heating during certain hours of the day.
3. Seal Up Your Home
This one may seem a bit obvious. However, air gaps can certainly cause a homeowner to spend a lot more money on heating during the winter and air conditioning during the summer than necessary. Sealing up those gaps will of course prevent heat from coming in or leaving your home when you don’t want it to. Use simple tools like caulk and weather stripping to seal up your home and save as much as 30 percent on your energy bills.
4. Install Low Flow Water Fixtures
Gallons and gallons of water are wasted every day in most homes due to the use of showers and toilets. One way to lessen this waste is to replace your showerheads with low flow showerheads and your toilets with low flow models. This can slash the amount of water used in your bathrooms by over half.
5. Purchase a New Thermostat
This is another very cheap choice for making your home greener. Install a new thermostat that can be programmed. This will allow you to determine exactly when the heat or air conditioning will run in the home. If the house is empty during the day, the thermostat can be programmed to run the heat or air conditioning at minimum. This can lessen your carbon footprint and save up to hundreds of dollars a year on energy bills.
6. Use Recycled Countertops
Mining for marble, granite and other stone building materials harms the environment. One thing you should consider is installing countertops made from recycled materials. One excellent choice is terrazzo. Terrazzo is created by placing chips of other materials, such as marble, into cement. It is an aesthetically pleasing option that requires no mining and costs a tiny fraction of the cost of other choices.
7. Stay Away from Vinyl
What many people don’t know is that the production process of vinyl is one of the most environmentally harmful of all substances. The chemicals it is made from, which include phthalates and dioxin, can even be poisonous to humans. Fortunately, there are environmentally friendly alternatives. One is linoleum, which is made from safe linseed oil and works just as well as vinyl.