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Eco-Friendly Home Ideas to Start This Earth Day

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As Earth Day approaches, society is challenged to find ways to contribute to a sustainable environment. The good news is, establishing an eco-friendly home can help you save the green outside your window and in your wallet. Read on to learn about improvements you can make, room by room, for a more eco-friendly and cost- efficient home in 2019.

Green Home

The Living Room

The living room. It's where you and your family spend the majority of your evening time, and therefore, it has a lot of room for improvement!

1. Setting Your Thermostat

It's no secret that monitoring your thermostat can help you drastically improve your energy efficiency. When leaving for work in the morning bump up the temperature 5-8 degrees a half hour in the summer or down 10-15 degrees in the winter to start seeing results. Taking time to program your thermostat (if available) will have you effortlessly saving money in no time!

2. Replace Incandescent Lights with CFL Bulbs

An essential part of an Eco-Friendly home is Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs. CFL bulbs will save you 66% more energy than incandescent bulbs. Fun fact: it will also save you 400 lbs. of greenhouse gas emissions if you trade one incandescent bulb for one CFL bulb. CFLs are four times more efficient and last up to 10 times longer than incandescents and are not as stark as LEDs.

Help cut down costs on these energy zappers by plugging into a surge protector and flip the switch off when you're not using them.

3. Surge Protectors

In this digital era, it's safe to say we have a few cords running to our outlets. Leaving those appliances plugged in is probably zapping more energy than you'd think. American consumers spend about 3 billion, that's about 200 per household, on "vampire" electronics each year! Vampire electronics are those appliances that are not really turned off, but in standby mode (that red light on your TV is a great example).

Help cut down costs on these energy zappers by plugging into a surge protector and flip the switch off when you're not using them.

4. Open the blinds

Opening the blinds may seem like a no brainer, but we often forget that letting in a little natural light instead of turning on the lights can cut down our energy consumption. Always make sure to turn the lights off when you leave a room to help cut down on costs and energy usage.

Now that we've covered some room for improvement in the living room, let's move on to the kitchen on our eco-friendly home tour!

The Kitchen

1. Keep the oven door shut

Did you know that every time you open the oven door to check on the progress of your food for 30 seconds, you can lose up to 50% of the heat!

Do yourself a favor and cut down on energy and cooking time by keeping the oven door closed!

2. Stop pre-rinsing your dishes!

Good news! You don't need to pre-rinse your dishes before throwing them in the dishwasher! Pre-rinsing uses excess water and time that usually isn't necessary. You can also cut down on cost by making sure the washer is full before running and letting them air dry once done!

3. Energy efficient appliances

While you may not be rushing to replace your appliances any time soon, when you're ready to update your eco-friendly home, look for the ENERGY STAR®. ENERGY STAR® is the government- backed symbol for energy efficiency, providing simple, credible, and unbiased information that consumers and businesses rely on to make well-informed decisions.

Bathroom

Conserving water is one of the easiest ways to save energy and money. Here are some ways to make sure you're not flushing money down the toilet.

1. Turn off the water

You may have heard this one before but turning the water off while brushing your teeth can save you from wasting a lot of water. I'm talking 200 gallons per month!

2. Showers over baths

One bath uses about 30 gallons of water. So, if you take one bath every day for a month, that's about 930 gallons a month. Yikes! Instead, opt for taking a shower instead. You'll only use about 10-15 gallons per 5-minute shower.

3. Fix Leaks

Tackle leaks when they pop-up; otherwise, your procrastination could be costing you money and water.

Let's recap: Here are 9 things you can start doing today for an Eco-friendly home.

1. Check the Thermostat

2. Install CFL Bulbs

3. Open the blinds

4. Keep the oven door closed

5. Stop pre-rinsing

6. Look for energy efficient appliances

7. Turn off the water

8. Take showers over baths

9. Fix leaks when they happen

Sources

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/eco-friendly-home-50-ways-to-do-it_n_5916442

https://learn.eartheasy.com/guides/energy-efficient-lighting/

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2002/09/020926065912.htm

https://www.rachaelrayshow.com/food/cookingtips/25720_how_much_heat_escapes_when_you_open_oven_door

https://sustainability.ncsu.edu/blog/changeyourstate/6-times-you-should-turn-off-the-tap-to-save-water/

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