Remodeling Tips and Reviews

Ten Cheap Going Green Tips

We all want to help out but the question is how without growing broke. Going green  requires a commitment and if your really committed you have to replace everything in your house. Well I don’t know about you but I don’t have 50K in a bank to spend on a new car and appliances. So here are my top 10 cheap tips to help you go green.

  • Change out those old incandescent light bulbs.  If you’re like me you have about 30-40  in your house. Upgrading to CFLs will cost under $50 and will reduce your bill 10-20% a month. That is a no brainer.
  • Reduce your water footprint. If is is Summer water less often and soak instead of spray, which will dramatically reduce evaporation. Cut back on showers to every other day and make them snappy. Only run full loads of laundry and dishes. If you really want to green it up only flush on #2 unless the odor is too much for the nose.
  • Unplug or turn off that power strip powering everything in your entertainment center and computer. Even when those items are “off: they are still on standby. Standby accounts for 5-15% of a homes energy usage. Typical items such as a TV can use 5-10 watts in standby.  Here is a sample list of standby usage.
  1. Fax machines: 4.7 – 11.6 W
  2. VCR’s: 2.0 – 6.6 W
  3. TV’s: 0.6 – 12.7 W
  4. Scanners (flatbed): 8.3 – 14.2 W on standby; 0 – 5.1 W switched off
  5. Printers (inkjet): 1.6 – 8.6 W on standby; 0 – 8.4 W switched off
  • Set your air 2 degrees higher in summer and 2 degrees lower in winter. This cuts down on your electricity usage and saves you green to the tune of 10% off your electric bill in Summer.
  • Wash your clothes in cold water. This reduces your gas or electric heating bill.
  • Lower your hot water heater 5-10 degrees. This will reduce your gas or electric bill 3%.
  • Use a toaster or microwave in Summer when ever possible to reduce heat in the house from the oven. This will reduce how hard your a/c works to keep the house cool.
  • Recycle. Most cities are now offering curb side pick up. To not take advantage of this is almost criminal. 75% of the items thrown away in a typical house can be recycled and dramatically reduce landfill and manufacturing cost.
  • Seal those windows and doors. Make sure all your windows are properly sealed ( use a candle on a windy day to see if there are air leaks). Install weather stripping around doors and windows to seal them up.
  • Give up those cheap plastic bags and start using your own. These things should be outlawed. They end up everywhere in the environment and never break down. Whole foods has great bags that cost $1 and are perfect for groceries and anything else you can carry in them.