A few years ago, I noticed that my utility bills had been rising steadily. I decided to make energy efficient changes in my home that would help my pocket book and the environment. I began slowly and with green products that were easy for me to obtain and install. Therefore, I purchased compact fluorescent energy-saving light bulbs. I discovered that energy efficient bulbs use ¾ less electricity than regular bulbs. Fluorescent light bulbs may even last for seven years.
The new bulbs did cost more to purchase than a box of regular bulbs, but they’ve reduced my electric bill. After the light bulb switch, I was inspired to expand the greenness of my home and added a low-flow shower head. When I first used my shower after installing the reduced flow shower head, I considered placing my old shower head back on as I missed the extra water force. However, I decided to wait since I had gone to the trouble of installing them, and after about a week, I became used to the new shower heads. I was delighted that I had stuck it out after receiving my water bill two months later.
Power Strips for Easy Unplugging
The next green step I chose for my home was purchasing several power strips. With the strips in place, I plugged in all of my electronics externally where I could reach them. The power strips allowed me to unplug everything when I was finished using it and again I saw a decrease in my electric bill.
After falling into a routine of unplugging all of my electronics, I really got into the spirit of switching my home into a green, energy-efficient space and added a few new windows. I had the funds since my utility bills had majorly decreased, and with more windows, I could use the sun’s light longer instead of turning on my home’s lighting.
Heating and Cooling
I also began switching the way I heated and cooled my home. When winter came last year, I decreased the temperature in my home by two degrees lower than where I had it set the year before and began using blankets and sweatshirts to stay warm. For the summer, I intend to do the same and will be keeping my thermostat two degrees higher. I installed a programmable thermostat and have it set to a lower temperature when I go to bed.
I purchased a new refrigerator last year and made sure that the one I purchased was energy star rated. The next dishwasher I buy will have this rating as well. You can really save a lot of energy with energy saving appliances.
Home and Garden
I also reviewed my landscaping to see where I could improve my home’s energy savings and decided to plant a few more trees on the sunny side of my house. As the trees grow, they’ll cool my home naturally and give me a nice shady place to read during the spring and summer months.
I’m currently saving up for solar panels. They are expensive, but once I have them installed, my home can gain all of its required electricity from the sun. I feel as though I’m doing my part in helping the environment, and I know my kids will someday thank me for considering their future.
Brenda Panin is a marketing coordinator from Brisbane, Australia. She is representing Australian company specialized in asbestos removal.
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