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Helping to make our society more green and energy independent one blog post at a time

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LizzieWeakley

Junk Collectors The Best Practices to Recycling Your Scrap Metal.JPG

Recycling scrap metal shouldn’t have to be a fulltime job. There are lots of different resources available in which you can dispose of unwanted metal. Here are some of the best practices that you can use in order to recycling your scrap metal and be kind to the environment.

Understand Metal Types

The type of metal that you’re looking to recycle will dictate the means in which you can recycle it. Ferrous and nonferrous materials are sometimes required to be recycled by a different means. You can check the type of metal that you have by using a magnet to see if it sticks to them. Nonferrous metals are more likely to generate a profit since they tend to be rarer and in higher demand.

Use Curbside Where Possible

Some communities offer curbside recycling programs. This is one way that you can get rid of those smaller items that would fit into a bin. In some cities, you can dispose of old appliances in a similar manner. Call your local recycling collection agency to determine the best means of recycling your old scrap metal. This may help to alleviate some of the metal that you have lying around.

Look into a Scrapyard

For larger items or even large quantities of scrap metal, you may need to look into using a scrapyard. Scrap metal services are a good way in which to unburden yourself of that extra scrap metal lying around your home or the job site. Many of these sites will sort out the different types of metal for you to ensure that it can be properly recycled. This not only benefits you, but it also benefits the environment.

Generate Some Revenue

In some areas, you can sell your old scrap metal to a resale lot. Some of the more valuable types of metals will include copper and aluminum. These types of materials can often be found in plumbing fixtures, old electronics, and gutters. You can have your old scrap metal generate a little bit of profit for you by taking it somewhere that accepts this type of material.

The area in which you live will dictate the best method of recycling your scrap metal. You may have to think outside of the box a little bit in order to get rid of some of your larger pieces of metal in the most eco-friendly manner possible. Use these tips to get you started recycling your scrap metal around the house.

LizzieWeakley

Everyone says that the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, but green doesn’t always mean environmentally friendly. Those homeowners who want to be conscious of their impact on the environment can start with their own yard care practices and what they grow. Doing so can ensure that both your yard and the natural landscape beyond stay green and healthy, and here are a few ways you can accomplish that.

Use Native Plants

When you use plant life that is common to the community, it helps provide food and resources for native animals. You can ensure local species survive with trees, shrubs, and plants that offer food and nesting material. Growing native plants also prevents the spread of aggressive foreign plants that could overtake the local native plants in your area. Plus, local plants are easier to grow and care for because they thrive in your climate. If you want a low-maintenance yard, then the garden center can show you which plants are easiest to care for and hardy plants for your climate. 

Feed Pollinators

Bees help pollinate crops and flowers. Martha Stewart says 80 million pounds of pesticides are put on crops and communities across the United States annually. These chemicals kill bees and other animals that are susceptible to small environmental changes and displace others. Something as simple as planting flowers and fruits to provide nectars for pollinators can do a great deal of good in giving your local bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinators a place to refuel. Anything that flowers can work, so when you’re considering plants to grow in your yard and garden, keep that in mind.

Plant Trees

You can help the environment by planting trees. Not only do trees help clean the air, but they also offer valuable shelter to birds and animals. Fruit trees especially can be a source of nourishment for the local wildlife. Not only do the flower buds provide nectar for pollinators, as previously mentioned, but they also give fruits and seeds to birds, squirrels, and other animals that are now running out of healthy food sources and shelter. To encourage birds to return to your yard, planting oak trees for shelter is a great idea, and the acorns they grow make for great food for animals. Cardinals and bluebirds are partial to dogwood trees, and pine trees are excellent for most bird species, as well as for animals.

Use Organic Fertilizers

Another tip is to work with gardening centers and landscaping companies that offer organic fertilizers as opposed to the more toxic varieties. These organic fertilizers are safe for pets and any birds, bees, or animals that visit your yard while still creating a green lawn. If you want to attract specific species, then the landscaper can also give you ideas about what bushes or flowers you can plant to attract them to your yard. Make sure that the fertilizers you get work well with your intended plants and lawn, as different plants and regions require different nutrients to thrive properly.

You can make sure your side of the fence is greenest by adding local plants and trees. Organic fertilizer will protect your pets and ensure bees and birds are safe on your property. Whether you are familiar with the area or you want to know more about specific plants, the local garden center or landscape provider can help you discover the right ways to help the Earth in your little corner of the world. 

Is it Greener on Your Side of the Fence How to Keep Your Yard Environmentally Friendly.JPG

LizzieWeakley

Inside the Workplace How to Keep Your Office Green and Clean.JPG

Being a green office is more than just good for the environment. You can save your business some money be investing in these green and clean solutions. Here are some tips to get you started on making a greener workplace.

 

Limit Your Paper Consumption

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to print out your emails. This practice is not only wasteful, but time consuming. The whole point of moving to an electronic, paperless system is supposed to be that you use less resources. This means that there’s less overall waste in the workplace. This is good because you have to purchase less paper as well as being a greener and cleaner solution for your workplace.

 

Invest in Recycling

Encourage your employer to invest in a recycling program at your company. The only difference is the type of can that items are discarded into by employees. This has the benefit of being better for the environment and making everyone feel good at the company. When you stop to consider the costs of disposing of all the waste that’s generated at a business, recycling just makes economic as well as ecological sense. You may be able to reduce the monthly cost on your garbage bill.

 

Promote Green Solutions

Start up a program in which employees use reusable cups for both water and coffee while at the office. This will also reduce the amount of waste that’s generated in the workplace. Another solution is to invest in greener cleaning products. These types of cleaners generally produce less air pollution and residual chemicals on surfaces. This is a good thing if you have employees that suffer from asthma and other types of lung conditions.

 

Install Proper Filtration

The second part of developing a cleaner work environment is to have proper air filtration that removes or eliminates the amount of contaminants in the environment. There are a variety of kinds of products that can be used to achieve cleaner air in the workplace. Employees that work in a healthier environment are less likely to take as many sick days during the year. This can start to add up to a real savings for the company.

 

There are lots of ways that you can promote a cleaner and greener workplace. Look around you so that you can decide the best course of action when it comes to becoming more eco-friendly. There may even be tax incentives that you can take advantage of in your endeavors.

LizzieWeakley

The new year is finally here, making it the perfect time for a new resolution. For small business owners, a great resolution is to reduce unnecessary waste. Not only is eliminating excess waste beneficial for cutting costs, it also minimizes the impact on the environment. Since the average person creates four pounds of trash daily, imagine the amount of trash that accumulates from an entire staff? Practicing sustainability helps the environment and saves businesses money.

 

Double-Sided Printing

 

Believe it or not, there are businesses that still use printed sheets. Between constantly paying for paper and replacing ink cartridges, making copies can become extremely expensive. By printing on both sides, there are fewer sheets and materials that need to be purchased and recycled.

 

Donate Excess Goods

 

After realizing there are excess items that can be considered waste, it’s better to donate them rather than throw them away. For instance, if new inventory comes in or a product is discontinued, finding someone who can use those materials is a better way to repurpose them and cut garbage costs.

 

Frequently Train Employees

 

Understanding sustainability is only half the battle. It is important to inform employees of any changes that can make eliminating waste easier. It is important to inform employees on both how and why these precautions are being taken. For instance, if there is a new recycling policy, inform them on why it is beneficial for the business. It is also necessary to have regular meetings to share the triumphs and failures so the team can exchange feedback on how to improve on setbacks. Everyone staying on the same page is a key component of success.

 

Digital Tags

 

For retail businesses, paper tags can become expensive. Instead, using a digital price tag can save money on both paper tags and employees having to tag the items. Research shows that the initial investment in these digital tag machines pay themselves off within two and a half years, which eventually allows for the profits to be spent elsewhere. Digital price tag machines also can be instantly updated with a click of a button, which can display the original and sale price simultaneously.

 

The new year creates new opportunities for small businesses to make a profit. The best way to do so is recycling old products, communicating sustainability tips to employees, and cutting labor costs by using digital tags.

LizzieWeakley

How your Plumbing can Hurt your Home Energy Efficiency.JPG

 

One thing that affects many households is high energy bills. However, many people are left confused about what in their home could be causing their bills to skyrocket. While there are many possible causes, one thing most people don’t consider that often is their plumbing. However, issues relating to plumbing can certainly contribute to home’s energy inefficiency. Here are a few ways how.

1. It Is all About the Water Heater

According to
South West Plumbing, the number one source of plumbing energy problems is a home’s water heater. In fact, if you aren’t careful, energy consumption by your home’s water heater could balloon up to a quarter of your home’s entire energy use. The water heater is in fact the second largest user of most homes’ electricity right after the air conditioning system.

With that in mind, the water heater is a likely culprit for high electricity bills in your home. So what can you do about it? The first choice is rather straight forward. You can lower the setting on the thermostat. It really doesn’t have to be higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Installing a water heater insulation blanket will also do a good job of helping it better retain heat and waste less energy. Third, you could install a more energy efficient water heater with the Energy Star label.

2. Protect Your Pipes

The second likely cause of a home’s plumbing system resulting in high energy bills is a lack of insulation around pipes. If pipes aren’t insulated, the hot water sent from your water heater to fixtures in your home will not remain at the same temperature. Instead, a good portion of that heat will escape to the surrounding air right through the pipes.

Installing insulation around those pipes made out of foam or rubber, however, will do a good job of helping your hot water stay hot as it moves from the water heater to your bathrooms and kitchen. Insulation is also needed for plenty of other good reasons too like preventing your pipes from freezing up during the winter.

3. Use Less Hot Water

Lastly, one way to cut down on your electricity bill is to use less hot water in general. Does every load you wash in your washing machine really need hot water? For many kinds of clothing, cold water will certainly suffice. There’s also no reason to use hot water when washing dishes or washing your hands. Taking shorter showers can go a long way too.

There’s a few different ways your plumbing can inflate your energy bills. However, if you make sure your water heater is running efficiently, your pipes are insulated and hot water isn’t wasted in your home, you can certainly bring your electricity bills down significantly.

LizzieWeakley
blog-0253022001424731293.png

When you are struggling with energy efficiency in your home, you need to make sure that you are managing your air conditioning and heating. These systems use a great deal of energy, and you need to be sure that they are not sapping all the energy in the house. Take the steps below to make sure that your home is as efficient as it can be.

Servicing

You need to have your HVAC system serviced every couple months. Your service technician is going to check all the parts of the system, and they are going to make small repairs using parts from their truck. According to Shorty’s Plumbing & Heating Inc., these small repairs will prevent the problems from getting out of control. Also, they can tell you when it is time to replace your system.

Thermostats

When you are running the heat and air, you must have the units on thermostats. These units are going to allow you to turn the heat and air off when the house hits certain temperatures. These thermostats make it much easier for you to use less energy, and they shut down the system when you are not there to do it yourself. You can keep the house at less comfortable temperatures when you are not home, and you can set the system to change for your own comfort when you get home.

Filters

You need to be sure that you are replacing your filters often. These filters are going to allow you to keep air flowing freely through the system, and the will clean the air for you. When you are cleaning the air as much as possible, you are going to have cleaner air to breathe. You must make sure that you get filters that are going to help you breathe healthily. There are filters that clean hospital operating rooms, and there are standard filters that work in all homes.

Wiring

When you are concerned about how your HVAC system is working, you need to be sure that you are having the wiring checked. An electrician can check the wiring for you, and they can fix the wiring if it is a damaged.

Your home is going to become much more efficient if you are working with professionals who understand how to manage the system. They can help make the system more efficient, and they can show you how to replace your filters so that you get the cleanest air possible.

LizzieWeakley

Are you looking at your utility bill and are flabbergasted at the amount? Are you wondering what you can do to reduce energy costs without sacrificing comfort or convenience? If you answered yes, then you may need to upgrade your home appliances. Here is how upgrading your home appliances can reduce your energy consumption to save money.

Refrigerator

Every time you open your refrigerator, a light comes on so you can see the items stored in it. If you have had your refrigerator for more than ten years, then the bulb that is in there is likely contributing to your expensive energy cost. Newer makes and models of refrigerators now use LED lighting technology, providing bright light while reducing energy consumption. This is how upgrading your home appliances will reduce your energy consumption to save money by upgrading to appliances that utilize LED lighting systems.

HVAC System

One of the most used appliances in your home is your HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system. It is also one of the most expensive appliances to operate as it is used throughout the year, cooling your home during the summer and heating it during the winter season. Upgrading your HVAC system can reduce your energy consumption as newer systems were designed to operate efficiently and effectively. This means new techniques and technology are now being used in modern systems to help you reduce energy consumption without sacrificing comfort or convenience.

Washer and Dryer

Upgrading and replacing your washer and dryer is probably something that did not cross your mind, especially if they are still both in working order. However, just like your refrigerator and HVAC system, upgrading your washer and dryer would be advantageous to help you reduce energy consumption and to save money. As with many newer appliances, energy-saving features are now included to maximize and optimize the washing and drying processes.

Stove

Another home appliance that is often used and one that contributes to a high energy bill is your stove. Older stoves were built for only one purpose, and that is to produce heat for you to cook your meal. This means precious heat that your older stove is producing may be escaping because they were not designed with efficiency in mind. This is causing you to consume more energy. Upgrading your stove is how you can lower energy consumption as newer stoves are built and designed to focus heat where you need it the most, preventing it from escaping.

These are only to mention how upgrading your home appliances can reduce your energy consumption. Remember, take advantage of all the benefits newer technology has to offer by upgrading your home appliances to not only reduce energy consumption but to also save you time and money.

LizzieWeakley

Many modern homes offer energy-efficient features that make lowering your energy bill easy. But what about old homes that were built before energy-efficient features? Well, there’s hope for old homes, too. There are updates that can make your old home just as efficient as a modern home.

 

Updating an old home is often as simple or as complicated as you can afford to make it. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, then there are quick-fix changes that you can make. But if money is no object, you can invest in upgrades that take more time and money.

 

Switch to CFL or LED Light Bulbs

 

Incandescent light bulbs are fast becoming a thing of the past. CFL and LED light bulbs cost more than incandescent bulbs. But CFL and LED lights save more money in the long run.

 

An incandescent bulb consumes 60 watts per-hour. A traditional CFL bulb consumes 14 watts per hour. And a typical LED bulb consumes 10 watts per hour. The more watts consumed per hour, the higher your energy bill.

 

Get New Windows

 

It’s likely that your old home has single pane windows. Single pane windows have one layer of glass. They’re thin and known for being drafty. Since there’s only one pane of glass, it’s easier for outside temperatures to affect the temperature inside your home.

 

For an older home, upgrading to double pane windows is an energy-saving move. Double pane windows are made with two panes of glass. And some even have insulating argon gas placed between the panes. Two panes of glass provide more protection from outside temperatures than provided by one pane of glass.

 

Switch to Renewable Energy

 

Solar panels are a source of renewable energy. Solar panel installation services can help you understand the best option for your home for saving energy and money in the long run. 

 

Solar panels convert light from the sun into energy. The energy connects to your home’s electrical grid and is distributed throughout the home. Unless you live in a state that doesn’t get a significant amount of sun year round - such as parts of Alaska - then solar panels are worth considering.

 

An old home doesn’t have to guzzle energy. The tips mentioned in this article can help lower your energy costs without ruining your home.

LizzieWeakley

How to Run an Energy-Efficient Warehouse Business.JPG

Simple cell phones and incandescent light bulbs are being replaced this century. If you run a warehouse business, keep track of the new energy-efficient trends that are appearing. Review several components that will help you to create a more energy-efficient warehouse.

Led Lighting

LED lighting is the most energy efficient type on the market. In the beginning, people used fluorescent lights to illuminate their buildings, but decades later, they found out that LED lights are cooler, brighter and longer lasting. LED T8 tubes are standard in warehouses and other commercial buildings. Find a wide range of product styles from companies like LED Lighting Wholesale Inc.

Repairs and Maintenance

Maintain your warehouse equipment regularly and repair the machines that are not working. Repair malfunctioning parts without having to replace the entire machine. To avoid repairs in the first place, set up a regular maintenance plan every month or year.

Equipment Shutdowns

Turn off the lights or any machine that you are not using. Too many home and business owners leave their machines running all night when no one is using them for hours. Cut your energy bills in half by using motion detection devices, also known as occupancy sensors, that switch off the equipment automatically.

Door Seals

Hot or cool air that escapes from a room is a major contributor to energy loss. Air exfiltration cannot be avoided in a typical building where the doors are constantly opened and closed. Door seals prevent more air from being lost than necessary.

Look for openings near the doors and along the walls. Also look for hidden openings in the ceiling and behind machines. Tell workers not to leave doors or windows open when the HVAC system is running.

Energy Audits

The most overlooked step to conserve energy is to run audits. You cannot increase the energy efficiency in your warehouse if you don’t know how much energy you’re saving. An audit, done by a professional, outlines the differences between taking energy-saving steps and not taking them. Some online audit tools are available, but you get a more comprehensive plan with an onsite audit.

Warehouses are complex places where people work and do not just store inventory. Every day, you manage the lighting, ventilation and temperature settings and pay a huge bill at the end of the month. It’s necessary that you find ways to save energy for the main purpose of running a more affordable and efficient warehouse.

LizzieWeakley

From reducing your carbon footprint to eliminating toxins, running an environmentally sound household is within easy reach. Just as recycling and other day-to-day actions impact us all, home improvements offer advantages to both your family and the earth. If your goal is to go green, the following tips will help you cut heating and cooling costs while lessening negative environmental effects.

Inspect Your Home for Leaks

Don’t let heated or cooled air escape. Inspect your home for areas where leaks can occur. The most effective form of inspection is a blower door test, usually performed as part of an energy audit. For this test, a technician attaches a heavy-duty fan to an exterior door. The fan pulls air from your home to lower indoor air pressure. Higher outdoor air pressure forces air into holes, crevices, or other unwanted openings. If you’d rather do the inspecting yourself, visually check outside for gaps at corners, around the mail slot, at the line where your foundation touches the brick or siding, or in any place where two types of materials meet.

Decrease Drafts

Replace weather stripping to prevent leaks at exterior doorways. Caulk is perfect for preventing air loss around windows, but it also serves a purpose in other areas of your home. Caulking is also ideal for stopping air leaks around plumbing and wiring. Draft snakes reduce outside air entry, making your heating and cooling efforts more effective. For a longer-term solution, consider installing draft-stopping double-paned windows. New siding can also boost HVAC efficiency, especially when combined with new insulation. Durable siding backed by high-quality insulation protects your home from extreme temperatures and other harsh weather conditions. Research the best type of siding for your climate for keeping your home well insulated. In addition to resisting weather damage and preventing air loss, these two products work together to ensure your family’s comfort.

Prevent Leaks via Unused Appliances

Just as unplugging unused devices reduces power usage, covering or closing certain appliances while not in use is an easy way to reduce air loss. Exhaust fans, fireplace flue dampers and range hoods are just some examples of places where air can escape. Whether you purchase a cover for your exhaust fan or install an inflatable chimney balloon, take control of energy usage and costs by reducing opportunities for air to escape. In the hot summer months, you might want to reduce use of your oven as well. If you must use it, don’t leave it on for any amount of time after. Don’t let it heat up for too long either. This will prevent unnecessary heat from circulating around your home. 

Your home is your castle, but it doesn’t have to be drafty or low-functioning. Cut the effects of air loss by inspecting your home and making necessary adjustments. Even the most simple changes can make a huge difference. You’ll experience lower power bills and increased comfort while lessening your negative impact on the environment.

LizzieWeakley

Since World War II ended, agriculture has dramatically changed. New technologies have caused food productivity to soar. Mechanization, specialization, and increased chemical use hinder farmers from producing lower-priced foods and fiber. Government policies that favor maximized production is a key factor.

 

These developments have many positive effects and reduce the risks associated with farming. But they also have significant costs. Topsoil depletion, air pollution, groundwater contamination, and greenhouse gas emissions only scratch the surface. Also, there is the decline of family farms, neglect of farm laborers' living conditions, and human health threats due to new pathogens. As well, rural communities are being disintegrated due to the concentration of economics in the agricultural and food industries.

 

Over the last four decades, a growing movement has come forth that questions the need for high costs. This movement offers more innovative and reasonable alternatives. This movement is toward sustainable agriculture. It continues to garner increasing acceptance and support in the food production sector. The three main goals of sustainable agriculture are social equity, environmental health, and economic profitability. Although the concept is made up of a wide range of practices, policies, and philosophies, there are a few common principles that define sustainable agriculture.

 

Throughout this movement, practice and science have led to many key farming techniques aimed at sustainability.

 

Crop Rotation and Diversity

 

Maintaining plant variety can be very beneficial. It results in improved pest control and healthier soil. Incorporating intercropping and complex crop rotations are ways of implementing crop diversity.

 

Irrigation

 

Rainwater can be collected or harvested with the use of gravity feed water tanks. Harvesting rainwater helps the environment and saves money. Water from wells, lakes, ponds, streams, rivers, and other sources can also be stored.

 

Cover Crops

 

Clover and hairy vetch are two types of cover crops. Cover crops are planted off-season when an area would be left bare. Planting cover crops allows the soil to be protected and builds soil health by replenishing nutrients, lowering the need to use herbicides, preventing erosion, and keeping weeds at bay.

 

Reduced or No-Till Methods

 

To prevent weed problems and to prepare fields for planting, traditional plowing known as tillage has been used. However, this generally causes massive soil loss. Reduced or no-till methods allow seeds to be directly inserted into undisturbed soil. This reduces erosion and improves soil health.

 

Overall, more diverse and complex agricultural practices have proven to be the most productive and sustainable.

LizzieWeakley

You likely spend a lot of time in your bedroom. It can be difficult to keep your bedroom comfortable. However, there are some things that you can do in order to keep your bedroom at a comfortable temperature without straining the HVAC.

Invest in House Plants

There are several ways that house plants can keep your bedroom comfortable. The plants help purify the air, reducing the amount of loose carbon dioxide in your room. Placing plants outside your bedroom window can shade your window from the sun and thereby help in cooling the room itself. Because plants soak in the energy of the sun to use themselves, they provide excellent shade both from heat and UV rays.

Install a Ceiling Fan

Ceiling fans are effective for keeping your home cool. They do not lower the temperature of the room. However, they will make your room more comfortable, which will reduce the need to use a HVAC system. However, it is important to make sure that the blades are turning the right direction. The blades will need to turn counterclockwise. They will disperse cool air. When circulating clockwise, they disperse warm air, which can be helpful in the winter but awful if you’re avoiding summer heat.

Upgrade Your Windows

Older windows have a tendency to let cool air escape. That is why if you have the windows for several years, then it is time for you to get them replaced. It can be expensive to upgrade your windows. However, you will be able to save a lot of money over time. If getting new windows is out of your budget, then you will need to make sure that your windows are sealed. Sealing the windows will prevent the cold air from escaping.

Keep the Doors Open

One of the best things that you can do if you are trying to keep your home cool without a HVAC is to keep the doors open. This will increase the ventilation in the room and allow the HVAC to properly circulate air throughout the house. It will also prevent your home from getting too hot. The closer to your central heating, the more important it is to keep your door open.

Upgrade Your Lightbulbs

The lightbulbs that you use may be keeping your home hotter than it should be. If you have incandescent lightbulbs, then you will need to upgrade them. You can replace them with compact fluorescent lightbulbs or LED lightbulbs. Those lights are not only cooler, but they also use less energy.

You do not have to put a strain on your HVAC system to keep your home comfortable. You can use house plants to keep it comfortable. You can also use a ceiling fan and upgrade or seal your windows. It is also a good idea to keep the doors open. Furthermore, you can upgrade your lighting.

LizzieWeakley

How to Make Your Plumbing System More Efficient for the Winter Months.JPG

 

The winter season poses several problems for Colleyville residential and commercial property owners. Sudden temperature drops can freeze pipes and cause leaks, flooding and expensive remediation. It can also take longer than usual and cost more to get repairs during emergency calls this time of year. To make your plumbing system more efficient and less likely to break down this winter, do the following:

Add More Insulation

One of the best ways to prevent pipe freezing is by using insulation to maintain warmer temperatures in certain areas that are affected the most by outside temperatures, such as exterior walls, crawl spaces, attics and basements. Additionally, you should wrap cold and hot water pipes. Insulated hot water pipes are not only less likely to freeze. They are also less likely to lose heat, which means you can turn down your hot water heater and save on your electricity bill. Keep in mind that insulation is useless unless you also seal any gaps at windows, doors, vents or other areas along exterior walls with caulk and other sealants.

Shut Down Outdoor Water Sources

Since outdoor water sources can freeze much easier than indoor ones, it is important that you turn off water to outdoor faucets and attached water systems like garden and irrigation hoses. After the water is completely turned off, drain, remove and store the hoses and then wrap each faucet with an old heavy cotton t-shirt or towel, a heavy duty plastic freezer bag and duct or shipping tape.

Keep Drain Pipes Clean

Frozen pipes and related problems are not the only thing you need to worry about this winter. One of the biggest problems that plumbers hear about during the holidays is drain clogs. To prevent an emergency plumbing situation when you are trying to enjoy festivities with loved ones, install mesh debris catchers at the top of the drain pipes in each sink to collect hair, food and other debris. These traps are also a perfect year-round solution to prevent large debris clogs. The secret to preventing clogs from soap scum, grease and microorganisms is cleaning the pipes at least once a month with a simple homemade method: Pour one pot of boiling hot water down each drain followed by one cup of baking soda and one cup of vinegar. Wait five minutes and then follow up with another pot of water.

Invest in a Plumbing Inspection

Things can go horribly wrong with your system for no other reason than a part breaking down because of age or defect. To help lower the chance of winter plumbing surprises, contact an experienced plumber like those at Piece of Mind Plumbing, a company that offers
plumbing services in Colleyville. A plumbing specialist can determine if your system is at risk for leaks and other issues like water heating problems or if it needs a thorough professional cleaning.

You rely on plumbing throughout the day for so many things, including hot showers, cold drinking water and waste disposal. These few steps can make certain that your plumbing performs optimally all winter long.

LizzieWeakley

How to Make Your Home Safer for the Environment.JPGLiving greener can benefit both you and the environment. One of the best ways to adopt an eco-friendlier lifestyle is by making some modifications around your home that will be better for the ecosystem. Here are four tips to turn your home into a safer setting for the planet. Various appliance and utility options will save you long-run costs, make your home more sustainable to maintain, and help the environment. Here are just four options to get you started on improving your home.

Switch to an Energy-Efficient HVAC System 
Some of the best heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems to be developed in recent years are designed specifically to save energy. The standards for energy efficiency in HVAC systems in general have been raised, making more modern systems more cost effective and more environmentally friendly. Even with the reduction in energy use, your home’s indoor temperatures and air quality will still be regulated properly with the right system. Many of the top-rated HVAC systems nowadays feature programmable thermostats that can be set to turn on and shut off automatically instead of running continuously and wasting energy. 

Build with Recyclable Materials 
If you’re looking for additions to your home or trying to build a new home from scratch, using recyclable materials will put less strain on the planet’s natural resources. CBS News reports that certain homes are made from bricks that consist of glass, clay, and ceramics. Some of the remnants from demolished houses can also be salvaged and used to construct a new home. Recycled steel for the supports are both affordable and eco-friendly, and recycled timber can be used for new floors, cabinets, ceilings, and anywhere that new timber could be used. These recycled materials often are more durable, as well, making them both cheaper to buy and cheaper to maintain, as well as being more environmentally friendly. 

Install a Domestic Sewage System 
Human waste that travels through your pipes into a public sewage system may end up being untreated and released into local rivers or lakes or the ocean. To prevent this problem, you can have a domestic treatment tank installed on your property. For domestic use, miniature sewage system plants are installed underground on your property, safely treating and disposing of your home’s wastes. They are cost-effective, as well, as you only need them cleaned every 3-5 years, and otherwise are their own little ecosystem, using natural bacteria to maintain themselves.

Use Native Plants to Decorate Your Yard 
As lawns and gardens are becoming more lavish, more foreign plants are being introduced to environments that they are either ill-suited to or else could dominate. Seeds from non-native plants can spread to the local environment and create harmful competition for the natural plant life in the area. Not only are native plants safer for the surrounding ecosystem, but they also won’t need as many resources to survive, as they are able to draw from the natural environment around them. Native plants are also likelier to have adapted to surviving local pest infestations and won’t require the use of as many pesticides. Overall, using plants that are native to your area is more cost effective and safer for the surrounding ecosystem than bringing in foreign plants.

While not all aspects of maintaining the environment can be controlled by individual homeowners, there are some small decisions in the construction and maintenance of your home that can majorly impact the environment for better or worse. With the right modifications, you’ll be able to turn your home into a setting that helps promote more longevity for the earth and your family.

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Making your home more energy efficient is important for a couple of reasons. For one thing, it significantly reduces your utility bills, and all those monthly savings will be a major boost to your budget. Also, with environmental catastrophe predicted by most climatologists, you can feel good about doing your part to stave off disaster and improve the health of the planet. With so much to gain, striving for energy efficiency is a no-brainer. But how does one go about it? Energy-efficient appliances often spring to mind, but replacing them can be pricey. Luckily, there are plenty of smaller steps you can take to maximize your home efficiency. Here are five ideas.


 

Turn Down the Heat

 

A toasty home can be nice, but it also uses up a town of energy. Get your household in the habit of wearing sweaters in the house, and then turn that thermostat down a few degrees. Before you know it, you’ll be accustomed to the cooler temperature (and the lower utility bills).


 

Replace or Seal Your Windows

 

Old, drafty windows let cold air into your home, which in turn makes your heating system work harder and burn more energy to get the interior air back to the temperature you want. New, energy-efficient windows are the best bet, but sealing currant windows is also a useful step to take.


 

Install LED Light Bulbs

 

Incandescent bulbs, for generations the industry standard, are significantly less efficient than their LED equivalents. To replace the old bulbs with more efficient ones is a cheap, easy way to lower your house’s energy use.


 

Wash Clothes With Cold Water

 

If you use warm water to wash your clothes, then the heating of that water accounts for up to ninety percent of the energy that the machine uses. With a simple flip of a switch, you can make your washer significantly more efficient. If your washing machine is using too much hot water, call a washer and dryer repair company to make sure you aren’t using an unnecessary amount of water. 


 

Unplug Chargers

 

Unused chargers use just as much, if not more, electricity as when you have a device connected to them. If you leave your charger plugged into the wall, you are needlessly wasting energy. It can be a tough habit to break, but it does a world of good.


 

Energy efficiency is as good for your bank account as it is for the planet, and can be achieved even without replacing all your appliances. Take the steps mentioned above to make your home as energy efficient as it can be.

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A home is a special place for everyone after retiring from the troubles of the outside world. Waste production, deforestation, and illegal dumping are the significant causes of pollution in our environments. According to the World Health Organization, some global deaths are as a result of pollutants. Naturally, every human being desires a clean environment. However, the environmental challenges have left many wondering how they can have an eco-friendly and stylish home at this age. Below are tips on how your home can be a haven:

 

Use non-toxic materials

 

Home decoration materials must be critically selected. We have things like paints, carpets, or even blankets that have been known to contain toxic and allergic toxins. These toxins are harmful to humans. Therefore, it is vital to make inquiries before the purchase of any item coming to your home.

 

Growing of House–plants

 

House plants have been known to offer several benefits. They import the natural world into the house and brighten up space. They are a significant enhancement to every photographic opportunity within the home. One can also grow useful plants that are naturally suitable for natural remedies as well as beauty purposes. These houseplants can be placed at either the bookshelves or picture ledges or wall hangings.

 

Use of natural cleaning products

 

Harmful chemicals are the biggest threat to any environment. This is because even after washing them, they go down with water. Later on, this water takes a very long time to be purified before it's safe for consumption. However, the good news is that there are several natural cleaning products. They include citric acid, vinegar, and bicarbonate of soda. These natural products also leave the air fresh.

 

Embrace vintage or retro furniture

 

New furniture contains chemicals that are slowly released to the air for years, leaving toxins in your space. Contrarily, recycled furniture or vintage rarely gives out compounds. The reasons are that vintage items don’t have chemicals while the retro furniture had already emitted the chemicals years ago. Many shops sell these types of furniture.

 

Ventilate

 

Many homes have windows that are energy-efficient, sealing the house well. Sadly, most people rarely open their windows. This means that indoor toxins and chemicals remain trapped inside the house. Lack of fresh air inside the home makes it stinky and uncomfortable.


In addition to these tips, one can buy luxaflex blinds from a blind and shade company. The blinds will give your rooms a perfect balance of light filterings, privacy, and heat control. Once you employ these tips, you will be assured of a toxic-free environment.

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How to Make Waste Disposal Environmentally Friendly in Your Community.JPG

 

If you are in charge of waste disposal in your community, you will be responsible for making sure that waste products are disposed of in a manner that is green. Community waste products that are normally safe can become hazardous if they are not managed properly. For example, motor oil is normally safe, but can contaminate drinking water in large quantities. Even products that are not hazardous will fill up landfills.

Renting a Dumpster

When it is time for your community to dispose a lot of waste, it is important to do so in a rented dumpster from a company like
Tri-State Disposal. Disposing of large quantities of waste in any other way would be terrible for the environment and may also be against dumping laws. More dumpsters can be rented as needed when the volume of garbage is larger than expected.

Reduce, Reuse and Recycle

The best way to make waste more manageable is to follow the three R's: reduce, reuse and recycle. While you cannot force residents of a community to perform these actions, you can remind residents and provide them with tips on how to achieve this ideal. To also ease the burden of disposing of hazardous waste, encourage residents to use safer alternatives. For killing pests, for example, encourage residents to use less toxic pest control methods such as the use of boric acid.

Hazardous Waste Pickup Day

Communities should implement programs in which residents can mail hazardous waste to a facility where the waste can then be disposed of. The hazardous waste should be kept separate from the regular trash. The type of products that need to be disposed of in a particular manner include:

  • Household cleaners

  • Garden chemicals

  • Sharps

  • Mercury

  • Paint

  • Batteries

  • Automotive products


Many of these products can be recycled. Others will need to be sued up and will then no longer need to be disposed of. For example, homeowners who need to dispose of household cleaners could simply give them to a neighbor to be used.

Changing the habits of your community to make it
more eco-conscious can be challenging, but with a little practice, your members of your community will make habits and good recycling practices of their own. Then, your community will reduce the amount of garbage that ends up in landfills and will protect the environment from hazardous waste.

 

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As more and more people become aware of the importance of a sustainable lifestyle, we are discovering new ways to reduce waste and pollution in every aspect of our lives. Increasingly, people want to feel good about the goods that they buy. Whether that means using a refillable travel mug to buy fair-trade coffee in the morning or shopping online for vegan footwear, people are waking up to the fact that sustainability is a must. Here are a few ways we can integrate eco-friendly solutions into the arts and entertainment?

Non-toxic Oil Paints

Unlike other forms of visual arts that can use reclaimed or sustainably harvested materials, oil painting seems to be unable to shed its toxic plumage. Even with eco-friendly brushes and canvases, the heart of the matter, the paints themselves, are an eco-nightmare. As an alternative to resigning yourself to working with toxic sludge, non-toxic paints have become available to the aspiring Picasso. These paints deliver the same quality without polluting our water and soil when you have to dispose of them.

Vegan Ballet Shoes

The ballet is a world built on tradition, hard work, and timeless beauty. Choosing a good ballet shoe, whether it's a point shoe or ballet flats, is an important and deeply personal issue. Even the constructions of a ballet shoe is an artform draped in tradition and centuries of craftsmanship. Unfortunately, not all of those traditions are eco-friendly. For those who are trying to live a more sustainable lifestyle, choosing ballet flats can be even more difficult. Luckily, several brands have come along to offer you vegan ballet flats that couple excellent performance with sustainable high-quality materials.

Natural Bamboo Reeds

Bamboo as a construction material is an eco-wonder. It's easy to farm and grows quickly. It's also incredibly strong and can be used in everything from scaffolding to home furnishings. Bamboo fibers are used to make paper, cloth, crafts, and even bicycles. The next time you are shopping for art supplies, choose supplies made from natural bamboo reeds.

Sustainable Yarn

Sustainable and ethically sourced yarn is not limited to yarn made from recycled fibers. Yarn from ethically sourced wool or other sustainable fibers is also an acceptable alternative to have a more sustainable craft. While availability might be a concern for some, the quality of these yarns is on par with their less ethically sourced competitors.

The desire to create beauty is one of the most basic of human instincts, but people are increasingly aware that there is no beauty in a thing that creates suffering. With a few changes in how we produce art and use resources, we can make our art not only beautiful but a source of greater good.

How to Make the Arts More Eco Friendly Without Sacrificing Quality.jpg

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How to Make sure your Home is Energy Efficient for Spring.JPG

Spring brings sunshine and warmer weather, and this means it is a good time to evaluate your home for energy efficiency. Drafts and other issues can mean higher electric and gas bills all year long, but there are steps you can take to ensure your comfort and savings. Here are things to do right away.

Check your Water Heater

Turning the temperature down just a few degrees can save you money. In addition, if you haven’t had the tank flushed in a while, now is a good time to do it. Sediment in the bottom of the tank reduces efficiency because it can block the heating element, in addition to other problems the sediment can cause.

Schedule Air Conditioning Maintenance

Schedule a seasonal preventive maintenance visit with a local HVAC company such as
Cape Fear Air Conditioning & Heating Co., Inc. A technician will inspect your AC to make sure components are clean, and in good repair, which is necessary for the most energy efficiency once the cooling season is in full swing. Dirty or poorly maintained systems use extra energy to keep your home cool.

Check Your Windows

Wet your hand and move it slowly around the window frame to check for drafts. Sometimes winter weather causes things to shift, including weatherproofing, and you might need to re-caulk or add weather-stripping. For even more energy efficiency, purchase solar curtains if you don’t already have them up. They help block any residual drafts and they keep the hot afternoon sun from raising indoor temperatures too much. The cooler you can keep your house through methods like this, the less electricity your air conditioner will use.

Check the Attic

A hot attic leads to a hot house if you don’t have the right amount of insulation or the insulation has been damaged through pest activity or moisture. Even if you had it checked before winter, it is a good idea to recheck it in case the roof leaked or other problems occurred.

Invest in Fans

Fans make the air feel cooler because they help move heat away from the surface of the skin. This allows you to put off using your air conditioner for longer or keep your thermostat set higher to reduce energy usage. Ceiling fans are best, but any fan will help.

When you do all you can in spring to make your
home more efficient, you will have less to do in the heat of summer. In addition, you should see energy savings quickly. It is easy to imagine all the other things that saved money can be used for this season.

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A sustainable venture has tremendous benefits, such as enhancing productivity and attracting more customers. For this reason, you can ensure that you adhere to the environmental law practice by safeguarding nature. This way, you will conserve and not waste resources in your business.

 

Recycle Products

 

It is prudent to recycle items such as electronics, paper products, fluorescent bulbs, and supplies to sustain the environment. If you can reuse some things, it will be the best approach to minimize wastage. You need to analyze the items fists so that you can decide if they are fit for recycling.

 

Utilize Green Energy

 

Sometimes it is better to harness other sources of energy such as solar to minimize electricity bills. What’s more, you need energy-efficient bulbs that will conserve the power as well. This way, you can cut down on the excessive use of energy at work. Ensure that you switch off lights that are not essential at night.

 

Repair Water Leakages

 

When water leaks from pipes in your business, it causes both health and financial harm. On that account, you need to look for a plumber who can repair faucets, sewer lines, and water lines as well. The expert should also assess running toilets and remedy the situation as quickly as possible.

 

Dispose of Hazardous Waste Properly

 

If your organization deals with toxic substances, you need to follow the right safety standard while getting rid of the waste. Alternatively, you can contact a disposal company that knows how to handle the unwanted stuff. This way, everyone will be safe, and your employees will not get exposed to harmful items.

 

Train Employees

 

Your employees are the best people who should know about protecting the environment at all costs. On that account, you need to equip them with skills and knowledge on how they can practice sustainability. You can also ask for some ideas from them as they have concepts on how to go about it. It should be a collaborative effort so that everyone can play their part in maintaining eco-friendly standards. Your business will thrive, and you will cut on bills that come at the end of the month.


 

Ultimately, it is prudent to manage resources so that natural phenomena can be at peace. Resources will not strain or suffer from depletion since your venture is striving to protect them. For this reason, you can reduce wastage by switching to green power and fixing water leakages. The other approach is recycling and discarding waste using the correct means.

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The most common material in your home is wood. Your patio chairs, bed, or even flooring is made up of wood. Like every other industry today, the wood construction industry is shifting towards ethical furniture and the use of sustainable timber. Today, preserving the world’s trees and forests is essential for the survival of the human race. Therefore, buying wood is a bit challenging since you have to know where it is coming from and how it was harvested.

 

What is sustainable timber?

 

Many homeowners do not want to take part in deforestation; hence, they want to avoid the ‘bad’ wood. Sustainable wood is timber from sustainably managed forests. Sustainable wood is renewable as it is grown to prevent damage to wildlife or the ecosystem. Controlled forests last for the long term, meaning they will control carbon emissions for generations to come.

On the other hand, unsustainable sources just cut down the trees leaving bare land, thus leading to full destruction.

 

Why buy sustainable timber?

 

Buying timber from unsustainable sources has some severe effects on their places of origin. Without their knowledge, homeowners who purchase unsustainable timber may promote the hunting of endangered species and abuse human rights in those places. Ninety two percent of the earth’s forests are not adequately protected from destruction. Thus, buying sustainable timber is a way of preserving the future earth’s forests and the coming generations.

 

Which timbers are more sustainable?

 

Timber is usually classified as either softwood or hardwood. Simply because softwoods like pine and fir grow fast, they are sustainable. Buying European timber is a safe choice for homeowners as the EU introduced measures to protect its forests. Today more trees are planted than felled therefore European forests are growing instead of diminishing Here are exotic timbers that you should avoid:

Ebony

Teak

Wenge

Sapelle

Murbau

 

How to identify sustainable wood

 

Here is what homeowners need to do to ensure they spend their money on sustainable timber:

 

  • Buy reclaimed timber: This is the best way of ensuring you are using responsibly sourced wood as no tree is cut down when homeowners buy reclaimed wood. Buying reclaimed wood prevents unnecessary logging.
  • Look for the FSC logo: The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an independent non-governmental organization that promotes responsible management of the earth’s forests. Their certification method provides internationally recognized standards and trademark assurance to homeowners who support responsible forestry.
  • No FSC logo? Inquire more: When homeowners are interested in timber, which is not FSC certified, they should ask questions like the country and region it originated from and the lumber company that harvested it. If the retailers don’t have the answers, they should go ahead and ask their suppliers. This will enable them to know the history of the timber.


For your home renovations and upgrades, visit a supply company like Old World Lumber Company, for a large selection of reclaimed wood perfect for the environmentally aware homeowner.

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How to Make Sure You Have Clean Air in Your Home.JPG

 

Most people assume that they have clean air in the home and that their environment is safe to live in, but pollutants and dust from the outdoors are known to settle inside of buildings. This can often lead to asthma and allergies for many residents in each season of the year. To increase your home's air quality and create a cleaner setting, there are a few important steps to take to breathe easier.

Replace Your HVAC Filters

The filters in your HVAC system will circulate dirty air if they aren't replaced every few months. Install new air filters several times a year to ensure that the dirt that is captured in the air doesn't recirculate in the home.

Use an Air Purifier

An air purifier is extremely effective at cleaning the air and removing contaminants that are present. This includes removing second-hand smoke that has accumulated in homes where smokers are present. Dust, pollen, and pet dander will also be eliminated to make it easier to breathe and avoid allergies in each season of the year. Use the air purifier in each room of the home for several areas to ensure that the product works effectively in a small setting.

Keep the Windows Closed

Although most people open up their home's windows to allow fresh air in, it can cause pollution and pollen to enter the home easily. Make it a point to keep the windows closed during the spring season to secure the interior setting. Rely on fans to circulate the air and keep the home cooler during the day. You also want to check the air quality level in your local area each day to determine if it's safe to leave the windows open for a few hours.

Schedule an Inspection

Hire a company like
AirCheck One to perform an inspection to pinpoint specific areas in the home that have poor air quality levels. Gases, mold spores, lead, and particulate matter will all be discovered if they're present in the home to create a more habitable environment.

It can be difficult to prevent toxins and allergens from entering your home each day, but there are still many ways of purifying the air and increasing your health over time. With the right tools and equipment used, you can enjoy having clean air in your home and reducing the effects of certain health conditions that you may suffer from.

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Owning a piece of history in the form of a 19th-century home is an incredible way to make history come alive every day. Though the beauty of the architecture of these classic homes can't be matched, that beauty often comes at the price of high utility bills.

 

Though these homes were efficient in their time, the effects of aging have rendered them fairly energy-inefficient. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to improve the energy-efficiency of your 19th-century home, thus lowering your energy costs.

 

Seal the Gaps

One of the biggest areas of energy loss from older homes occurs through the cracks and gaps that form in the home as it settles over the decades. Though this is something you have to deal with in a home of any age, it's especially pronounced in historic homes.

 

It's a good idea to conduct an energy audit of your home to find specific areas where the air inside your home is leaking outside and the air outside your home is leaking in. Filling these gaps and cracks with appropriate materials will greatly increase your home's energy-efficiency.

 

Replace the Windows

Though older homes were built with many energy-efficient features that were often better-planned than today's homes, one feature that has vastly improved on today's homes is the windows. Many older homes have single-glazed windows, meaning just one pane of glass stands between the interior of your home and the unconditioned air outside.

 

By replacing your windows with new energy-efficient windows, therefore, you're likely to see a big drop in energy consumption. Plus, many new windows come with UV protection built-in, which can protect the historic furniture and finishes in your home.

 

Replace the Doors

Though there's nothing quite like the beauty of an antique door, that doesn't mean it's the best option to keep your energy costs under control. Especially if one or more doors in your home are suffering from rot or some type of termite damage, replacing your doors with new Andersen doors is a great way to save some cash. In addition to being more energy-efficient, new doors tend to be more secure, as their frames are better-reinforced and their construction more focused on potential points of entry.

 

Wrap the Pipes

If you've ever been into the basement of your 19th-century home only to be amazed at the network of pipes carrying water throughout your home, it's important to know that these exposed pipes are costing you money. Exposed pipes sitting in uninsulated spaces, especially those carrying hot water, are quick to lose their temperature as they travel through a cold basement.

 

On the other hand, cold water pipes are at risk of freezing if you don't have some form of heat in your basement. Do yourself a favor, then, and wrap all your pipes. This will lessen the work your water heater has to do and prevent any messy burst pipes in your basement.

 

Whether you've lived in your 19th-century home for some time or if you're new to historic-home living, it can seem as though your to-do list is never-ending as you seek to make improvements to your home. By understanding which changes will have the biggest return on investment, though, you can begin to do the work that will transform your home into what you always envisioned. Then, though it may still be far off, the finish line will draw that much closer.

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A house is not just a building - it's a system with inputs and outputs. Maintaining a home takes work, and can generate significant environmental pollution. Environmentally conscious homeowners also face a mismatch between the technology available at the time of their house's construction and what's available now. Fortunately there are many home upgrades that can reduce your house's environmental impact.

 

Water Pollution

 

Water is one of your home's most important inputs and outputs. Whether your water comes from a well or a municipal water supply, you may be concerned with biological hazards, toxins, and excessive hardness in your water. Plus, there's a risk of these pollutants flowing through and affecting not just you but also your downstream environment. In both cases, installing home water treatment systems is a home upgrade that can protect your health, extend the life of your water-using appliances, and reduce the burden on septic systems or municipal water treatment systems. Another benefit is improved taste - staying hydrated with your own tasty tap water is more environmentally friendly than drinking bottled water. If your toilet, washing machine, or dishwasher is nearing the end of its life, choose a more water-efficient replacement. Consider installing low-flow nozzles on sinks and showers.

 

Air Pollution

 

Home heating and indoor air quality are issues whose importance to homeowners has risen in tandem with fuel prices and worries about climate change. There are two major home upgrades that can reduce your home's contribution to air pollution: first, insulating the walls, attic, and foundation of your house, and second, upgrading your heating appliance. Replacing combustion appliances (furnaces, boilers, wood stoves, kerosene heaters, etc.) with electrical heating appliances is ideal; replacing them with more efficient combustion appliances is a close second. But if you pursue these upgrades without first ensuring that your house is properly insulated and air-sealed, you may be throwing your money away.

 

Ground Pollution

 

If you have a yard or a community garden plot, you can use that land as part of your home's waste disposal systems. Upgrade your home by starting a compost pile - diverting your food waste will reduce the strain on our landfills, and by keeping grass clippings and other yard waste out of storm drains, you will also help protect groundwater quality.

 

There are many options for homeowners looking to reduce their environmental impact. To find more information, consult home improvement professionals, national standards organizations, and government resources.

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How to Keep your Home Energy Efficient During a Power Outage.JPG

 

Many of us have experienced power outages at one time or another. They can be inconvenient, but your can be prepared by keeping your home energy efficient with these simple tips.

Stay Out of the Fridge!

During a power outage, fight the urge to peek in your refrigerator. Refrigerated foods should be fine for up to 4 hours, but this time is significantly decreased every time you open the door. If the power will be out for more than 4 hours, pack perishable items into a cooler with ice. Dispose of any items that have been above 40 degrees for more than 2 hours as they may no longer be safe to eat.

Keep Heat In

To minimize heat loss, avoid opening doors during an outage. Keep drapes and shades closed on the shady side of your house, and open shades to bright sun to allow heat in. If you think your house may drop below 32 degrees, open faucets and allow them to drip a small amount to prevent your pipes from freezing. Turn the breaker off to your water heater to prevent damage should the power be restored when the tank is empty. Lastly, having an energy efficient home before an outage will pay big dividends all year. Ensure your home is properly insulated, has energy efficient windows, and cracks are sealed.

Consider a Home Generator

With such a wide variety, home generators are a responsible option for homeowners and business owners such as Free Service Tire Company who are worried about extended power outages. Customers can purchase small portable units than can be hooked up to critical appliances like the refrigerator, a few lights, and a space heater all the way up to larger units that can be hardwired into your circuit breaker to provide power to your entire house. Companies like
Wade Sales & Services have a variety of units to fit your energy needs and budget, and a knowledgeable service representative can help you find the right one for you. When properly installed by a licensed dealer, a home generator is the perfect way to provide seamless power generation to your home that is safe and secure.

Power outages can be inconvenient, but they don’t have to turn into a disaster with these simple tips to increase the energy efficiency of your home. During an outage, contain heat as much as possible, and consider a back-up generator to provide for your needs when the power grid fails.

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