We’d be lying if we said we’ve never considered installing a swimming pool when building a house. However, constant warnings about global warming have put many things in perspective for all of us. If you’ve become aware of the negative impact that every one of us has on our planet, and you’re ready to make your home more eco-friendly, stay tuned.
The first mantra every eco-conscious person learns is: Think globally, act locally. The same one can be applied when deciding to make your home greener. Little things and habits matter the biggest difference in the long run, and here are some ideas on small things you can change:
- Use LED bulbs instead of incandescent ones. LED bulbs are designed to have a lifespan up to five times longer than old-fashioned ones. If you switch five of your most frequently used lights in the house, you will save around $75 a year on your electricity bill.
- Avoid one-time-use household items. Instead of using paper, wipe the tables with a sponge. When cleaning the house, use a set of rags for each task.
- Turn down your water heater to 120F. Despite the fact that manufacturers typically set the temperature to 140F, it doesn’t need to be any higher than 120, in most homes.
- Wash your clothes with cold water. Running a hot load of laundry costs you money because you’re paying for the water to heat up. In addition, your clothes will be ruined faster when washed in hot water than in cold. The ”eco mode” button is also useful to have on your washer.
- Take advantage of ”off-peak hours”. Turn on your washer or dishwasher at night when the energy demand is lower.
Green plants will help you go green
Besides being a great decorative addition with a calming effect on your mental health, some plants have an eco-friendly value of their own. Benzene, for example, is a toxic chemical found in building materials and cigarette smoke, and it’s easily eliminated by just keeping the right plants in your home.
Carbon monoxide, benzene, and formaldehyde – are as toxic as they sound. Luckily for you, the bamboo palm releases large amounts of clean water into the atmosphere that purifies the air. Additionally (besides looking adorable next to furniture), it serves as a natural humidifier for other plants that are suffering from dehydration. During the summer, the bamboo palm requires frequent watering, whereas, in the winter, this is not as necessary.
Even though being falsely accused of attracting snakes, or even bad energy (according to Feng shui), these cuties remove formaldehyde and benzene from the air of your home. Every night, this plant replenishes your home’s air with a significant amount of fresh oxygen. The snake plant prefers bright light, but it can also thrive in lower levels of illumination. The only tricky part about this beauty is its toxicity towards animals, making it hard to keep around pets.
If you’re wondering what’s all the fuss about aloe vera, this is the best time to find out. When it comes to removing chemicals from the air, the aloe vera plant performs exceptionally well. Aside from being an excellent source of oxygen, it’s also great at benzene elimination. Aloe vera does not require much water but does need ample sunlight, and you need to keep it out of reach of animals.
Her majesty – The Kimberly queen fern
The Kimberly Queen’s specialty is absorbing harmful chemicals without releasing them. That’s why it’s awesome for reducing formaldehyde (a common indoor air pollutant). The Kimberly queen fern likes medium light and moist, well-drained soil. It’s also safe for your pets, which is why many eco-conscious pet owners choose it.
Feng Shui of sustainability
Environmental awareness can be a powerful tool when making home arrangements. Whether you decide to maximize space in a small home or use every inch of a bigger one, thinking green while doing it will be a financially good choice. If you listen closely to the laws of physics, you will find that you can save money and energy simply by rearranging your furniture.
If you place a bulky piece of furniture in front of your radiator, it will absorb a large portion of the heat it produces. As a result, it will take longer for your room to warm up. To save money on your energy bills, you should move that couch that is directly in front of your radiator and give it some ”space to breathe”. That way, the heat will be properly distributed and less wasted.
Many wooden instrument owners make mistakes with their poor placement in the house, making their grandma’s vintage piano just a disposable piece of wood after a while – not eco-friendly at all. Given the countless possibilities to ruin a gentle Steinway and commit eco and cultural sacrilege during moving and home arranging – it’s best to leave your bulky piano to the pros. Professional piano movers know how to move your instrument safely and efficiently.
Another unusual but eco-smart choice is making your drapes thicker. Even though lighter drapes can be more fashionable sometimes, thick drapes do a better job of being a barrier to windows. Not only will they save you from your neighbors’ curious looks, but they will also keep your home cold in summer and hot in winter.
Do you have to spend a lot to make your home more eco-friendly?
It is to be expected that, when you decide to change your current source of energy to a renewable one, it will require a certain investment. However, practice showed that new energy sources, such as solar panels, save you more money in the long term.
It’s not crucial to have a considerable amount of money to make your home more eco-friendly. As we’ve shown above, there are plenty of minor but important ways to help the environment from your home. All you really need is desire and a little adjustment—a small price to pay for a brighter future.