Friday, 14 December 2018
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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

Four Tips to Improve Home Sustainability

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 05 December 2018 09:19

With an increased awareness of our individual impacts on the planet’s health, you understandably want to improve the way that you live and decrease your personal effects on environmental health. Home sustainability is a top goal to achieve. It describes your ability to live with no impact on the environment and to be completely responsible for your waste, energy consumption, water consumption and more. Achieving home sustainability requires considerable effort and planning, but with focused attention over time, you can meet your goals. These are a few tips to focus on initially as you work toward home sustainability.

 

Reduce Water Consumption

Many people use far more water than they need to for basic functionality, sustenance and more. Fresh water is a limited resource that must be conserved. Through water conservation efforts, you can dramatically reduce water needs in your home. For example, you can hand wash dishes rather than use a dishwasher. You may also avoid taking a bath while limiting the amount of time spent in the shower. Another idea is to place a sealed jar in each water tank. By doing so, less water will be used with each flush. These are only some of many water conservation tips to follow around the house.

 

Harvest Rainwater

While reducing water consumption is critical, you also need to focus on generating water on-site rather than drawing it from the public water supply. Harvesting rainwater is a thoughtful idea. Rainwater may be used in its current condition for landscaping, washing the car, flushing toilets and more. You may also filter and purify water so that it can be used for cooking, cleaning and other activities. Because you have already taken steps to reduce water consumption, you can make the collected rainwater stretch much farther.

 

Minimize Energy Consumption

Energy consumption also requires a closer look. Living without energy in the home is impractical for most people today. You need energy for climate control, lighting, appliances and more. Numerous conservation steps can be taken to reduce energy consumption at home. For example, you can invest in the most energy efficient appliances and HVAC system, and you can use these items sparingly. Unplug all equipment that is not actively being used to avoid phantom energy use. In addition, you can weatherize your home to improve HVAC system efficiency. This may include updating and upgrading insulation, resealing doors and windows, replacing older windows and more. Keep in mind that all of the energy conservation tips mentioned do not require an adjustment in your energy consumption behaviors. You can always adjust your usage habits for further reduction in consumption at home.

 

Maximize the Use of Solar Energy

Improving your home as well as changing how you use energy at home can dramatically reduce the amount of energy that you need for comfort and convenience. However, you will still be drawing energy from the public grid. You can eliminate your reliance on public energy supply while also using green energy when you invest in solar panels or a wind energy generation system. Both of these options allow you to create your own zero-emission energy at home. Some people even generate so much energy that they send energy back to the public supply. By doing so, they may generate a small amount of additional income regularly. Research the best states for solar energy versus wind energy so that you make a smart decision about energy generation for your home.

 

Each of these steps impacts home sustainability in important ways, but these efforts will only get you started in the right direction. Consider, for example, that you may also have an environmental impact related to the foods that you eat, how you manage waste and more. Home sustainability can take many months or even years to achieve. However, as you progressively improve in these and other areas, you can reduce your impact on the environment in incredible ways.

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