Tips For Environmentally Friendly Homes

You can get solar paneling from Home Depot. They have a Sunforce 200 Watt CIGS Solar Panel Kit, Model number 36106, Internet catalog #100677614 for $1,179.97 each. This kit contains two 100 Watt Pro Series CIGS solar panels, and comes with a 25 year limited warranty. It is a considerable initial expense, however, it will eventually save you a fortune.

Secondary glazing your windows and glass doors is a very efficient way to save heating costs in your home. You may need to upgrade to the latest energy efficient options. Even if your windows and doors have double glazed already, they may be old and not as cost effective.

Furniture can be very environmentally friendly in your home. When people redecorate they tend to sell or give away their old furniture. Buying used furniture is the best way to redecorate if you care about the environment. Used furniture does not have to look old and beat up. Thrift stores, like Goodwill, and yard sales are the best option for used furniture. You can even find some for sale online, and in your local classified advertising like Craigslist. You will save money and have earth friendly furniture. If you can’t find any used furniture that fits your style, buy some that has sustainable, renewable material like bamboo or cork.

Traditional appliances like refrigerators, washing machines and dryers have made great strides recently. In this area, buying new is the best option. The newest versions are all produced with the environment in mind. They are energy efficient and use minimal amounts of water and energy. Although the newer appliances are more expense, it is the best option for replacing your old ones. The initial cost will returned to you through energy savings. If you need to keep your old appliances, make sure that everything is working well. Leaking appliance, will waste valuable resources and money. Repair all such items as soon as possible.

There are many conscientious behaviors we can do to make our home environmentally friendly. Replace all of your light bulbs with the energy efficient ones. It’s quick, cheap and easy. You will save money, and more importantly, energy. Your temperature readings for water heaters, air conditioners, and freezers should be at the lowest settings. Unplug all appliances instead of just turning them off. Leaving appliances plugged in wasted energy and money. Only some appliances need to continue running like your refrigerator and freezer, others are not necessary to their function. Also use dimmer switches to cut down on the use of energy.

There are many cleaning products that will damage the environment. Many of us have full shelves of harsh cleaners. They are unhealthy for you and your family as well as wear down the finishes on your home’s surfaces. Research more natural cleaning alternatives, like baking soda, vinegar and lemon juice. They clean and disinfect many surfaces without the harmful effects to the environment.

Again, remember that everything old can be renewed. Search thrift shops, yard sales, antique stores, and pawn shops for artwork and other decor accessories. Consider creating your own artwork from natural materials. Use your creative imagination to create art and help the environment.

Change to a More Environmentally Friendly Home

Going green is something we might all want to consider when we are at home. Few people can say that they are living in a ‘green’ dwelling. The cost of making wholesale changes to your dwelling could prohibit the switch to a totally earth friendly house.

There are lots of different reasons for people deciding to go green. Since going green is based on a more naturally sourced way of life, it is sensible for households where anyone has allergies. If people are making the effort to live greener, what moves them to do this? Well, we can sure cross out money since becoming environmentally friendly normally ends up costing more money, not less.

One more terrific way of doing your bit for the Earth is by recycling household waste. Keep your plastic bottles and bottles made of glass separate along with papers and food cans. Depending on your place of residence, there should be a lot of available information on how to recycle your trash. If you are provided with separate bins or you need to obtain a couple yourself, simply keep plastics, paper and aluminum apart so they are not difficult to recycle. You can go green when it comes to decorating your home as well. Keep away from paints that have VOCs, which are volatile organic compounds. An eco friendly paint to use is rubber-base paint because it doesn’t release any insidious chemicals.

To be really environmentally friendly, there are some household goods you could check out. Almost all of the huge appliance producers have some type of eco friendly option. Washing machines and dish washers are now made to be environmentally friendly by using less water with every cycle. You can likewise buy toilets that do the same thing, and in the long run less water means cheaper bills as well as a better planet. How about a green oven or other home electrical products. Star ratings suggest how earth friendly a household appliance is.

Making your household more environmentally friendly can be a hard and usually a pricey project, however, in the long run, you will profit from more inexpensive bills, better health and you’ll be contributing towards a healthier environment for generations to come.

Is Spray Foam Insulation Really ‘Green’?

According to the International Organization for Standardization (IOS) the term is too vague to be meaningful. The US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) agrees, but only to a point. The USEPA created the international Energy Star program in an attempt to provide the manufacturers of goods with a voluntary labeling system for promoting energy efficient products.

In the 1990’s when the program was started, it was only applied to appliances and electronics. However, today entire homes and home offices are able to gain Energy Star certification. The only criteria is the building must use 15% less energy than a standard home built to the 2004 International Residential Code. How does a home achieve that rating? The things at the top of the list for getting an Energy Star rating are not surprising: insulation, high performance windows, tight construction and ducting, energy efficient cooling and heating systems and Energy Star certified products (appliances, lighting, water heaters).

Now, in reference to insulation specifically, its efficiency is measured according to R-value. An R-value is a mathematical calculation which produces the level of thermal resistance a building has. For the average North American home insulated with traditional fiberglass batts, R-value sits at between 3.1 and 4.3 per square inch. Blown in fiberglass insulation has a typical R-value between 2 and 4 per square inch. According to the US Department of Energy, the same home insulated with spray foam polyurethane insulation will have an R-value between 7 and 8 per square inch. Clearly a home insulated with spray foam would be well on its way to achieving an Energy Star rating, even without installing LED lighting and thermal windows.

When a building is insulated with polyurethane foam, the costs of heating and cooling will undoubtedly be vastly reduced. Many spray foam manufacturers report that energy costs can be reduced by up to 40%; a claim that is both highly likely and easily attainable. With such a diminished use of energy, there is less demand for petroleum-based products and fossil fuels, resulting in a smaller carbon footprint being left on our planet.

We are halfway to answering our title question, is spray foam insulation really green? Now we know its immense potential for energy savings, but what about the manufacture of the foam itself? In the case of spray foam, the two substances that come together to produce the foam must remain separate until the time of application. Those two things are polyol (a naturally occurring alcohol) and diisocyanate (a group of organic compounds derived from plant and animal materials). When they are brought together with water, an exothermic reaction takes place producing the polyurethane foam. Although the foam is produced from organic substances, it does not breakdown over time – a good thing for insulation applications, but where does it go when it is no longer needed?