Carbon Footprint, It is all Common Sense!
Carbon Footprint – You do not have to do an expensive remodel of your home to reduce your carbon footprint. There are simple and effective ways to reduce your energy consumption, waste, and so forth. Here are some tips.
1. Insulate your home
Most of us think of the fluffy pink fiberglass stuff when we hear “insulation.” That image alone is enough to turn many people away from doing insulating work! But there are a great many more options available these days for insulating your home. There are natural insulation’s made from wool, straw bales, newspaper, and other eco-friendly materials.
Start with your attic and make sure there are not any cracks under the eaves or along the attic floor. Seal leaks before applying insulation. Yes, this will take some time and money, but it will save a great deal on utility bills and will increase your home’s value. And it reduces your carbon footprint!
2. Seal doors and windows
Weather stripping is a very inexpensive way to seal cracks around doors and windows. It comes in various thicknesses and widths, and is easy to apply. Sealing doors and windows really helps reduce heat loss in the winter and cool air loss in the summer. If you have a garage door, be sure it gets the weather-stripping treatment too. It reduces your carbon footprint.
3. Let the sunshine in
In the winter, make the most of sunny windows by raising shades and opening curtains. While drawing blinds and curtains at night saves energy, opening them to let in sunlight in the daytime helps heat your home with a renewable energy source – the sun.
If you have electric heat, be sure to turn down your thermostat at night or when you are not home. Using less energy means a smaller carbon footprint.
4. Seal all cracks
Caulk can be used to seal cracks between your home’s siding and the foundation, and it can also be used around doors and windows. It is not expensive, and is easy for the average homeowner to apply. Better sealed house equals a lower carbon footprint.
5. Indoor lighting
Energy-efficient lighting is now affordable and available to all homeowners. Thanks to compact fluorescent bulbs that will fit into light sockets formerly occupied by incandescent bulbs, replacing your existing incandescents with compact fluorescents is easy. You will have the same (or more, depending on the bulb) light for a lot less electricity. And, because compact fluorescents last so much longer than incandescents, there is less waste involved with their use. Be sure to take your burned-out compact fluorescents to your local Home Depot or other retailer that has a recycling program.
Now that digital lights have been reduced in cost, you can save even more in the long run by converting to them. I have Digital security lights on my house powered by solar. Talk about lowering your carbon footprint.
Remember the basic but important step of turning out the light(s) when you leave a room.
6. Hang clothes up to dry
Just because it’s cold outside doesn’t mean you can’t hang your clothes up to dry. In fact, hanging wet laundry indoors is an excellent way to increase the humidity in homes where the air is very dry in the winter. The clothes dryer uses a lot of electricity, and giving it a rest will decrease your consumption quite a bit. Viola, reduced carbon footprint.
Look for the Energy Star on appliances when buying new – this means the appliance is up to government standards in energy efficiency. Some retailers are engaging in appliance trade-in programs, where you can trade your old appliance in and get a more energy-efficient one for a lower price. There are also tax credits connected with the purchase of energy efficient appliances. There has never been a better time to upgrade your kitchen and laundry room! Updating your appliances in this manner will reduce your carbon footprint.
So use some of these common sense solutions to reduce your carbon footprint; to prepare for winter and save you loads of cash every day.