Inexpensive Green Home Improvement Ideas
Economical and Inexpensive Green Home Ideas
that can Save You Money and Lower Your Family’s Carbon Footprint
By Mark J. Donovan
There are many inexpensive green home
improvement ideas that you can implement to make your home a greener home and
a more environmentally friendly place. Besides reducing your family’s carbon
footprint, inexpensive green home improvement ideas, such as those listed below,
can significantly reduce your home’s energy costs and provide for more
comfortable living conditions in and out of the home.
Doors and Windows
One of the most inexpensive green
home improvement ideas you can implement is to simply caulk around all exterior
doors and windows.
Exterior doors and windows are
major contributors to heat loss from the home. For just a few dollars
in exterior caulk and a couple of hours of work you can stop cold drafty air
from entering your home and reduce your home’s heating bills significantly.
Exterior Door and Window Weather Stripping
While caulking around the
exterior doors and windows, also consider adding door and window weather
Door and window weather stripping is easy to install and is another very
inexpensive green home idea that virtually any homeowner can afford.
Bulbs with CFL Bulbs
Another inexpensive green home
improvement idea is to replace many of your home’s incandescent light bulbs with
compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs. CFL bulbs consume 75-80% less electricity
than incandescent light bulbs. In addition, they can last up to 16 times longer
than incandescent light bulbs in some applications.
The lifetime of CFL bulbs can be
dramatically reduced if they are frequently turned on and off. Though CFL bulbs
cost several times more than standard incandescent light bulbs, their costs can
easily be recouped in many types of home lighting applications.
Wrap Hot Water
Heater with Insulation Blanket
Wrapping your home’s hot water heater
in an insulated blanket is another economical green home improvement idea as it
can reduce hot water heating costs by reducing the frequency of having to reheat
water in the hot water storage tank.
Install Low Flow
Switching to low flow toilets is
another reasonably inexpensive green home idea for reducing your home’s water
supply requirements. Low flow toilets use only about 1.1 to 1.6 gallons per
flush, compared to standard toilets, which use 3.5 to 5.0 gallons per flush. A
standard size family of 4 can save over 34,000 gallons a year in water
consumption by switching from an old 5 gallons/flush toilet to a 1.1
Install More Attic
Another affordable green home
improvement idea is to install additional insulation in the attic. Most attics
are under insulated, and that’s a real shame when you consider that attics are a
major contributor to heat loss. Warm air rises, so when it hits the upper level
ceilings it can easily find its way up and out through the attic. In addition,
attic doors and ladders are major culprits for allowing heat to escape into the
attic. Make sure you inspect your attic for proper insulation and to add more
insulation if required. In northern latitudes the Department of Energy
recommends R-49 insulation in the attic, and in southern latitudes it recommends
R-38. Also apply weather stripping around attic doors and ladders.
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