Being Kinder To Our Planet And To Our Bottom Line: Part One

Our planet is all we really have; without it we will cease to exist. Yet we continue to abuse our greatest gift. Some (large companies) pilfer our planet simply for greed; others (mankind in general) pilfer it because they do not know any better. The clocks are chiming and the wake up calls have been sent out, we just need to stop long enough to hear them ringing. Our planet is in desperate need of our help. We cannot accomplish this on our own or within a day, but by starting at home, one step at a time, we can make a difference.

The term Energy Efficiency should not be a phrase we hear only on the News, it should be a lifestyle that we choose to adhere to. It should be your home’s new fashion statement. With the economy being what it is, the excuses are over; if you want your dollar to last longer then you should definitely find the time to adjust your lifestyle at home.

The following is a list of products you can integrate into your home. All these products can be picked up at your local Home Depot and installed in one weekend, saving you money and helping our planet.

Light Bulbs

  • You can start by replacing the existing light bulbs in your home to CFL Bulbs. CFL stands for Compact Florescent Light. CFL bulbs consume up to 75% less energy and they last up to 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs. They will reduce your energy cost at the end of every month. If all homeowners in this country were to change their five most frequently used light fixtures with energy star qualified fixtures and/or bulbs there would be a savings of about $8 billion in energy cost to this country.

Thermostat

  • The second most efficient way to save on both cost and energy is by replacing your existing thermostat. You may say to yourself, “the one I have at home is fine and I do not need to spend time or money on replacing something that is not broken”. That is where you are mistaken. Replacing your manual thermostat to a programmable thermostat can save you $150 or more on your energy bill at the end of the year. A programmable thermostat allows 4 program periods per day (each day of the week can be different) and can regulate your HVAC according to your schedule and lifestyle.

 Motion Activated Light Control/Sensor

  • My children have a habit of going into the bathroom, turning on the light and leaving it on after they finish. Obviously this is a waste of energy. With a motion sensor, the light turns on when they enter the room and turns off when they leave. If you need to have the light on for an extended period of time, the ON/OFF switch permits normal ON/OFF operation.

Eco Dimmers

Replacing switches with dimmers conserves energy and adds fewer light bulbs to landfills. In eco mode, you can save at least 15% on energy and extend the life of your bulb as compared to using a standard switch. You can install a dimmer in as little as 15 minutes.

Timers

Timers are convenient and save you money. You can automatically control the time your air conditioner, holiday lights, indoor lamps and even lawn and garden lights turn on and off without being at home.

  • If you do not have central air conditioning, you can program your air conditioner to turn itself on a half-hour before you get home so that it is cool when you walk in from a long day of work.
  • You can also program it to turn off during the early morning hours. It’s also useful to use with door lamps when you are away on vacation to give the illusion that someone is home. Best of all, when utilized correctly timers are sure to save you money on your energy costs.

Shower Heads

  • To save our planet’s precious resources while also saving on our monthly utility bills, Moen now provides water-saving faucets. These environmentally friendly faucets, which are offered in both standard and upgraded KB Home kitchens and baths, are designed to conserve water in everyday use without compromising performance

Sealant

  • Sealing your home is not just for keeping the cold out during winter, but for keeping the cold in during summer. Check all your doors, windows and moldings for cracks

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