Sustainable Living for Beginners: Six Easy Ways to Go Green in Your Home

Even if you don’t have the money to spend on appliance upgrades to green your home, you can still make some very effective changes without spending the cash.  Many of these changes will save you money that could then be used for upgrades to green appliances in the future.  Regardless, you can successfully go green in your home by making any or all of these six simple changes:

  1. Start the greening process by changing five light bulbs in your home and replacing them with more energy efficient bulbs.  It is best to pick the five light fixtures that are most often used.  If you are feeling particularly ambitious, change them all.  Regardless, just by changing five lights to energy efficient bulbs, you will be reducing the amount of green house gases put out by your home a substantial amount.  If every household did this, it would be the equivalent of taking 10 million cars off the road each year.
  2. Heat and cool your home effectively.  This means that you can improve both the heating and cooling systems’ efficiency by cleaning air filters regularly.  You should also provide for regular tune-ups on the heating and cooling equipment so that they are more effective, thus providing hot and cool air as needed while reducing energy consumption.
  3. Seal and insulate your home as best you can.  There are numerous, simple DIY projects for insulating your home that can provide for a much cozier, energy-efficient space.  If you have the money for this one, it would greatly benefit your insulating efforts to get new, energy efficient windows.
  4. Use green power whenever possible.  This means finding ways to incorporate environmentally friendly electricity from alternative sources like wind and sun.  You can either buy the necessary equipment or make a creative project out of modifying your home yourself.  This could include installing DIY solar panels.
  5. A push mower on a nicely cut green lawn

    Photo by One Tree Hill Studios

    You can green your yard by switching to a push mower.  While the results may not be as pretty and clean cut, it is actually better for your grass.  The left over grass shavings can provide nutrients to your lawn as they decompose and you won’t use any energy other than your own to run the mower.

  6. Conserve water in your home.  Saving water, especially hot water can lower green house gas emissions.  For every four minutes of shower time you use between 20 and 40 gallons of water.  Leaky toilets can waste up to 200 gallons of water a day.  By taking shorter showers, using less hot water and making sure your toilet is functioning properly you can not only save water but reduce the energy used to provide it for your home.

These are all simple ways to upgrade your home lifestyle to a green one without the burden of buying all new appliances, but this is most certainly not all.  If you have the time and/or the money there are larger, more impactful changes you can make.  It’s up to you, but by making energy conservation a priority you will not only help the planet-  you will also inevitably help yourself.

About the author: Jenni Sunde is a freelance fashion writer and pop culture junkie. Jenni specializes in all things lifestyle-related. From home and design to health and beauty. With her love of art and all things beautiful, she delights in sharing her sense of style from her life to your computer monitor. Her title pegs her as an editor at a website that specializes in providing people with car insurance quotes, but her passion leads her into writing with a little more substance and a lot more heart.

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