10 Things To Make your Home/Remodel Greener

April 30, 2016

Posted on November 13, 2012

  1. Design to maximize natural daylight and passive ventilation. Daylight makes a dramatic difference, especially in our climate. In addition to making you feel better, daylight can cut down on electric bills. Well-placed operable windows circulate fresh air throughout your home.
  2. Choose deconstruction and construction site recycling. The demolition debris from a typical residential kitchen or bathroom remodel equals by weight, four years of curbside recycling from an average household. Deconstruction is the selective hand-disassembly of building structures to maximize salvage for reuse. Minimize the impacts of your project, keep reusable and recyclable materials out of the landfill, and save costs, too.
  3. Weatherize. Adding insulation and new, energy-efficient windows to an older home not only saves money in fuel costs, it improves comfort all year.
  4. Buy energy-efficient kitchen appliances, furnaces and water heaters. All appliances with an “Energy Star” rating are a good choice. You can claim tax credits on some appliances.
  5. Choose water-efficient fixtures. On average, toilet flushing, showers and faucets account for 60% of all indoor water use. Installing efficient toilets, faucet aerators and showerheads can save a typical household up to $200 annually in water and energy bills.
  6. Use low-VOC paint (50 grams/liter or less VOC content). Insist on solvent free or low-VOC (volatile organic chemicals) paint. Low and no VOCs will make painting a healthier and more enjoyable experience. If oil paints are being used, relocate until you home is free of fumes.
  7. Choose formaldehyde-free products. Formaldehyde is a suspected carcinogen and is commonly found in carpet, cabinetry, insulation and other building products. Consider installing a hard surface floor instead of carpet. If you do install carpeting, install a green rated product.
  8. Buy used, recycled, certified or regraded wood products. You can purchase used and regraded wood from a ReBuilding Center. Certified wood producrts are cut from sustainably managed forests, and affixed with a seal to help you indentify them.
  9. Harvest your rainwater for irrigation and toilet flushing. A well-designed rainwater harvesting system that capturees rainwater from rooftops for use in irrigation and toilet flushing can reduce annual water consumption by 50%.
  10. Landscape using native and drought-tolerant plants. Native plants are naturally adapted to our environment, so they require minimal care and watering, they also provide valuable habitat for birds and wildlife.
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