As a homeowner, every choice you make has an impact on the world around you. In today’s landscape, where everything is seen through an eco-friendly lens, the decisions you make regarding how to operate your house can be considered from the perspective of how they will impact the environment as a whole. From the equipment you use for heating and cooling to the landscaping you have around the property and much more, it all plays a role in your environmental impact.
This article will highlight some of the many eco-friendly practices that all homeowners should at least consider. If any of the changes you decide to make require the help of an HVAC company, Berico is the right choice for the job. Take a moment to get in touch today and learn more about the possibilities.
Switch to LED Lighting
As one of the easiest possible ways to improve your home’s performance and make it more eco-friendly, consider switching all of the lights in the house to LEDs. With LED lighting, you get excellent lighting performance, versatility in the look and feel of your lights, and dramatically lower energy consumption. Traditional light bulbs use a ton of energy for how much light they actually produce, but the story is different with LEDs. You will notice on your power bill that less electricity is being used to light up the house, yet it will be lighter than ever before.
Cutting down on power consumption is a great start, but that’s not where the benefits end with LEDs. These kinds of lights are also incredibly durable and long-lasting, so you will very rarely need to replace your LEDs once the switch has been made. That means purchasing new lighting on only a rare occasion, and it will also be nice not to need to access your fixtures that are harder to reach and require a ladder or pole to swap out the bulb.
Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat
Reducing energy usage is one of the biggest components of being eco-friendly as a household. That point was already addressed above with switching to LED lights, and it can go a step further by making the change to a smart thermostat to control your HVAC system. When an HVAC system is tied to a smart thermostat, it can be operated optimally to make sure the house is heated and cooled as needed without any wasted energy along the way.
As was seen with LEDs, this is an upgrade that doesn’t just help your home be more environmentally friendly but also makes it a more comfortable, convenient place to live. With a smart thermostat, you can easily set programs that dictate how your HVAC system operates, and you can even operate the whole thing through your smartphone. Given the modest cost of modern smart thermostats, this is another switch that is easy to make.
Strategic Landscaping to Save Water
It’s not all about energy consumption to do your part for the planet. Cutting back on how much water is used on the property is another good step, especially during the summer months when certain types of landscaping require a lot of water – and that resource can be at a premium.
Consider switching up your landscaping to include more area that doesn’t have to be watered all throughout the summer months. Even if you are going to continue to have a lot of grassy areas on your property, you could work on balancing out the landscape so there are also large areas that don’t need any water at all. “Natural Areas” have become very stylish in some circles, and they can also be quite attractive. This switch benefits the environment as well as your bank account – it can be expensive to water a vast yard of grass; so save that money and do the planet a favor at the same time.
Upgrade Your Appliances
Modern appliances use less energy than older models. If you have some old appliances in your house and have noticed that they seem to draw quite a bit of power, consider upgrading to new models to bring down your power use and get better performance at the same time. The cost of new appliances will be a bit of an initial outlay of money at the start, but you’ll gradually benefit from that expense as your appliances use less energy month after month moving forward.
Adding Power Generation
This last point is one that is certainly more dramatic than the other steps and might not be for everyone, because of the initial cost. To be sure, this option is one of the most powerful things you can do to make your house eco-friendly, but it is a sizable project. To make a major move to help the environment around you, consider adding solar panels to the roof of your house to make your own power and reduce your reliance on the grid.
Solar power technology has come a long way in recent years. Modern solar panels are able to grab as much available energy from sunlight as possible, and that energy can be captured and fed back into your home. For all of the power that you can create on your roof, you won’t need to draw that equal amount of power out of the grid. Therefore, your energy bill goes down, as does the footprint you leave on the energy system in your area. To accurately do the environmental impact though you do need to consider the impact on the environment of building the solar panels and then of disposing of them after their useful lifespan. Most calculations of the reduced carbon footprint that you will find online do not fully consider the full consequences of solar energy. This is a big step to take, and there will be a meaningful initial expense to consider, but those who are serious about being eco-friendly will at least want to take a look at this option and make a fully informed decision.
You don’t have to make dramatic moves to become more eco-friendly as a homeowner. It might be best to make small, steady changes over time to improve the way your house treats the surrounding environment without putting too much of a burden on you or your family. If a new furnace installation or another HVAC project is on your agenda as part of this process, be sure to check in with Berico right from the start. You’ll be in good hands!