Green Remodeling Tips

Green Remodeling Tips: Building Green, Natural Air, Save Energy and Energy saving tips.

Green Remodeling Tips - 20 Home Design Tips

Learn energy saving techniques such as natural air conditioning, water conservation and much more with these save energy tips.

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  • Green Tips 1-6
  • Green Tips 7-14
  • Green Tips 15-20
Bookmark and Share Subscribe Green Remodeling Tip 1:
Install a Programmable Thermostat

Use this easy green remodeling tip to adjust your home's temperature while you sleep. If your home is empty all day, you can turn your air off or your heat way down and set it to kick back on shortly before you arrive home in the evening, saving energy. The controllers available now allow precise programming for each day of the week, and weekends too.

Save Water

Lux TX9000TS

Green Living Made Easy prefers either the Honeywell RTH7600B or the Lux Products TX9000TS Touch Screen 7 Day Programmable Thermostat for their ease of use and reliable design.

Programmable thermo states are especially useful if you go away for a few days and want to return to a comfortable home. Using one of these thermostats will allow you to set the temperature lower that you would otherwise - saving money and energy usage. If you have a water-source heat pump or hydronic heating, it's important to note that you shouldn't bother turning it down for short periods of time. The recovery time is too long to make short absences worthwhile.

Green Remodeling Tip 2:
Install Water Conserving Aerators

Faucet Aerator Installing a Aerator is a very simple green remodeling tip that you can easily manage on your own.

Aerators are cheap and they simply screw onto your kitchen or lavatory faucets. The advantage is that they dramatically reduce water flow. You can even install them on shower heads to regulate water flow in the shower.

Compact Flourescent Bulb Green Remodeling Tip 3:
Install Compact Fluorescent Bulbs

Use CFL's in all your lamps and recessed can lighting.

Possibly the easiest change to make, changing to CFL's can save you a large amount of money over time. Simply by substituting the correct size CFL for your incandescent lamps, you can save up to 70% of electricity usage while enjoying the same light output. You also get vastly improved bulb life when compared to incandescent sources.

Green Remodeling Tip 4:
Clean your refrigerator coils

Here's another easy item that you can do on your own. Just roll out your refrigerator, unplug it, and thoroughly clean off the coils in the back. Clean coils are much more efficient, saving energy on this important kitchen appliance. Even better, it leads to a longer life span for your refrigerator.

Compact Flourescent Bulb Green Remodeling Tip 5:
Insulate your hot water piping

Install Foam Insulation over all of your exposed hot water piping. The foam is inexpensive and will pay for itself in a few short years. It's widely available for all pipe sizes. Installing it is as simple as splitting it open at the pre-formed split, fitting it around the piping, and sealing with tape.

Prefab elbows are also available to cover joints. However, you can save yourself some work while retaining most of the benefit by forgoing the joints and concentrating on the long pipe runs themselves.

This simple measure saves both water and energy. Because the water returning to the heater is still warm. reheating it takes less time - and energy.

Buy A Retractable Clothes Line Retractable Clothes Line Green Remodeling Tip 6:
Add a clothes line outside your home

A Retractable Clothes Line is a great way to save a lot of energy. You'll keep your dryer turned off and enjoy fresh-smelling laundry. There are several retractable models that mount easily on the side of a house and can be hidden when not in use. Just pull out the spring-loaded lines when you need them and they neatly retract back when you are through. You can completely hide these units by placing them them behind a fascia or in a soffit to conceal them.

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Install Mulch to Conserve Water Install Mulch To Conserve Water Green Remodeling Tip 7:
Install mulch in your planting beds

Installing a 3" to 6" layer of wood chips or other mulch in your landscape beds can be a great way to lower your overall water usage. Mulch is actually good on a number of other levels as well:

Mulch holds in moisture for longer periods of time
Mulch stunts weed growth.
Provides compost material to your soil as it decomposes
Gives your landscape beds a touch of class and neatness
Allows you do conceal a drip irrigation system to further reduce water usage
Smart Irrigation Controller By Rainbird Smart Irrigation Controller By Rainbird Green Remodeling Tip 8:
Install a Smart Irrigation Controller

If you use a home irrigation system and have an older controller, chances are that today's newer models have extra features that will make life easier for you, while making a big difference in your water bills. Green Living Made Easy Likes the Rain Bird Irrigation Systems Manager Series 9-Station 3-Program Indoor Automatic Sprinkler System Timer With Rain Sensor #ISM-9RS

These controller are getting so smart that they can:

Vary watering needs by season
Vary watering needs of drip vs. overhead sprays
Detect rain and adjust irrigation proportionally
Detect wind to delay watering until wind subsides

Compact Flourescent Bulb Green Remodeling Tip 9: Install Energy Star ceiling fans in all occupied spaces

While this may take the services of an electrical contractor to install the wiring and junction boxes, it is well worth the time and effort. You can circulate the air in your home much better and provide a more comfortable living experience. Also, in the warm months, on those windless days, switching on the fan will help you to endure 90 degree days in comfort.

Be sure to install an Energy Star Rated Ceiling Fan to reduce electricity consumption. Try to choose a multi-speed fan that will allow you to easily set the speed that's best for you.

Green Remodeling Tip 10:
Start a Compost Pile

Save a lot on fertilizer costs by starting a compost pile. You'll also save energy in the kitchen and water. Refer to our easy-to-use guide on How to Compost. Soon, you'll be generating enough to service your organic vegetable garden or your landscaping beds.

Green Cleaners Use Green Cleaners Green Remodeling Tip 11:
Utilize green cleaners wherever you can

Green cleaners are available everywhere now. Select the best ones for glass, bathroom cleaning, and many other cleaning chores.

Milky Spore Grub Control Green Remodeling Tip 12:
Kill insects naturally

This is a great green remodeling tip. Check out our guide on Organic Insect Control. You'll learn how to control many lawn and garden pests and insects in a natural and responsible manner. In most cases, organic methods works much better than all the chemicals we put on our yards. The bonus is a better-looking landscape that's healthy for your family and pets.

Control pests like moles with Milky Spore Powder and deer and rabbits with Liquid Fence. Various other insect controls are available, and you can rest assured that all our tips are organic.

Green Remodeling Tip 13:
Reduce your toilet tank water capacity

Think you need to replace all your toilets with the new water-saving toilets? Not necessarily. With this green remodeling tip, just use this handy little device in your toilet tank.

Fill it with clean water, seal it up, and set it in your toilet tank. It's called the Toilet Tank Bank. Get one for each of your toilets and save a tremendous amount of water that adds up with each flush.

Green Remodeling Tip 14:
Reduce your dishwasher cycle length

With the power scrubbing abilities of newer dishwashers, you should be able to quickly clean off the worst of your food waste before placing dishes in the dishwasher by giving them a quick rinse. Eliminate the pre-rinse cycle on the dishwasher and save a LOT of water in the process. Make sure to add leftover food to your compost pile!

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Green Remodeling Tip 15:
Place additional insulation in your attic

You've probably heard this green remodeling tip before, but adding insulation is always a wise and economical thing to do. It saves vast amounts of energy and is usually quick and simple for a homeowner to do. Consider using an organic insulation such as blown-in insulation (cellulose, which is ground-up newspapers) with non-toxic insect and fire retardants added. Another eco-friendly option is insulation made from cotton scraps, known as cotton insulation. It is a recycled product and is very eco friendly.

Check into the home insulation energy credit available for this one too. The EPA lists that installation of home insulation may make you eligible for 30% of the cost, or a maximum of $1,500 in the form of a tax credit. Not too shabby!

Install a Solar Water System Install a Solar Water System Green Remodeling Tip 16:
Install a solar water heating system

Solar water heating systems have been proven to save a lot of money in gas or electric bills, depending on the type of water heater you have. Whole systems cost in the range of $6,500 to $8,500, installed. Unless you live in an area along coastal waters where you have a lot of cloud cover throughout the year, you will realize big energy savings on this one.

The EPA in now offering a tax credit of 30% of the cost of an installed system if placed in service before December 31, 2016. Also check out tax credits for your home state and local municipalities - you may find you will have a great deal of your installation and material costs covered by tax credits.

Green Remodeling Tip 17:
Install a Geo-Thermal Heat Pump System

These are tremendously efficient systems, Especially for cooling. Typical ratings for a closed loop system are EER> 14.1 and COP>3.3 Open loops are better yet with EER> 16.2 and COP  3.6.

I personally installed an open loop system 20 years ago when these systems first became popular. Mine is not nearly as efficient as today's systems, but is extremely efficient compared to a gas-fired system. I have an open-loop system, which means that we pump water from a deep well and drain it in a pond, creek, or other water source. What did I do with my water? I made a giant koi pond, which is a beautiful addition to my yard. An added benefit is that the water stays open all year long with no freeze over.

GeoThermal Heatpump System GeoThermal Heat Pump System

A geothermal system is an all-electric system, which eliminates the need to install a gas line into your home. That means no possibility of gas fumes or open flames.

Currently the Federal Government is offering a 30% tax credit on geo-thermal systems installed prior to December 31, 2016. Local and state tax credit may also be available to some - it's definitely worth checking in to!

Green Remodeling Tip 18:
Small Wind Energy Systems

If you live in an area where you can make use of considerable wind power, (check the wind maps HERE) you cans save between 20 to 30% on your electric bills by installation a small residential wind generator. Many of the units available are quiet and unobtrusive. Many home owner's associations are starting to see the benefits of these systems, so approval may be easier than you think.

Skystream 3.7 Small Residential Wind Turbine Skystream 3.7 Small Residential Wind Turbine

Look for the next generation of wind generators coming on the market soon, such as horizontal axis wind generators and wind wings.

Currently the Federal Government is offering a 30% tax credit on installed small residential wind generation systems as long as they are installed prior to December 31, 2016. Local and state tax credit may be available in addition to the federal credits.

The drawback on wind generator is they must be maintained. Although the maintenance is quite simple, such as keeping the bearing lubricated, it can not be overlooked.

Green Remodeling Tip 19:
Solar Photovoltaic Systems

This is another great electricity producing system, that may be worthwhile if you get a reasonable amount of sunshine where you live. These systems are relatively expensive and the technology has not changed all that much in the past few years. There have been some advancements in efficiencies, but I wouldn't wait for them to make huge advances on this front. Look for costs to come down as production ramps up.

Maintenance is almost zero on these systems and they have a very long life, so payback is assured. You can mount them on a grade mounded post or rack, or even place them on your roof on an unobstructed roof surface. Just be sure they are installed as recommended to ensure maximum efficiency.

Cool Tip! Check with your local power company to see if net metering is available in your area. This will allow you to connect renewable energy sources to the power grid, banking electricity to use when needed. What this means is that you don't need to mess with expensive batteries.

Currently the Federal Government is offering a 30% tax credit on installed small residential wind generation systems as long as they are installed prior to December 31, 2016. Additional local and state tax credit may be available in addition to what the federal government if offering.