The environment is a popular topic of discussion in just about every city in America. Many people wonder what they can do make their houses more environmentally friendly and efficient. You can employ quite a few ideas and practices to help achieve an environmentally friendly house. The great news is that many of these steps require no more effort than you already put into your home.
The most important thing you can do to make sure you have an efficient and environmentally friendly house is to reduce the amount of energy you use to heat and cool your home. The first thing is to make sure your home has enough insulation for your climate. The more insulation you have, the less energy you will waste trying to replace heated or cooled air that escapes when there is not enough insulation in your attic, walls, and basement.
Also, check your home for drafty windows and doors and take steps to reduce the draft or stop it all together. Look at the thresholds of the exterior doors. Are they airtight? If not, you could be losing significant amounts of heat in the winter and allowing hot air to sneak right in during the summer. Replace worn or cracked caulking around windows and doors and make sure that you have window coverings (a.k.a. curtains or blinds) inside to cut down on drafts as well.
Consider replacing your old appliances with models that meet the E.P.A.'s standards on energy efficiency. Look for the Energy Star Label the next time you need to purchase a big-ticket appliance and you will see the energy savings right there on the label. Many times, Energy Star Appliances can pay for themselves through the savings they create year in and year out.
Keep your furnace and air conditioner clean and well maintained. A dirty furnace, heat pump, or air conditioner is less efficient than one that's clean. Dirty heating, air, and ventilations units will cause your energy consumption to skyrocket. Change the air filters on a regular basis and have your heating and cooling system regularly inspected to insure that they are operating at peak performance.
Just a few simple steps can help turn your energy hog house into one of the most environmentally friendly and efficient houses on the block. On top of simple things like turning a light off when leaving a room or installing fluorescent light bulbs the steps mentioned above can help save the earth and save you some valuable cash as well!