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Easy Steps - Going Green

C Jenkinson | 24 June, 2021


          
            Easy Steps - Going Green

If you'd like to start going green, it helps to have some guidance as to where to begin. After all, people have various degrees of "green-ness" in their lives, and everyone has to begin somewhere. Here are some tips on getting started.

Recycle

This basic move is a good place to start. If you're not currently recycling - perhaps it sounds too overwhelming - you can start by contacting your local waste management/garbage collection system. There may be a program in place already, and you only have to put your recycling in a special container at the curb. Alternatively, find out if there is a recycling center nearby where you can drop off your recycling. 

Save Energy

Give your home an energy audit. Make sure your windows and doors are insulated - use weather stripping to seal up the space between the window or door and the wall. Check your attic and make sure it's thoroughly insulated as well. 

If you haven't done it already, change your conventional bulbs to CFLs (compact fluorescent lights), and install inexpensive timers on your lamps.

Heating and Cooling

One of the biggest energy users in the home is the heating and cooling system. If you can, install a timer on your home's thermostat. This simple step can really save on heating and cooling bills. Another way to help preserve energy use is to keep the filter on your system clean. Change it at least every 60 days.  

In the summer, try not to flip the AC on when the first warm day comes along. Use fans in open windows to draw in cool, night-time air, and then take the fans out of the windows as the day heats up. Fans, even running continually, do not use as much electricity as central air conditioning.

In the winter, take some simple steps to boost your home's warmth. Open curtains and blinds to let warm winter sunlight into the house. Turn the thermostat down at night, use safe space heaters around the house, and close the vents in unused rooms.

Water Use

Another simple step toward greening your life is to conserve water. Shorten your showers a little at a time, and if you pre-rinse your dishes before running the dishwasher, rinse the whole sink full of dishes, turn off the water, and then load the dishwasher. There are other simple water-saving tips you can implement as well, such as the installation of a rain barrel and only running the dishwasher and washing machine when they are full.