Adding Solar to your home

Today nearly everything inside any home can be connected to the internet and wirelessly controlled, and energy-efficient. These technologies can help you save time and money, but they can also help you reduce your carbon footprint on the world we live in. They work to make the home greener, and the world a better place overall. Plus, they’re pretty cool to use and watch in action.

With so many products on the market today, it is hard to tell which is going to come with the most benefit. Using this quick guide, you can have a better idea of what products your home can benefit from and which might just make your home greener after all.

1. Programmable, Wirelessly Controlled Thermostats

Thermostats that can be programmed to be specific temperatures at specific times throughout the day are helpful in many ways.

Having cooler temperatures at night and while you’re away can help to reduce the amount that the furnace runs. If it is warm out, keeping the house at a comfortable, higher temperature can also save money and energy.

If possible, choosing a system that allows you to wirelessly control the temperature of your home from your smartphone is ideal. You can change the temperature at any point from wherever you are.

2. Energy-Efficient Appliances

Appliances that are rated as energy-efficient provide many energy saving benefits.They can save the homeowner money, but they are also doing their part to cut back on the amount of energy used. The carbon footprint that you put out into the world can be reduced a bit by choosing high-quality Energy Star rated appliances.

3. Solar Panel Energy

Solar panels are becoming more and more popular. With many states offering incentives for those that make the switch, many more families are deciding to be the first on the block to do so. Easily able to be installed on top of any home, they are a great way to increase those energy savings, though the cost may be larger in the beginning to get started, while also doing your part to make your home greener and more environmentally friendly.

4. Smart Lights Throughout the Home

Smart lights use less energy to light a home and they reduce the amount that a homeowner would spend. In fact, the average household spends about 5% of their energy budget to lighting alone. If you can reduce the amount of energy that is needed to provide this lighting, you can reduce bills and the carbon footprint on the earth.

Replace those old bulbs with CFLs or LEDs to get the best energy savings.

5. Solar Hot Water Heater

Traditional hot water heaters require gas or electricity in order to run. However, this requires a lot of energy and gas causes emissions to go into the atmosphere, causing a bigger environmental problem. Choosing a solar hot water heater can help you make the smartest choice when replacing water systems in the home. You can essentially save up to 60% or more on your hot water energy usage.

6. Install Water Aerators

Aerators help to increase or maintain the amount of oxygen saturation that is in the water in a system. This can be done in any environment with the use of a product that helps to provide aeration. By doing this, it improves the water quality, it breaks down bacteria that might be in the water, and it can help reduce the need for other systems to clean the water. These are an affordable way to have better quality water.

7. Consider a Geothermal Heat Pump

Geothermal heat pumps are a green technology that continues to provide welcoming benefits to homes across the country. The heat exchange that comes with this unit is buried underground. This helps the system run much more efficiently and effectively for the homeowner, saving much more money and also reducing the amount of waste entering the atmosphere. These systems can be more expensive to install at first, but the savings over the life of the system and the green benefits pay you back in time.

8. Backyard Wind Turbine

These turbines work in the same way that larger-scaled turbines or windmills work, except they are scaled down in size. Even if you have solar panels installed on your home, this might not produce enough energy to fully provide your home with the electricity that it needs. Adding a small wind turbine in the backyard can pick up some of the slack that the panels are not providing.

Another thing to keep in mind is that not every area is ideal for wind turbines. The area has to have wind speeds of at least 5mph. In order to find out if your area is good for this, there is a map on the US Department of Energy’s website that shows which area is ideal for these wind turbines.

9. Smart Power Strips

Smart power strips keep you in control, while also reducing the amount of energy that is being consumed by the outlet and item plugged in. A lot of people do not know about vampire energy or power. When items in the home are plugged into an outlet, such as the television or computer they use energy even while they are off. This phantom energy costs the household a lot of money without them even knowing it. The only way to stop the phantom energy from happening is by unplugging the item that is using this energy. This is not practical for many because the plugs may be hidden behind furniture. Smart power strips help to power off the electronics so this phantom energy is no longer being used and paid for.

10. Upgraded Window Replacements

Window replacements are ideal when there are leaks throughout the home. These are affordable replacements that can go into the home and provide a comfortable environment. They can also reduce the amount of time your furnace runs, while also saving money in energy bills. Make sure these are installed by a professional replacement window company.

Other Steps to Become Greener

Switching to greener energy is becoming a huge step in the right direction and additional steps can be taken to keep the home as green as possible.

  • Collecting rain water in barrels to use for various needs in and outside of the home
  • Installing low-flow or dual-flush toilets throughout the home
  • Composting to reduce the amount of waste that goes into landfills while also helping your garden grow through the nutrients provided from the compost
  • Shower for shorter periods of time to save water
  • Switch to renewable items throughout the home such as baggies, napkins, paper towels, etc.
  • Recycle more
  • Cut out plastics and buy less water bottles
  • Walk or ride your bike as much as possible instead of driving to where you need to go and if you must drive, do a carpool or take public transport to where you need to go

The energy used throughout homes in the United States was on an incline, but since the introduction of many new technological advancements, it is steadily declining. These advancements are allowing so many homeowners to save more money in their energy bills, but also do so much to help the environment and the earth we live on.

Author Bio: Patrick Bailey is a professional writer mainly in the fields of mental health, addiction, and living in recovery. He attempts to stay on top of the latest news in the addiction and the mental health world and enjoy writing about these topics to break the stigma associated with them. Patrick is currently a writer for Mountain Springs Recovery as well as on his own blog.