How Green Living Will Pay You Back

July 15, 2009 by  
Filed under Go Green Home

Green living is more than just a hot new trend. It’s a way to live more responsibly so that the resources we have on our planet will be clean and green for our children and grandchildren. If that’s not enough reason to develop green habits for your home, there’s another one that is especially beneficial in uncertain economic times like these.

Making green living choices to reduce energy consumption and reduce waste will almost certainly translate into money savings for your household in reduced energy bills. Here are some tips to get started to live in a way that is environmentally friendly and economically smart.

1. Change your light bulbs. Compact fluorescent lights, or CFLS, are one of the best investments you can make for a green home. They cost a little more but you will receive a return on your investment and more when you consider that they use 75% less electricity than traditional light bulbs and last as much as 10 times as long

2. Green up your thermostat usage. If everyone would just keep the thermostat turned down a few degrees in cold weather and up a few degrees in hot weather, the energy savings would be mind blowing. The difference wouldn’t be enough to effect comfort level, but would be plenty enough to be eco-friendly. If your home is empty for large amounts of time during the day, consider investing in a programmable thermostat. These can be set to kick on half an hour or so before someone is due to arrive home so that the temperature will be comfortable upon entering but energy won’t be wasted when no one is home.

3. Wash clothes with cold water. This is an easy way to save energy costs. Modern day laundry detergents have the same cleaning power in cold water that they do with hot. Since the majority of the energy usage consumed in running the clothes washer goes toward heating water, this small step will make your use of this appliance much more energy efficient.

4. Air dry your clothes. When it’s time to dry those cold-water cleaned clothes, skip the dryer unless you absolutely must use it. Clothes dryers are convenient, but are also energy hogs in the home. Besides, nothing smells as fresh as air dried clothes on a sunny day. You can also air dry them on drying racks in the laundry room or basement.

5. Become energy conservative. Try to make do with a little less in everything you do, from electricity, to food, to gas for the car. Stick to a grocery budget and shopping list and determine the difference between wants and needs. Impulsive purchases can usually be avoided if you make it a rule to wait a day and see if you still must have it. Most of the time, you will either have already forgotten about it, or won’t care anymore. Energy and money will be saved.

It’s not hard to live green, with a little planning and motivation. It only takes 30 to 40 repetitions for something new to become a habit. Start to make some of these suggestions part of your routine today, and you will be well on your way to energy savings in your pocket.