Building For Less: The Green Kitchen
Green Can Be Easy On Your Wallet
Green building is not only great for the environment; it can be easy on your wallet as well. What used to be considered an expensive building option reserved for homeowners willing to sacrifice comfort and aesthetic appeal is now becoming a logical and economical choice for any lifestyle. Here at Action Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning and Electric, Inc., we are convinced that new design can be both Green and affordable.
Green building doesn't have to be more expensive than standard building, and this is really true if we're discussing renovations. Architects and designers alike are discovering that there are more and more products coming on the market all the time from pressed paper countertops to denim insulation.
A green-built kitchen can save a lot of money, cutting water, energy and product replacement costs. We believe that this is so important that we have some tips on how to make it possible. Keeping your kitchen friendly to the environment, as well as to your bank account.
- Installing Water saving fixtures - Install low-flow faucets and faucet aerators. Touchless faucets help prevent waste by dispensing only what's needed, and hot-water faucets eliminate the need to run the water as it heats. Most manufacturers have come up with wonderful designs that can be used in any styled kitchen and bathroom updates.
- Consider Using Floors & Cabinets - Use materials that are rapidly replenished and locally available, such as bamboo, wheat straw, or cork. Sustainable is green anyway you look at it. Finding products that are being manufactured locally will make a product greener by limiting the amount of oil used for transportation. These sustainable and rRapidly renewable materials like bamboo, wheat straw and cork are great for floors and cabinets and come in a wide variety of colors and styles.
- An additional thing to consider is using only wood s which do not contain formaldehyde to increase indoor air quality. No worries means peace of mind.
- You Can Use New Materials As Countertops - Recycled materials like glass, rubber, paper, and linoleum work well for a variety of surfaces. In today’s markets, do your homework before you buy. Find out what is available and do the math after you have selected several options to choose from.
- Use Energy Efficient Appliances - A green kitchen is best served with energy saving appliances and will over time save you a lot of money. In today’s markets, there are many appliances which are considered Energy Star rated. If your kids have left the nest, you may want to consider downsizing. Getting the smaller refrigerator or freezer assures that one can and will save energy and money.
- Consider New Innovative Styled and Relocated Windows - Heaters and air conditioners and heat pumps do use a lot of energy. If you have options, strategically placed windows can help reduce costs by letting the sun in or increasing air flow. We suggest here at Action Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning and Electric, Inc. that by using multi-layered curtains, you can retain heat in winter and block the sun's heat in the summer.
- Consider Using A VOC Type Paint - Use low or noVOC (Volatile Organic Compound) paints to maintain indoor air quality. Most manufacturers across the board have a wide variety to choose from.
- Consider Using Green Lighting - You may want to buy CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lamp) or LED bulbs, and change them out all over the house. Both use less energy and last much longer than incandescent bulbs.
- Consider New Products That Provide Sustainability - Use durable materials to save product replacement costs and reduce waste. New uses of materials like concrete and slate are extremely durable and versatile. If you're remodeling, try to reuse as many materials as possible. Most can be stained in a variety of colors to blend with your new home décor.
- Consider Instant Hot Water Where Climate Appropriate - In many cases, instant hot water heaters can be the best choice, because it limits the amount of energy being used to keep water hot. Gas water heaters save more energy than electric, and can be engineered to heat both the building and the water. If your water heater is warm to the touch, it could use insulation. Pre-cut jackets or blankets are relatively cheap, and can save up to 9% in water heating costs.
- Use Natural Products For Maintenance - Clean your kitchen often, with natural cleaners. Vinegar, salt, and baking soda help fight grime and deodorize, and are not nearly as harmful when flushed down the drain as typical household cleaners.
While building green can save money in the short term, living green is what really makes a difference. Most of us really want to do our part, we just may not understand how. One of the most important changes we can make as consumers is in speaking to our old habits. Sometimes old habits need to be changed just to be more efficient. Considering new products out on the market these days could be something new every month. With all the Energy Saving products out there it's a shoe in that you will be able to find another way to save money if you do your research.
By making sure you don't leave your faucet running, recycle as much as possible, and use water and energy efficient settings on your dishwasher, these are easy things we can change every day that will over time save you money. Look for better more effective ways to save yourself more money in your home this weekend. Then give us a call here at Iwantactionnow.com. We are here to help you save more!
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