You’ve got the bio-fuel car, you recycle your cans, bottles and paper and you even grow your own vegetables. But is your home as energy efficient as it could be?
Inefficient products such as fridge freezers and dishwashers could be causing you to sport a giant-sized carbon footprint. So how can you improve your home’s energy efficiency and ensure that home items you buy in future are good for you and good for the environment?
There are several giveaways that you’re losing heat. Mould and mildew or high humidity can be an indication of water leaks in your toilet or pipework, meaning you use more water, or in your roof, windows or walls, which means that you could be losing heat. Fix leaks and you could save on water usage or heating bills. Leaking air conditioners can also be a real energy-efficiency problem so do keep checking pipes for drips.
Old appliances can be extremely inefficient meaning that as well as damaging your green rating your energy bills could be sky high. Items such as fridge freezers made before the mid 90s won’t have been efficiency rated and should be replaced with a new appliance boasting a good energy efficiency rating. Replacing your clothes washer with an energy efficient equivalent will not only save enough water to fill three home swimming pools and save enough money to buy a dryer too!
Many homes are so poorly insulated that they lose heat endlessly throughout winter meaning ever rising fuel bills to keep the family warm. Replacing worn insulation is a must and thanks to improvements in technology is a job easily and fairly cheaply done without professional assistance or safety equipment. Double glazing also cuts down on heat leaks and should be fitted by a Fensa qualified window fitter. Remember to get in contact with your local council to check whether you qualify for government grants for insulation.
It’s a well-known fact that TVs and PCs left on standby waste electricity. Additionally, turn all appliances off at the wall to keep waste to an absolute minimum. If every appliance in every home was rated energy efficient it would save endless amounts of greenhouse gas emissions. This is just one reason to ensure that future purchases bear the energy efficiency sticker, which guarantees maximum efficiency rating.
While checking your own home is easy to do and can prove invaluable in saving money on your fuel bills as well as ensuring that your carbon footprint is minimised the government website actonCO2.direct.gov.uk provides a free to use carbon calculator which, with the aid of just a few details from your home can calculate your home’s carbon footprint and offer great targeted advice on reducing your emissions and saving money too.
When carrying out DIY don’t forget to consider the green credentials of materials you use and dispose of unwanted building materials appropriately – wherever possible reuse or recycle and use sustainable woods and other building goods so that your home, old or new can be as green as the rest of your life.