Monthly Archives: July 2013

7 Simple Ways to Save Energy at Home

So many simple things can be done to reduce the energy consumption at home. Home owners fail realizing how wasteful some of their habits could be. Here are several very basic changes that will result in drastic reduction of the energy consumption.

1. Replace Old Devices

Energy Star-certified appliances and devices use less energy than old pieces. Replacing your kitchen appliances is a great idea. You will have to invest in new pieces but the appliances will pay themselves off due to the energy saving.

2. Unplug Devices You are not Using

Appliances, gadgets and personal devices are often left plugged, even when not in use. Believe it or not, this practice leads to the significant waste of energy.
The energy used by appliances that are left plugged without working is often called “phantom load.” According to some statistics, US households pay approximately three billion dollars per year on phantom load. The solution is very simple and very efficient.

3. Clotheslines Save a Lot

Using clotheslines to dry clothes can reduce the energy consumption of a household by as much as five percent.
The simple clothesline can easily replace the dryer. All that you need is a rope that can be purchased from any department store.

4. Improve the Basement

Basements that are not insulated can lose large amounts of heat. The same applies to cracks and apertures in the basement walls. Try to figure out whether there is draft because you will be using large amounts of energy to compensate for the lost heat.

5. Motion Sensors

Instead of having lights on all of the time, install motion detectors. This way the light will be on solely when you are passing by.
Motion detectors are perfect for outdoor systems. Apart from saving energy, you will be boosting the security of your home.

6. Do Mobile Computing

Did you know that a laptop needs less energy to run than a desktop computer? Next time you decide to buy a computer, go for the laptop. There are powerful and highly functional possibilities that deliver performance comparable to the one of a desktop computer.
Laptops use approximately six times less energy than desktop computers. When in sleep mode, they also waste less energy than the desktop PC.

7. Plant Trees in the Garden

Trees will improve the appearance of your backyard and they will also decrease the amount of money you spend on cooling your home during the summer.
Trees create shade and according to some statistics, planting a few trees in your backyard can reduce your electricity bill during the summer by as much as 40 percent. Additionally, trees planted approximately one foot away from the house can “guard” the walls against cold, as well.

Saving energy is all about changing your mentality and daily habits. Learning something as simple as unplugging devices can significantly affect your electricity bill. You will be doing something good and you will be saving money – could anything beat those benefits?

Posted by Donald Schmit July 15, 2013 at 10:02 AM under News and Events
Alternatives for a Greener Home

There is more to a greener house than just composting your trash and the type of energy you use. You also have to have alternatives to commercial products for personal care, cleaning and even freshening the air that you can use that are gentler to the environment. There are also other methods for doing some household tasks that are better for the environment. 


1. Apple Cider Vinegar
Cleaning Windows and Countertops – Mix this with some water and you have a window cleaner that will not leave an unsightly residue. This is also free from the chemicals in glass cleaner. You can also use this vinegar and water on countertops, as it has antibacterial qualities. 
Acne Treatment – This vinegar applied to acne will kill the bacteria that cause acne. It does not have some of the negative side effects of the chemically based acne treatments. Dilute this vinegar with two parts water before using. This same mixture is an excellent natural toner for the skin to return it to its natural pH after cleansing it.
2. Cornstarch
Powder – Cornstarch is great used in place of baby powder or other body powders. There is no talc or other ingredients that could cause problems. Even though talc is a natural product, it is one that could contain asbestos according to the American Cancer Society and therefore, should be avoided. Cornstarch will safely absorb moisture away from the skin without any chemicals.
3. Washing Soda
Laundry Detergent – Washing Soda (sodium carbonate) mixed with Borax and pure castile soap makes an ideal alternative for washing clothes. This mixture has no fragrances, phenols, phosphates, sulfates, or other harmful chemicals. Take 28 ounces of Washing Soda and add 38 ounces of Borax and mix it with 2.5 ounces of pure castile soap (comes in bar and will have to be shaved off the bar). Add about 1/4 cup of this mixture to your tub of laundry.
4. Baking Soda
Deodorant – Baking soda applied under the arms is a natural body deodorant. It prevents odor from forming under the arms. Many commercial deodorants contain aluminum along with other chemicals that we do not need.
Drain Freshener and Cleaner – Baking soda by itself will freshen up a stinky drain. Just pour some down the drain and let it sit before flushing with water. To unclog your drain, pour one cup of baking soda down it followed by one cup of Apple Cider Vinegar that has been heated. Let this sit for about 5 minutes, and then flush with about one quart hot to boiling water. No chemicals needed!
5. Clothesline
Drying Clothes – Drying clothes indoors or outdoors on a clothes line saves use of traditional energy and even saves your solar energy that you generate for other uses. Either way, drying clothes in this manner is a green alternative to machine drying clothes.

6. Oil of Peppermint

Air Freshener and Pest Repellent – Placing oil of peppermint on some cotton balls is a great way to freshen the air and repel pests. Make sure to place the cotton balls in dishes or on some foil to prevent the oil from getting on fabrics. This oil eliminates the need for chemical air fresheners or insecticides.
These are just some of the alternatives to help you live a greener life. What other alternatives can you find to use?

Posted by Amanda Hampton July 06, 2013 at 7:15 AM under Environment