Seven Super Simple Ways to Go Green Right Now

August 29, 2012 by  
Filed under Green Living Tips

Going green doesn’t mean you have to completely cover your roof in solar panels or pepper your property with gigantic wind turbines.  You don’t have to break the bank to go green, and sometimes, you don’t even have to open your wallet!  Here are seven tips that are cheap and easy that will have you going green quickly.

1. Make sure your house is well insulated.  A house can lose a lot of its energy through poor insulation, and this is just throwing money away!  You can hire a pro to come out and diagnose where you are losing the most energy, or you can simply make sure that you are timely when replacing your attic insulation.  Also, make sure that your doors and windows are properly weather stripped so that you aren’t losing energy through any cracks.  A place people forget to insulate is outlets, and you can buy outlet insulators that are cheap and easy to install.  One last thing to consider is getting double-paned windows installed to further insulate your home.

2. Focus on buying renewable materials.  For instance, if you’re considering wood floors in your home, why not consider bamboo?  It’s easily renewable versus traditional hardwoods, and it brings a bright, cheery color to your flooring.  Another renewable material that you are probably aware of are biofuels.  Fill up your tank at a gas station that offers ethanol in their gasoline and you’ll be doing your part to use more renewable materials.

3. Make more green and energy efficient choices in your home.  By using energy-saving light bulbs, installing a programmable thermostat, and using solar chargers to charge your small electronics, you can expect to see a huge savings in your electric bill.

4. Find a utility company that offers green energy.  More and more providers are offering plans that incorporate green energy into the mix.  Ask your provider if they offer a green energy plan and ask what percentage of the electricity you get is green.  Some smaller companies have gone all-green.  Check your area for these gems and you can be sure that going green will be super easy because the utility company is doing most of the work!

5. Get rid of your old appliances and get Energy Star rated ones.  You can wait until they break down, or you can sell your old appliances and put that money towards getting new ones that are Energy Star rated.  Some examples of appliances you can find Energy Star rated are: refrigerators, washers, dryers, dishwashers, HVAC systems, televisions, and more.

6. Speaking of washers, set them to cold.  Setting your washer to wash on the cold setting could save you a nice bit of change.  There are even detergents you can now buy that are formulated for use in cold water.  To add to the savings, try line drying your clothes on nice days rather than tossing them in the dryer.

7. Power down for the night.  Make it a habit to turn off everything electrical in your house before you bed down for the night.  This should always include your computer.  You’ll be surprised at how much money you’ll save following this simple advice.  Also be aware of “phantom loads” –devices that pull energy even when they’re turned off– and consider investing in a “smart” power strip that will shut off these devices from your electricity when not in use.

As you can see, it’s an easy matter to go green, even if you are making simple every day choices.  It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money or take a lot of your time to help the planet.

10 Ways to Start Living Green

August 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Green Living Tips

With rising energy costs and increasing concerns about what affect we are having on our environment, it’s no surprise that more and more people are jumping on the green movement. The costs associated with going green is also falling, so more and more homeowners are finding that incorporating green energy into their home is becoming a smart and cost-effective solution. Here are some ways you can consider going green in your life.

1. Put up a solar panel array. Solar panel costs have dropped to the point where the average homeowner can find it affordable to install panels on their roof to either help decrease their dependence on the grid, or remove themselves from the grid entirely. Even if the up front cost deters you initially, you can consider leasing you array rather than buying it so you can start seeing savings immediately.

2. Generate wind energy. If you have the resources (land and money), you can consider putting up wind turbines on your property. If land is an issue, there are smaller wind turbines available that can be installed on your roof. Either way, you can expect to see great savings on your electric usage.

3. Use water to generate electricity. If you have running water on your property, investigating hydroelectric options might be prudent. All it takes is a small river or stream and you can harness that power to help cut your dependence on the grid.

4. Store the excess energy –and even sell it back. Once you’ve generated enough power to cover your needs, and your generation means are still pumping out energy, what do you do with the excess? There is a large range of options for battery storage, available in a range of prices. Once your batteries are full, you can even see if you can sell your excess energy back to the grid. The availability of programs that allow you to sell back your energy isn’t widespread yet, so check in your area.

5. Remove outdoor lighting from your electricity usage. Outdoor lighting that use small solar panels can be found at most hardware stores these days, and come in a vast array of styles to fit any decor motif. If you’re on a budget, the cheaper ones might not provide as much light as your electricity-based ones, but with the savings you can buy more lights to make up for it.

6. Charge your small electronics with solar. All of your small electronics that need charging –like your cell phone– now have solar charging options. You can find solar chargers easily on the Internet, and can expect to see them become more and more available in major retail chains at time progresses.

7. Use more fans at home and run them on solar power. Most people know that you can help cut your energy usage by using electric fans at home, but did you know that these can be powered by solar means, saving you even more money? There are even solar fans available for your car so you can run your air conditioner less in temperate environments.

8. Switch out all of your bulbs to energy-saving bulbs. This is likely the first step most consumers take to save on their electric bill. The technology has improved, so if you’ve put off replacing a few bulbs in your home because you like to dim your lights, there are now energy-saving bulbs that are damnable. They are also offered in a variety of shades now, so if the harsh white light was putting you off, maybe it’s time to check into the shaded varieties.

9. Consider using a solar cooker. You can get expensive high-tech versions of a solar cooker, or you can go low-tech and inexpensive. They concentrate sunlight to cook food, thus, they are outdoor devices. This makes them great for camping or summer outdoor parties and activities. Cutting back on the use of your oven can net you substantial savings, especially in the summer when your air conditioning has to fight your oven to cool your home.

10. Always make sure you are compliant with local regulations. When you’re going green, you need to check with your local authorities to ensure that you are within regulations.

Using green energy is one of the smartest things a consumer can do these days. Even if you have to start small and work your way up to going greener, you are helping the environment and saving money.

Solar Powered Green Homes

November 26, 2010 by  
Filed under Videos

Depot Walk in Orange County CA is LEED Certified Silver. SunPower Solar panels saves on electricity and lowers your carbon footprint.

Read more

Green Living Guide

March 13, 2010 by  
Filed under Green Living Tips

Green living is easier said than done. There are many facets to green living that need to be considered before you can do a radical change of your approach to life. First, you need to realize that green living is not just leaving your car at home occasionally once in a week and taking public transportation instead. There is a lot more to it than that. When you attempt the goal of green living, you are making a stand and demanding that the foods that you eat are healthy and free of pesticides, the clothes that you wear is not contaminated, and the water that you drink is free of chlorine.

In addition to this, green living requires lowering the amount of energy that your equipment consume, embracing solar power, and changing your way of life so that you do not damage the environment. If you own your own home, this can call for some costly changes. Your old top loading washing machine would need substituted by a machine that wastes much less water and electricity. If you live in a sunny area, you would need to take advantage of your roof space to install solar panels. Obviously, green living can be done cheaply. Nonetheless, for the serious individual, there is quite a lot of planning and changes involved in making a home environmentally friendly.

Green living can affect making changes to the cleaning products you use as well. Cleaning materials are one of the topmost sources of pollutants made from a home. Spray tins add fumes to the air, liquid mixtures add chemicals to the water that is flushed down the toilet or sink. The chemicals wiped onto paper towels end up in landfills, which then contaminate the water and soil near the trash dumps. By changing the cleaning products you use, you can drastically lower the amount of harm that is done to the environment. The more biodegradable items you purchase and use, the nearer to a state of green living you achieve.

Having a green home is not the only thing that you can do to aid the environment. Purchase products that are attested as doing little damage to the environment when they were made. Purchase cleaning supplies that are biodegradable and do not cause long term harm to the waterways and the life that lives in those waters. Do not buy products that harm the environment. If you do your part by owning a green home, you can be a living example that it can be done without sacrificing comfort and ease of living.

There are other many elementary things that you can do that won’t cost you much, or any, money and allow you to start a green living way of life. Recycle everything you can and throw away as little as possible. Purchase foods that do not have excessive packaging. There are many butcheries and fruit markets that use recyclable wrap when selling their goods. Drive your motor vehicle less and learn about how the choices you make in your life affect the environment.

If you are truly concerned in green living you should look at using alternative power sources. Solar panels on the roof of your home, as an example, is an excellent green living solution. Visit

Not Too Many Years Ago Green Living Was Reserved for Extremist Earth-lovers

March 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Green Living Tips

In addition to green shopping bags and fuel efficient cars, there are a number of things you can do at home to improve your energy consumption. Newly constructed buildings tend to be green buildings, with many energy-saving features already in place. Whether you have an older home or a brand new home, there are a number of changes and ideas to save energy, and that in turn will save you money.

You simply cannot underestimate the importance of turning off a light to save energy. When your lights are on, be sure to burn only the new energy efficient light bulbs. These compact fluorescent light bulbs use up to 75% less energy and last up to ten times as long. What this means to you is you are saving money on energy and creating less waste.

Everywhere you go these days, you see “Save The Earth” t-shirts (made of organic materials, of course) and “green” shopping bags. More and more people are turning in the keys to their enormous, gas-guzzling SUVs for a greener ride in a more fuel efficient car. As green living becomes mainstream, more and more people are understanding the need to adopt a greener lifestyle to prevent further damage to our planet.

Your heating and cooling bills are likely one of your largest energy drains. Be sure to keep your thermostat set at a lower temperature in the winter months and a higher temperature in the summer months. Avoid heating and cooling the outdoors by ensuring your doors and windows are air-tight. Consider replacement windows to save energy and keep your heated or cooled air indoors.

Another large energy consumption area is your water heater. You use hot water for washing clothes, bathing, cleaning dishes, and a number of other things. If you don’t already have one, consider upgrading to a gas water heater to save energy.

When you have taken all of these energy-saving measures in your house, you should see a significant drop in your monthly energy usage. But you can still do more! Most days, you have a vibrant energy source shining down on your house, and unless you have solar panels installed, this energy is simply going to waste. If you’ve looked into using solar power at your house previously but have rejected it due to high cost, take a look at the affordable do-it-yourself solar panel kits. These kits are designed for the weekend do-it-yourselfer to easily construct your own solar panels as well as to install them yourself. What’s more, when you take on the construction and labor element of installing solar panels to your house, you drastically cut down on the overall cost. These solar power kits can decrease your energy usage by up to 80%, resulting in a truly green lifestyle that anyone can take advantage of.

When you adopt green living ways to save energy, not only are you protecting the health of the planet, but you will be saving a few dimes in the process.

Daniel McDowell shares a passion for all thing green and environentally friendly. Incorporating solar energy systems

for over twenty years reviews of the top solar programs as well as wind energy are at