Whether you are looking for tips to help you save money, energy, planet Earth, or just interested in learning small changes; you can make in your daily life, look no further!
With the help of "Every Day is Earth Day," we have put
together a variety of Eco-Friendly tips just for you!
* Don't block ventilation. Trim trees and shrubs in front of windows around your house and make sure furniture and draperies are not blocking the windows inside the house. When your windows are open, this will allow the breeze to flow through your house better.
* Buy a Smart Strip! Use it to automatically shut off "phantom energy" devices, like computers, phone chargers, etc. You can buy these at a hardware store for around $40 and most pay for themselves after 6 weeks. Depending on usage, they can actually save $20 a month on your electric bill, according to SmartHome USA.
* Eliminate your use of Styrofoam. Reduce your waste footprint- styrofoam can't be recycled. Use washable metal and glass food containers instead. It's also a good idea to bring one of these containers with you out to eat for leftovers instead of a take home box.
* Locate Air Leaks. Avoiding anything flammable, move a lit incense stick along the walls. If you notice the smoke wavers you may have heat/cold air leaking in or going out. These areas probably need to be insulated.
* Preview before Print. Save paper and ink. Always select print preview before printing anything. Make black and white the default print selection and only print in color when really necessary.
* Try a "Power Shower." This is a short five-minute shower that uses under 13 gallons of water. That's nearly half the average shower of around 25 gallons of water, according to the U.S. EPA.
*Recycle Electronics. Most electronics (computers, cell phones, TVs, fax machines) are not recycled. According to the EPA, these items make up 70% of toxic metals seeping in and out of landfills! Contact Household Hazardous Waste for information, donate to charities (ReStore does not accept electronics) or search nationally at www.eps.gov\epawaste.
* Insulate Pipes. Check if your pipes are warm to touch. If they are, you may need better insulation. Get pre-slit pipe foam at your local hardware store, cut it to size and fasten it with duct tape. Hot water costs should decrease as well as your chance of freezing pipes.
* Block out the sun! Keep out the sun's heat on warm summer days by closing draperies, shades, and blinds; especially on the south and west sides of the house. Closed drapes double as insulators helping to keep conditioned air inside the house.
* Nix The Answering Machine. It may not be intuitive, but voice mail uses less energy, and results in less hazardous waste than answering machines. If all answering machines currently used in U.S. homes were replaced by voice mail, the annual energy savings would be nearly two billion kilowatt-hours, equivalent to taking 250,000 cars off the road, reports The Green Book.
* Bath Indoor Air With Fresh Air And Breezes. Open windows low on the cool side of the house and high on the hot side of the house. For example, in the morning open windows low on the west side and high on the east side. In the afternoon, reverse the process. This helps pull fresh air through the house.
* Walk. Walking ten one-mile trips each week, instead of driving, keeps 500 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere per year. If 10,000 people walk five miles a week instead of driving, in a year we'll eliminate the CO2 created by 240 cars, according to The Daily Green.
Want to learn more about how transportation in your community is impacting the environment...Click HERE to go to Abogo. Abogo is a website with many resources to help you reduce your footprint.
* No Idling. Idling wastes gas. If your car is stopped more than 30 seconds, turn off the engine. Idling for more than ten seconds uses more gas and creates more global warming pollution than simply restarting your engine.
* Green Your Jack-O-Lantern. Buy a pumpkin from a sustainable patch. Bake the seeds and compost what's left after Halloween, making certain to smash the pumpkin up a bit first. Put it in an outdoor bin, layered with shredded leaves or grass clippings. It may take a while to break down, but next spring you'll have nice organic nutrients to layer on the garden.
* Lower the air temp. Set your thermostat to 68 degrees F or lower this winter. Every degree you lower you thermostat saves between 1 and 3% of your heating bill. Even an adjustment of a few degrees can save more than $100 a year on heating/cooling costs and reduce your carbon footprint.
* Get An Energy Detective Monitor. If you can measure it, you can manage it. This small display indicates household electrical usage in real time and projects monthly bills - all without batteries. Make small adjustments and see how savings add up.
* Use Ceiling Fans For Warmth In Winter. Switching direction of ceiling fan blades to clockwise creates an updraft sending warmer air pooled near the ceiling back into the living space, thus making it seem warmer and cutting heating costs by 10% or more.
* Seal It Up. Total energy escaping from the average American house leaks each year adds up to the same as leaving a window open all year around. Use weatherstripping and caulk to seal air leaks and block drafts around doors, windows, chimneys, and electrical outlets.
* Decorate Sustainably For The Holidays. Make sure your holiday tree comes from a sustainable forest. Pick up strands of LED holiday lights at the hardware store - they're 90% more energy efficient than traditional holiday lights. Make garlands of walnuts strung on colorful ribbon, or popcorn and cranberries, or paper chains.
* Put On A Sweater. When temps cool outside, don't turn on the heat. Put on a sweater! Roughly speaking, a light long-sleeved sweater is worth about two degrees in added warmth, while a heavy sweater adds about four degrees. So cozy up and start saving!
* Use Cold Water, Not Hot. For most laundry, cold water works just as well as hot. About 90% of energy used to wash clothes is used for heating water. Cold is just as effective for washing hands, too. The friction and soap are what really gets hands clean.
* What's Your Ecological Footprint? Find out how much of the earth's natural resources your own personal lifestyle requires by taking the quiz at www.myfootprint.org. Compare your footprint to what the planet can sustain, enter your goals, and find out how many acres of land you could save.
* Stop Buying Bottled Water. The energy required to make one plastic bottle is the equivalent of filling it 1/4 full of oil. Plus, some plastics leach toxins. Get a reusable canteen instead, or a stainless steel water bottle without a plastic liner.
* Switch To Cloth Napkins. At two cent per paper napkin, a family of four can save $1.68 a week by switching to cloth napkins, according to The Daily Green. The paper industry contributes to forest clear-cutting, paper mills release dioxins and mercury into waterways, and 40% of landfill trash is paper.
* Unplug.The surest way to kill phantom load (aka standby or low power mode) is simply to pull the plug. When you're done with your coffee pot, microwave, hair dryer, toaster, cell phone charger, and other devices, disconnect them totally from their power source.
* Buy Local. Make a concerted effort to support independent, locally owned businesses whenever and wherever you can. Buying local encourages innovation while diversity feeds the local community.
* Fact: For every one mile it travels, the average U.S. car emits about one pound of carbon dioxide, the greenhouse gas responsible for global warming. Given typical driving distances and fuel-economy, this translates into about five tons of carbon dioxide per car per year, according to the Wall Street Journal. ___________________________________
* Ease Up On The Brake. Driving with one foot on the brake not only wears out brakes but can increase fuel consumption by as much as 35%. A lighter foot can save close to $1 per gallon in gasoline. ___________________________________
* Live Sustainaly. Strive to live in such a way that your daily actions, including the products you use and buy, meet current needs without sacrificing the ability of future generations to meet theirs.
* Regularly Dust And Vacuum Registers And Radiators. Make sure they aren't blocked by furniture, rugs, drapes, or other objects. Do this at least every three months.
*Drive 55 MPH On The Highway. You're less likely to get into an accident, plus you save fuel. At 65 mph you're burning 10% more fuel than at 55, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. At 70 you lose 17% of fuel economy, and at 75 it's 25%. The numbers get worse from there.
* Grow Only Native Plants. Indigenous plants are more tolerant of local soil and weather conditions. They require less engery to get to your garden and you'll support local farmers, helping keep local land used as farms.
Get New Tips Every Week!
** Test Your Insulation. Look at your neighbor's roofs after it snows. If the snow melts faster on your roof than your neighbors, you are probably losing too much heat. It may be time to install new insulation.
* Change Furnace Filters Regularly. Swap out filters every month during the winter seasons. Dirty filters use more energy and make your heating system work harder than it may need to. Pick a date on your calendar each month to help you remember.
* Turn out the Lights. Lighting is responsible for over 10% of a home's energy bill. Yes, compact fluorescent bulbs use 75% less electricity than incandescent, but sometimes the easiest way to save energy is to simply turn off the lights whenever you leave a room.
* Purchase a Programmable Thermostat. According to the U.S. EPA, making the initial investment for the item could save roughly $180 a year in energy costs. Be sure to program the thermostat to turn down when you are sleeping or not home- and make sure it's Energy Star rated.
* Turn off Exhaust Fans. Use kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans only when necessary. Don't forget: the moisture from bathing and cooking helps humidify the house, making it less dry during winter.
* Adjust your water heater. Lowering the temperature 20 degrees from 140 to 120 can reduce your water heating costs by up to 10%. For more savings, try turning it down to 115 degrees or lower.
* Keep cleaning supplies in a locked cabinet. It may seem obvious, but every year over 1 million children are accidentally poisoned in their homes. Many are permanently injured from contact with these chemicals. The most common substance of poison? Household cleaner.
* Precycle: preventing waste before it happens. Buy things you use often in bulk and buy laundry detergent and cleaning products concentrated
so you can use them longer before throwing them away.
* Turn off your dishwasher's dry cycle. It may take a little longer to dry, but can reduce your energy use by 15-50% and could save you almost $25 a year in electricity bills. If there is no off switch, just open the door when the drying cycle starts.
* Choose rechargeable batteries. Save money and resources. Whenever possible, choose lithium-ion or NiMH (nickel metal hydride) over NiCd batteries (nickel-cadmium) - they contain less toxic metals.
* Spring Cleaning? Clean out under your sink first! That's where you are likely to keep dangerous chemicals with the words "Warning," "Danger," "Caution," and "Poison" on them. Box these up and take them to the Household Hazardous Waste Center.
* Skip Dryer sheets! You don't ever re-use them and they are bad for the environment. Soften fabrics and eliminate static cling by adding baking soda to the rinse cycle.
* Lighten your load.Take anything out of your car you don't need. don't forget to check the trunk. For every 100 extra pounds carried around, vehicle loses 1%-2% in fuel efficiency. Every 100 pounds of weight removed can save 4 cents per gallon in gasoline.
* Store Foods In Reusable Containers.
Ditch those plastic baggies and aluminum foil and opt for glass containers that come in endless shapes and sizes you can use over and over again. For example, Pyrex glass containers can go from refrigerator to oven without breaking, and work well in the microwave, too.
* Eat Less Red Meat. Since it takes more fossil fuels to produce red meat than fish, eggs, and poultry, switching to these foods readily slims your carbon footprint. ___________________________
* Check Your Refrigerator Seal. Close a dollar bill in the door frame and tug it gently to see if it's held firmly in place. Move the dollar down a foot and repeat the process until you've tested the entire seal. If the bill slides out, contact a service provider about installing a new seal.
* Organize Errands Effeciently. Cars get their worst gas mileage driving around town. Plan ahead for how you do errands. Piggybacking errands into one saves time, gas, and reduces carbon emissions. Plan your route before pulling out of the driveway.
* Install A Low-Flow Showerhead. A standard five-minute shower uses 30 gallons of water. Installing a low-flow shower head can cut that amount by two-thirds, saving water and money. Depending on quality, a low-flow showerhead will cost anywhere from $10 to $200.
*Make A Draft Snake. Drafts can waste 5% to 30% of energy use. Place a rolled bath towel or custom-made "snake" across the bottom of leaky doors and windows. Use scraps of fabric - even neckties - and fill with sand or kitty litter for heft.
* Check Your Car's Gas Cap. It's estimated that nearly 17% of cars on the road have broken or missing gas caps. This not only reduces gas mileage, it may harm the environment. Putting this tip into practice can save you two cents per gallon, according to The Daily Green.
* Be Produce Smart. Americans send about 14% of the food they buy to garbage dumps (where it doesn't biodegrade), largely because they don't eat it in time and it spoils. Be smart about produce choices so nothing spoils before you get a chance to eat it. Some fruits let off ethylene gas, which speeds ripening in veggies, so be sure to store fruits and vegetables separately.
* Get A Front-Loading Washing Machine. Energy Star front-loaders use half the water and half the detergent of standard top-loading models, and are more energy efficient, as well.
* Don't Bag Grass Clippings. Leave them on the ground so they become mulch, which provides valuable nutrients to the lawn and discourages weed seeds from germinating. Mulch also helps retain water in the soil, preventing runoff into the storm sewer. Not bagging grass clippings also means less in landfills, and you won't need commercial fertilizers.
*Keep Your Frige & Freezer Full. Both are more efficient when packed full, but not so full that cold air can't circulate. In a power outage, they'll even hold the temp for twice as long as half-full one.