Thinking about remodeling and going green? Great! It means that you are up for new solutions, cleaner energy, and lower bills.
With so many different products on the market today that are energy efficient and affordable, it’s just a matter of time when everyone will turn to greener solutions.
Renovation is great, not only due to aesthetics but for efficiency purposes as well. A simple renovation can save you money and significantly reduce utility costs in the future.
Some methods are obvious and straightforward like checking for leaks, while some are more challenging, and require more planning and conscious effort.
Here is how you can make your remodeling green 100% and make your home energy efficient in a single renovation.
- Choose The Right Windows
- Start Saving Water
- Install an Automatic Humidistat in the Bathroom
- And One Last Thing…
- Making the home energy-efficient—all the hacks for a green remodeling
- Frequently Asked Questions
Choose The Right Windows
Do you have squeaky windows? Or do you feel that the draft becomes stronger and stronger with each passing day? If so, it’s a clear sign that you should deal with your windows.
Investing in brand new windows is never an easy decision, but it’s definitely one of the best ones. When investing in windows you should focus on what you are getting, and how much you are spending.
New windows will make your home look more appealing visually, and more worth on the housing market.
When it comes to windows you should choose wisely. If you want energy-efficient, high-end windows that will bring that wow effect, think about Milgard window option: this brand brings high-end design, high-quality components, and energy-efficient windows that will cut down your utility expenses.
Start Saving Water
Trust us, you are using more water than you think.
If you don’t believe us, do a simple test – while brushing your teeth let the water run, and accumulate it to see how much water goes to waste because the tap is open while you are brushing and flossing.
Spending enormous amounts of water adds to your house expenses. Therefore, consider installing a high-efficiency or solar water heater in your home.
If possible, insulate pipes. Systems that are efficient and insulated are systems where hot water moves faster and gets to the faucet when you need it. Simply said, it saves you money and you will help the planet by not wasting water.
Install an Automatic Humidistat in the Bathroom
Simple steps can sometimes give the best results.
Use an automatic humidistat to detect when moisture rises in a certain room. This is a great tool when your guests forget to turn on the fan or if they just love to take long showers. Plus, reducing the moisture can eliminate the chance for mold.
Bear in mind that not each of these methods will fit with your next renovation, but you should definitely start somewhere.
If you have to choose one thing to focus on, you should choose windows as a long-turn solution and an extra value.
And One Last Thing…
Invest in smart home technology solutions. Green technology and smart homes go hand in hand.
While searching for appliances make sure that you are searching for Energy Star® labels to be sure that you are indeed purchasing certified and energy-saving products.
Planning a really big home efficiency project? In that case, seek the advice of a green home professional, or hire a contractor who has experience using sustainable materials and techniques.
Making the home energy-efficient—all the hacks for a green remodeling
Green remodeling doesn’t refer only to the previously mentioned aspects. You should be meticulous and cover all elements when planning a green remodeling of your home. Details come next.
The passive design
You might not realize it, but even the layout of your home can affect the energy efficiency of your house. When picked right, it can even reduce your household energy bills by 30%. Some of the most sustainable building options are mentioned down below:
An essential element of the passive design is the physical orientation of your house and how the seasons affect it. If you have the budget and energy to run a large-scale renovation, you should reconsider the location of each living space. You might want to reconfigure the living room (it’s where you spend the most time with your family) and make it face south. You will get the most out of the sun and heat throughout the winter, lowering the home heating costs. You should also install blinds that are protecting against the heat in the summertime, though.
To add natural light and reduce lighting fixtures, you should consider having skylights in your home. You don’t want the skylight to become a black hole at night, so consider installing LED lights in the shaft. You may use an opaque filter to cover the opening to obtain soothing lighting.
The color of the house’s exterior
The exterior color of a house can profoundly impact energy efficiency. If you live in a warm climate, it’s a good idea to decide on light colors—they will cool down the house in the summer. It’s why houses in cold countries are painted in dark colors and even black—these colors hold heat.
Many homeowners don’t understand the effect of plants and trees on the energy efficiency of their homes. For example, deciduous trees offer shade during the summer. On the other hand, these trees shed the leaves in the winter and therefore improve light and heat. To enjoy these benefits to the maximum, you should plant the trees on the south and west side of the structures. You may keep the house cool and use the AC a lot less frequently by adding a green roof.
Use the suitable renovation materials
Should your mind be set on green remodeling, you need to buy materials that ensure such home renovation. There are a couple of methods to access new materials and use the materials you already have. Being creative is always a great way to cut down your spending when remodeling.
Navigate the web to find all the information you need on sustainable building materials, from plumbing to roofing and bathroom fixtures. Reliable websites offer detailed lists of what to look for to make sure that the materials are sustainable.
The Environmental Stewardship Program (the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association) gives consumers recommendations on the most sustainable cabinets. The program rates the products on five categories, and environmental stewardship and air quality are such categories. It may surprise many, but sustainability is one decisive factor for builders and consumers when selecting a cabinet company. More and more companies make greener cabinets nowadays.
Don’t rush into things and get a hammer to demolish everything inside your house. Take it easy and slowly, instead. Take an extensive look together with your contractor and decide what you can repurpose or refurbish first.
Resell and buy locally
Just because you’re not a big fan of reusing doesn’t mean that other people can’t use it. You can find nonprofits programs that ease out the exchange process. Look for such programs in your area. They can come and take old appliances and materials, evaluate them, and resell them for you. You will receive a donation tax write-off for everything they take.
One way to decrease your renovation’s carbon footprint is to give new life to what you already have. You could, let’s say, give your cabinets a unique appearance with non-toxic paint. It’s a great way to cut down the spending and have a fresh new vibe in the kitchen. You may also reface the cabinets using the frame and switch out the doors, knobs, hinges, and pulls.
With reuse, you eliminate the costs for manufacturing and transporting emissions from producing something new. It also decreases the waste and keeps your spending to a minimum. It has many benefits on numerous levels.
Instead of shipping barn wood outside the state, you should use local items previously used. You will no longer have to use new things, and the earth can keep its trees.
Air seal your home
You will lose a lot of energy when the air doesn’t stay in or gets inside. We don’t only talk about the windows (probably one of the most vulnerable points in your home when it comes to heating/cooling), but about the entire heating system. When there’s a continuous draft from cracks between the floor and a door, your heating system will have to run all the time. Here are some ways to air seal your home:
You can cut a foam/rubber material to various sizes and use it for any item that moves; doors and windows are such things.
You squeeze the material into small and stationary areas to reduce the risk of airflow through the gaps, joints, and cracks that are smaller than a quarter-inch.
For large-scale home remodeling, this is one of the most effective ways to control airflow in your home. During construction, air drywall seals the openings, seams, and joints in the doors, walls, and windows.
Smart insulation will improve the energy efficiency of your home as it traps energy in. As a result, the weather outside will affect the temperature inside your home a lot less. As with everything else in life, some insulation products are more efficient than others.
80% recycled materials are used to make cellulose insulation and recycled cotton, and they make excellent products for energy-efficient homes. Also, some companies use recycled glass, and such products meet the EPA’s Recovered Materials Guidelines. It’s an incredible way to improve your house’s energy efficiency and reduce the landfills’ clogging. Keep in mind to look for products that are free of toxins and VOCs for the insulation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is green remodeling?
Green remodeling has the same purposes as new construction: resource conservation, energy efficiency, and a healthy indoor environment. Planning and design and the ways to get there with you new construction. You may start with a home energy audit to identify the perfect greening opportunities and seek the methods to improve your home.
How much will green remodeling cost?
Expect to pay $20,000 and up for an extensive green remodeling project. You should see such project like it is: a wise investment that saves you on the electricity bill in the long run. Even if a green remodeling costs you more than a regular one, it’s always a wise investment.
Energy-efficiency homes are essential. Here’s why!
An energy-efficient home saves you money because it decreases your utility bills. Green remodeling means big and small improvements that count both for your energy bill and the environment. Things like compact fluorescent light bulbs, programmable thermostats, or caulking make your house more energy-efficient and impact the environment a lot less.
Do you have many eco-friendly building materials to choose from?
One reason people postpone a green remodel is the misconception that there aren’t many eco-friendly building materials. Even if that was true a decade ago, things have changed a lot and the business has grown. Every type of material you use to remodel has a green alternative. Eco-flooring options, wool/denim insulation, updated roofing, bark siding, etc. are some of the green options to use for a home. You only need to do due diligence and seek the sustainable solutions you don’t know about.
Do you need to use exclusively natural/green or eco-friendly products?
It’s a question tricky to answer because there is no standard definition for any of the terms. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission states the terms should specify precisely what makes the products green or eco-friendly. Reliable companies will answer your questions about the details of making their products eco-friendly/natural/green. Don’t hesitate to ask for answers!