How to be an Eco Warrior without Leaving Your Home

July 11, 2012

Helping to save the planet doesn’t have to mean marching in a protest, never flying on a plane or solely wearing itchy hemp clothing. Doing your bit to be greener doesn’t even mean making huge changes to your lifestyle. The smallest things can make a big difference, from lowering your heater by 1 degree to sealing a tiny crack around your window. There are many tips to help lower your energy consumption within your home, each one of which may seem minor but aids in reducing global energy consumption, which ultimately makes our planet a greener, healthier, happier place in which to live.

Adjust your thermostats

Look at all your thermostats, not just those on your heaters and air conditioners. Most hot water heaters are set higher than they need to be so turn yours down a few degrees centigrade – you’ll be making a difference without even noticing it! You may also find that your refrigerator is colder than it really needs to be so play around with the settings to find what works best. Many have energy saving settings so use those if possible. When it comes to heating and cooling your house, every 1-degree adjustment can save both energy and money so think before you jack the air conditioner or heater up. If you don’t have a thermostat, contact your energy provider to install one.

Seal leaks

Even the tiniest cracks around windows and doors can be a huge drain on both the wallet and the environment in all seasons. Sealing any gaps will keep your house warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer, without your heaters and air conditioners having to work overtime.

Turn off electrical appliances when not in use

The simplest things such as switching off the light when you leave a room, turning the television off when you’re not watching it, or shutting down your computer when you’re going to be away from it for a while, really does make a huge difference to your energy consumption.

Switch on a fan in summer

Rather than relying on an air conditioner to cool your home over the hot summer months, consider using your air conditioner to lower the temperature and then switching it off and using a ceiling fan to continue to circulate that cool air around the room. A couple of fans strategically placed around your home will create a ‘wind chill’ which will keep you cool as a cucumber without the high energy consumption. Contact your energy provider to discuss installation.

Make the most of every appliance

Ensuring that you utilise each appliance so that either they require less energy or you need to use them less often is an easy way to reduce your energy consumption. For example, making sure your dishwasher and washing machine are full before you put them to work will mean you can cut down the number of times you need to use them. Be sure not to overfill your kettle – only fill it with as much water as you’ll need or you’ll be using more energy than is necessary. The amount of energy wasted boiling an overfilled kettle over just a week could power a television for an entire day!

This article has been written in association with AGL Energy Provider.

Photo credits: iStock