Tag Archives: impact on the environment

I Love My Car But I Love the Planet Too

I Love My Car But I Love the Planet Too

Nowadays, being a self-proclaimed petrol head can land you in an awkward conversation about the environment. There is no denying that car fumes have a significant impact. After all, we’re all aware of the risks of outdoor pollution. However, it doesn’t mean that petrolheads should feel guilty about their love of driving and cars in general. You can love your car and the planet at the same time. More importantly, you don’t need to buy an electric vehicle to prove to your friends that you’re a conscientious driver. Here are some of the ways you can stop feeling guilty about your car. 

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First of all, having a car is not quite the same thing as driving it everywhere. You can make a conscious choice to drive less to reduce your impact on the environment. For instance, switching to public transports or using the cycling path for short distances can dramatically reduce your carbon footprint. You can also arrange a car-sharing schedule with co-workers so that you can actively share miles and reduce the number of cars on the road. In other words, owning a car doesn’t mean you can’t use it responsibly. 

Changing your car is not always an option

While driving leads to high CO2 emissions, cars have more than one way of affecting the planet. The process involved in manufacturing vehicles is highly damaging – regardless of whether you own a diesel or an electric car. As a result, it’s fair to say that drivers who keep their vehicles for longer and look after their cars – from regular maintenance work to sct tuner improvements, for instance – are a positive force for the environment. Indeed, if all drivers were to keep their vehicles on the road for a few more years, car manufacturers could significantly reduce their production volumes. 

Are we ready to use electric cars yet?

Even though more and more manufacturers have promised to go electric, it’s fair to say that drivers are not convinced by rechargeable vehicles. Indeed, an electric car will need to be recharged sooner than you’d need to refuel your petrol engine. As a result, it may not be suitable for long-distance commutes. Additionally, despite the increasing number of charging stations throughout the US, EV owners continue to struggle to find a charge point on their route. Many have to research the most suitable itinerary ahead of the journey to identify where public chargers are. Additionally, while it takes only a handful of minutes to refuel a petrol engine, charging an EV can take the whole night, making long journeys almost impossible. Petrolheads have not bought an EV because vehicles are not suitable for everyday use. 

Are electric cars zero-emission cars? 

Finally, it’s important to mention that charging an EV can have a negative impact on the environment. Indeed, depending on how the electricity is produced, the vehicle may not help to tackle climate change. In other words, less fumes may not be a good thing, after all, if the charging method is not green. 

Should petrol heads feel guilty about driving their favorite cars? The answer is no. While you need to be more environmentally-aware in your choices, it’s fair to say that the EV revolution has still a long way to go. As for now, mindful petrol heads can be a positive force of change for a greener road behavior. 

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

Home Energy Efficiency Myths

Home Energy Efficiency Myths

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Over recent years, home energy efficiency has become a major talking point, with more and more people seeking tips that can help keep their bills – and their home’s impact on the environment – as low as possible. As tends to happen when a topic becomes popular, the good advice tends to be joined by a few myths that can potentially stymy people’s ability to actually improve the energy efficiency of their home as a whole. Below, we’ve outlined a few of these myths, so you know which measures aren’t worth your time – and which ones are. 

MYTH: Hand washing dishes is preferable to using a dishwasher

It’s claimed that there are two benefits to hand washing over using a dishwasher. The first is related to the energy needed to heat the water for washing; according to the myth, less hot water is needed to wash dishes by hand, and thus less energy needs to be used to heat that water. The second is in terms of the water itself, with the myth suggesting that dishwashers use more water than people generally use to hand-wash, which means dishwashers increase water waste.  Neither point, however, is accurate – dishwashers are the more efficient choice, by every metric, every time.

MYTH: Black radiators are preferable to white radiators when it comes to heating your home

If you were to leave two shirts, one black and one white, out in the sun for an hour, the black one would be much hotter to the touch than the white – so this myth does have a basis in scientific fact. However, the difference is in the type of heat; in our example, it’s thermal heat that makes the black shirt feel hotter, but radiators primarily produce convective heat – which colors do not impact. While radiators do produce some thermal heat, it’s not significant enough for you to see any real benefits from black radiators. If you paint a white radiator black than you might see tiny benefits due to the extra layer of insulation, but it’s not significant enough to be worth going out of your way for – if you like the idea of black radiators as a design feature, then go for it, but doing so won’t make an appreciable difference to your heating bills.

MYTH: It’s better to leave your home heating on all day rather than turn it off and on continually 

This myth would make sense if everyone lives in a hermetically-sealed property where it was impossible for internally-heated air to escape – but no one does live in such a property. Our homes are losing energy all the time, which means that if the heat is left on all day, then heat is being lost all day too. It is far preferable to turn your heat on and off as and when needed. 

MYTH: Use plastic wrap to cover windows and prevent heat from escaping

Around 25% of a property’s heat is lost through the windows, so this myth seems to pose a sensible solution to this problem – simply use plastic wrap to add an extra layer of insulation but without preventing natural daylight from entering the room. However, the benefits of doing this are negligible, it’s unsightly, and plastic wrap at all is less than ideal from an environmental standpoint. Realistically, modern double-glazed windows that have been properly installed and are well-maintained are always the best way to prevent heat loss via the windows in your home. 

So what does work? 

All of the myths developed for a reason: because people want to make their home more efficient and cut their energy bills, especially over the winter months. The fact that the above myths have been busted doesn’t change the fact that people still want to see the benefits of a more efficient home – so it’s worth discussing the measures that can actually make an appreciable difference in this regard. 

Most of the principles of good energy efficiency will be familiar to most; there’s simply no magic remedy that will slash bills and cut energy usage dramatically. Instead, focus on the fundamentals: 

  • Ensure that your home is adequately insulated
  • Replace old or damaged windows to help retain heat in your home
  • Keep the thermostat as low as is comfortable and safe
  • Swap your conventional light bulbs for LEDs
  • Turn the lights off when a room is not in use
  • Unplug devices rather than leaving them on standby

The above methods can really help to keep your home as energy efficient as possible, so you can set the myths aside and focus on achieving tangible results.

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.