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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.

Going Green with These Home Maintenance Methods

Going Green with These Home Maintenance Methods

If you’re eco-conscious, making green home improvements might be one of your top priorities. In addition to making long-term improvements, you also need to consider the day-to-day maintenance of your home and how you can make the process greener. The methods you use to maintain your home, and the tasks you do can make a big difference to your green living aims. You might be surprised by how some things can have an impact on the environment. If you want to take care of your home in a greener way, think about some of the following tasks for a more eco-friendly home.

Maintain Your Green Improvements and Appliances

If you have decided to make any home improvements to make your property greener, your efforts shouldn’t end there. You also need to maintain them to ensure that they work to their full potential and to extend their lifespan. Whether you’ve chosen to install a wood burner or solar panels, you need to take care of your green home improvements. If you’ve got an instruction manual, follow the recommendations for regular cleaning and maintenance. If not, you can find plenty of advice for how to maintain various appliances and other home improvements.

 

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Use Green Carpet Cleaning Methods

Carpets can be one of the toughest things to clean on your own. Even though you vacuum them regularly, they can still end up requiring a thorough clean now and then. But if you hire a cleaning company, they could use all kinds of chemicals to get your carpets clean. However, you can find services that use green methods, so you don’t have to worry so much. Chem-Dry Carpet Cleaning of the Unifour uses non-toxic and family-friendly carpet cleaning methods. You can find similar services in most areas so you can get your carpets cleaned without worrying about the health or environmental impact.

Buy or Make Green Cleaning Products

It’s not just your carpets that need cleaning. But while your carpets don’t need to be cleaned that often, there are other things in your home that need to be cleaned at least once a week. If you’re not a fan of regular cleaning products, you can look for alternatives that offer a greener experience. You can buy green cleaning products, or if you have the time, you can even make your own. There are lots of natural ingredients, from lemon juice to vinegar, that can make very useful cleaning products.

Maintenance to Save Energy and Water

Doing the right maintenance tasks in your home can help you lead a greener lifestyle by saving energy and water. For example, flushing out your water tank helps to maintain it so you can avoid using too much water and energy. You can keep your air conditioning unit clean so that it doesn’t require so much energy to operate properly. You can even do things like installing a timer on your pool pump.

Keeping your home maintained can be a green process. You just need to make the right moves and use the best methods.

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