Monday, September 24, 2018

Simple Ways to Save on Cooling Costs This Summer

During the summer, many homeowners may experience an increase in their energy expenses. There's generally one major factor in this increase: cooling costs. With the summer heat, people tend to crank up the air conditioning so they can be cool and comfortable inside. And while this may be nice at the moment, it can be financially damaging in the long run. Fortunately, there are a few simple ways you can keep cool this summer without breaking the bank.

Utilize ceiling fans: One of the main reasons houses feel warm and stuffy is because there's no way for the air to circulate throughout the house. So to help with this issue, you should consider using ceiling or other circulating fans to help with airflow. Whether the air is on or not, using ceiling fans can be a great way to make your home feel cooler. Just remember to turn them off when no one is in the room, otherwise, you'll waste electricity.

Clean the AC unit: Over time, AC units become clogged with debris. When this happens, the unit has to work harder to get the cool air throughout the house which, in turn, increases energy use. Cleaning and replacing filters when necessary can significantly decrease the amount of energy your AC unit uses. And if your unit is pretty old, you may want to consider upgrading to an energy-efficient model. Furthermore, you could install a programmable thermostat, which can help save up to 10% on cooling energy expenses.

Open the windows: If you're looking for really simple energy saving tips, start with your windows. If you live in an area where it's generally cooler at night, turn off the AC and open the windows before you go to bed. This can help get fresh, cool air into your home. Additionally, if the sun shines into your home during the day, try keeping your shades or blinds shut to prevent the sunlight from increasing the temperature in your home. And if your windows aren't in great shape and let air escape from the house, energy saving windows can help significantly reduce energy expenses.

Just because the heat rises in the summer doesn't mean your energy bill has to do the same. With these simple tips, you'll be able to keep cool and keep energy expenses low all summer long.

Friday, September 14, 2018

How to Throw an Eco-Friendly Party

Party planning is a task that involves a surprising amount of work -- from sending invitations to choosing amazing decorations, you're sure to put a lot of time and thought into planning parties this summer. But one factor that many party-throwers fail to think about is the environment. Parties can amount to a lot of waste that can be harmful to the environment. So to help you keep your parties eco-friendly this summer, here are a few tips.

Go paperless: Unfortunately, many party aspects involve paper: from the invitations to paper cups and plates, there can be a lot of paper waste after a party is done. But it's quite easy to go the paperless route with your party. Instead of paper invitations, consider e-invites -- these won't waste paper and can actually be more convenient. And when it comes to cups, plates, and silverware, don't choose paper or plastic. Instead, use real cups and plates that can be washed and reused. This way, you won't have a ton of garbage after the party is done and you can feel good about saving some trees. If you do have to use some paper elements, make sure they get recycled properly.

Reduce and reuse decorations: When it comes to decorations, many party planners rely on streamers, balloons, and more decor that can't be reused or has to be thrown out after it's been used. This can amount to having a lot of waste when the party is done. So instead, consider reducing the number of decorations and reusing items you already have. For example, empty wine bottles and other vases can be filled with wildflowers and serve as beautifully simple centerpieces. Or if you don't have party-approved decorations laying around, check out local thrift shops for some second-hand goods that can be used again in the future.

Choose eco-friendly lighting: One of the easiest ways to see a reward for using less energy is choosing energy-efficient lighting. Lighting can use a lot of energy in a home but fortunately, choosing the right lighting is one of the easiest ways to save energy in your home. By doing something as simple as switching to energy-efficient LEDs and halogen incandescent bulbs, homeowners can reduce energy use by about a third up to as much as 80%. So if you're choosing lighting for your summer parties and want some fancy string lights, make sure you're choosing the right type of bulbs. Additionally, you can go for lighting options that don't use any energy, like candles or solar lights. Either way, you'll have the opportunity to have some great party lighting and see a reward for using less energy.

Parties don't have to produce a ton of harmful waste. By following these simple tips, you can feel good that you're helping the environment and seeing a reward for using less energy, all while having an awesome party.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

The Undeniable Benefits of Solar Energy

Over the past years, solar energy technology has evolved immensely. More people are using solar energy than ever -- which is a good thing because each year, 75 million barrels of oil are saved by those utilizing solar energy. But despite all the good solar energy and green energy services offer, people still aren't quite sure if solar energy is worth the investment. Well, we're here to tell you that it definitely is, and here are just a few reasons why.

It's good for the environment: This is one of the most obvious benefits of solar energy. As one of the most popular sustainable energy options, solar energy has little to no effect on the environment. This is compared to other non-renewable energy sources, like oil and coal, which emit harmful gases and contribute to global warming. When people decide to use energy from a renewable source, like the sun, they're significantly reducing their carbon footprint and overall impact on the environment. So when you choose to consider green energy services and invest in solar energy, you're doing your part to protect the environment from further harm.

It's affordable: Many people make the mistake of thinking that solar energy is extremely expensive and only the wealthiest of people can afford it. But that's not the case at all. In fact, solar panel systems are more affordable than ever because so many people have started using them. While the upfront cost of installing solar panels may be a little expensive, the money saved on energy costs down the line will outweigh that initial cost. Within a few short years, the system will pay for itself and then continue to help homeowners save money on energy bills for as long as the system is installed.

It's a secure energy source: Unfortunately, the resources we currently depend on to provide us energy will run out eventually. And then what? When we invest our time and energy into using things like coal and oil, we're just buying ourselves time. But that big, fiery ball in the sky? That's not going anywhere. That's one of the many great things about investing in solar energy -- you know you'll never run out of an energy source. Solar panels use next to nothing compared to the amount of energy the sun produces, meaning we'll never run out of energy when we utilize solar energy.

As you can see, there are a number of reasons to invest in solar energy -- and other green energy services as well. With the right services and equipment, you can enjoy clean, inexpensive energy from the sun for years to come.