Eco-friendly living isn’t just about appreciating the natural resources of the planet, but about doing what we can each day to conserve those resources, and use them in a way that is efficient and responsible.
The good news about going green is that there are lots of things you can do at any price point to make a difference. Here are 5 things you can do – from super-cheap to more expensive – to live greener every day.
Set The Temperature Right ($0)
Make sure your fridge and freezer are set correctly so they don’t work harder than they need to. Your fridge should be set to 3C (37F), and your freezer to -19C (-3F). Anything colder is an unnecessary waste of energy. And make sure to keep those fridge and freezer doors closed – keeping them open for even a few extra seconds adds dollars to your energy bill.
Get LED Light Bulbs ($10-$50)
We all know that incandescent light bulbs waste energy and create too much heat. Luckily, there are several options that are better for your energy bill, but all options are not created equal. LED light bulbs are better than CFLs, and here’s why: LED bulbs last five times longer, use less power per unit of light, don’t contain mercury. Pay a few more dollars to get a lot more green for your buck.
Insulate Your Attic ($500-$1500)
A properly insulated attic will act as a tight seal for the air in your house, preventing heated and air-conditioned air from moving through the roof, and keeping your energy bill low. You’ll have to hire a contractor to properly insulate the attic, which can cost up to a couple thousand dollars, but many provinces and municipalities offer tax rebates to help offset the cost of going green.
Stop The Leaks ($5-$300)
Leaky taps and toilets can waste upwards of 90 gallons of water per day. If you notice a leak, call a plumber – an untreated leak may require a new fixture or even some new pipes.
Check to see if your home is leaking air. Gaps around doors and windows mean that cold air leaks out in the summer, and hot air leaks out in the winter. Weather-stripping your doors and windows is inexpensive and easy to do on your own, and can save you 10 percent on your heating and cooling bills.
Invest In Energy-Smart Appliances ($400-$5000)
When you are replacing household appliances, buy ones that have Energy Star labels on them. This label is the proof that your new appliance uses less water and less energy. Many towns or cities offer tax rebates when you purchase Energy Star appliances, so though the sticker price may be a little higher, rebates and long-term energy savings mean an overall lower cost to you, and the environment.