9 Beautiful Eco-Friendly Home Renovation Ideas You Need To Try
Every now and then, every home needs updating. In an ideal situation, you may want to move to a larger home, but the economy makes you reconsider buying. Instead, you decide that it would be wiser to renovate your home, not only to make it up to date with the current trends but also to suit your present needs and lifestyle. One of those trends that can also benefit your health and the way of thinking is the green way, or an eco-friendly home renovation.
Here are some beautiful eco-friendly home renovation ideas ideas.
Salvage Before Discarding
If the renovation gets out of control, and you end up tearing down walls or remapping entire rooms, take a moment and see what you can salvage and reuse later on. Apart from reducing construction waste, you’ll be saving money for something else.
Items like lighting fixtures, flooring tiles, bricks, cabinets and moulding can be used in the new layout, sold at bargain prices or donated. Either one of these options is better than a landfill.
Buy Pre-Owned Materials
Just like you’ve decided to donate or sell fixtures and materials you no longer have use for, maybe someone else is selling what you need. There are many retailers who specialize in high-end pre-owned products.
Aside from being a cost-effective way to furnish your home, you’ll be helping reduce the waste in your area as well. This is a great way to purchase expensive top-tier home appliances for a fraction of their real price.
Nowhere does it say that you must have the newest and the shiniest. Materials like reclaimed wood are not only environmentally safe, but also vastly popular with renovators and architects. It looks great on kitchen countertops, flooring and walls.
Using reclaimed wood saves money, time and energy that would otherwise be used for making a new product from scratch.
Try Antique Shops
An eco-friendly renovation isn’t only about helping the environment but also about saving some money while supporting your community. A one-of-a-kind repurposed item will add charm and warmth to your home which a new, mass-produced item simply never could.
Local antique and consignment shops are places where you can find all sorts of vintage and unique home items like doorknobs, lamps and light fixtures, period showerheads, and even fireplace mantels.
Repaint Before You Replace
Kitchen cabinets are usually the most expensive part of any kitchen remodel. They are often sized and tailored to fit the space so finding a salvaged set may prove to be difficult. However, instead of replacing them, you can repaint or just reface them. If made of solid wood, they’ll probably be in good condition even after years of use. By simply adding new doors and drawers, your cabinets will look like new again.
TIP: Make sure you use a low VOC paint. Low VOC (volatile organic compounds) products are both eco-friendly and healthier than their counterparts. Hardware stores offer low VOC paints that are practically odourless, 100% acrylic and splatter-resistant.
If your renovation calls for shopping for new appliances like refrigerators, dishwashers and ovens, you may want to look for those that are the most energy-efficient.
These products usually have an Energy Star logo and a sticker with all the information you need. These appliances use a lot of electricity, and although keeping the old ones might seem more economical at the moment, you’ll only be postponing the inevitable, along with the extra power they use.
Let In Some Sunshine
Solar energy has become an inevitable aspect of green home remodels. Some people decide to move towards a passive house layout by installing skylights and treated glass walls on the sunny side, while the others go straight for Solar Systems 5kW configuration which can save up to $1,800 worth of power per year.
These systems now come with 25-year solar performance warranty and often include free Wi-Fi performance monitoring software.
Fix The Leaks
Although repairing a runny faucet might be low on your list of priorities, keep in mind that even a leaky faucet that leaks one drip per second wastes up to 10,000 litres a year, while a toilet that keeps running after it’s flushed can waste up to 200,000 litres a year.
You can easily figure out if your toilet is leaking by putting a few drops of food colouring in the tank. Even if the leak is negligible, the colour will show up in the bowl. Most leaks can be fixed easily and inexpensively with just a few basic tools.
As Well As Air Seeps
The equation is simple, the more cool air seeps out of your house, the harder your AC has to work to keep the temperature down. The same applies to heating in the winter, when your furnace needs to burn more fuel, releasing more carbon dioxide and other by-products of burning.
Not many homeowners are aware that air leakage accounts for 20 to 45 percent of the average loss of warm and cools air. Weather-stripping and caulking are simple fixes for leaky windows and doors. Weather-stripping is used for doors and operable parts of windows, while caulking is the best choice for non-opening windows, door trims and electrical outlets.
Eco-friendly projects are not so much about adding things, but making do with what we already have and reducing what we don’t need. By thinking more economically, simplifying our actions and cutting out the middleman, we can do a lot to keep our environment healthy and be better friends to our wallets.