Energy efficiency is an integral part of living a green lifestyle. We all have appliances that break down or stop working efficiently. The key question is the following: What should I do when that happens consistent with living green?
Here some suggestions in line with the idea of energy conservation, recycling, and following a green lifestyle.
There are home appliances and products for the office that have earned the ENERGY STAR rating, which means that they are within the efficiency guidelines of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) as being cost effective and/or producing less waste. These agencies have deemed these products to be energy efficient. By choosing appliances, heating and cooling systems, electronics and office equipment, that have the ENERGY STAR designation, you can be sure that you are purchasing a product that is among the most energy efficient available.
Today, virtually all newer homes start off with energy efficient appliances and systems that are a saving energy and money. Older homes often do not have brand new equipment, and the appliances may not be energy efficient. As a result, they will also be more expensive to operate. It’s always good to keep in mind that when you are replacing an item, always buy a newer version which has earned of ENERGY STAR rating. You will know that you will be doing your best in the effort to use less energy and produce less waste. You will also save money over the useful lifetime of the appliance.
All retailers from the largest appliance chains to the specialty sellers have products that are ENERGY STAR approved. Newer models must almost always meet this requirement. Whether you are shopping at Lowe’s Home Improvements, Sears, Best Buy, Costco or the Home Depot, you will find a wide selection of ENERGY STAR rated options from the least expensive up to the top of the line.
Because of the need to save energy, using ENERGY STAR approved appliances not only makes sense but will, in the long run, save money for the consumer on utility bills. Some Energy Star products qualify for a tax credit due to recent incentives. However, ENERGY STAR distinguishes energy efficient products that, although they may cost more to purchase than standard models, will pay you back in lower energy bills within a reasonable amount of time, without a tax credit. When you can both help the environment and save money, you have a double win for your green lifestyle.
It is important when you are making any home improvements or replacing any broken or out-dated appliances recycle the old ones. Most retailers will haul away your old appliance for free or at a minimal cost when you buy a new Energy Star approved model.
Also, if you are looking to upgrade your windows in your home there are ENERGY STAR rated windows that, when installed properly, will be a great asset to your home in the struggle to control the high cost of heating. Look for double pane windows and be sure that all of the surrounding area of the window is well sealed, not allowing the cold air in the winter or hot outside air in the summer.
Installing ENERGY STAR approved appliances and products in your home is part of moving toward a greener lifestyle.