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Posts Tagged: green solutions

Green resolutions your house can keep in 2014

Posted On: Filed Under: Home energy audit 2 Comments on Green resolutions your house can keep in 2014

 

As we have mentioned in previous articles, our homes are an important part of the eco-system in the Pacific Northwest. They produce carbon dioxide, use fuel and create waste. When it comes to easy ways to improve your carbon footprint, there is no place like home.

So our top ways to achieve your Green Resolutions in 2014 are home related:

1. Get a comprehensive home energy audit and consider energy saving upgrades.

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2. Switch heating fuel from expensive oil and propane to cleaner natural gas or renewable electricity.

3. Replace your CFL bulbs with LED bulbs that don’t contain mercury and won’t adversely affect your health with excess UV rays when their coatings crack.

4. Conserve water. The world supply of fresh water is declining. There are many things you can do from using rainwater barrels for plant watering systems to planting hardier, native grass that needs less water in summer, to installing a low flow toilet. Plumbing can be very green.

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The question that our Home Energy Specialists often get is, where do I start?

Over the past two years we have implemented a home energy audit division at Washington Energy Services, and it has transformed how we think about your home. Having a home energy audit is a great place to start, because it is starting with science.

Taking ‘the home as a system’ approach, our BPI certified home auditors conduct a thorough (3 hour) inspection including comfort issues, air quality, equipment performance and safety. Unlike a do it yourself audit, this involves specialized equipment that can pinpoint the source of your discomfort and energy loss. After the audit, you will receive a detailed report, highlighting all findings but establishing priorities for comfort and energy saving. This process and report alone can begin your journey toward greener living.

We hope these 4 ideas for greener living inspire you. To learn more about home energy audits, contact us online or at 800-398-4663.

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5 easy green holiday ideas

Posted On: Filed Under: Windows, Heating No Comments on 5 easy green holiday ideas

 

1. Buy locally made presents.

Not only do you get to support your neighbor’s business but things that are made locally don’t have to be transported from the other side of the world. Less transportation equals less carbon emissions.

2. There are several Christmas tree options that are greener than cutting one down.

Getting a tree with a root ball that you can replant is more common now than in past years, and many garden centers will have them. Just replant it when you are done, and it will clean carbon dioxide from the air for many years to come. And if you can’t fit it into your yard, some stores, such as Swanson’s Nursery in Shoreline, work with organizations who have sites for replanting.

Or for a little more radical approach, combine having a lit tree with lighting your home exterior to save energy. Just decorate a tree that is already outside of your house but visible from your living room or family room window. At night, it will shine right in. Then create fun decorations and recycle them after the holidays.

In addition, choose LED light strings as they use 75% less electricity than conventional ones and emit less heat. That way you can out-shine the neighbors AND save energy.

3. Stock your party with eco-friendly liquors and foods.

You may already shop organic but did you know there are “green” spirits. For those who imbibe, they can create an organic holiday cocktail with certified organic vodka, rum or gin and some organic juices. An online search of “organic vodka Seattle” will point you to several local distilleries (so you can get credit for idea #1 too!).  Even national brands now have organic options, for example, American Harvest, an organic vodka from the makers of Grey Goose.  (And of course, drink responsibly).

4. If you are giving toys or electronics that are battery powered, also give a rechargeable battery and charger kit.

This saves money on batteries and hazardous waste in landfills.  And give the gift of a power strip with new computers, TVs, games or audio systems. It’s easy to save electricity by turning the strip off when not in use.

5. EnergyStar.gov (the Department of Energy) says this is a big time of year for home appliance purchases.

Are you getting a washer/dryer set for someone special? (Yourself!). Choose appliances that are EnergyStar qualified, as they are engineered for energy savings. Some EnergyStar appliances may cost more upfront, but will save enough energy to be worth it over their lifespan.

Washington Energy Services wishes you the happiest and green-est of holidays. We carry the best EnergyStar qualified heating and window products and will be here 24/7 if you need assistance, at 800-398-4663.

 

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