The trees may be vibrant shades of orange and red, but there’s never been a better time to start going green. Implementing eco-friendly habits in your daily life is a simpler undertaking than it may seem, and the earth will thank you for taking steps to treat it well all Autumn long.
One of the main culprits of wasted energy is the heating and cooling of your home when you and your family are away. An empty home doesn’t benefit from blasting the AC or heat, so turning the thermostat down or off when heading out the door is a simple way to save energy as well as lower your power bill.
Timed thermostat meters are a wise investment for any homeowner that is keen on going green this autumn as well. Timed meters allow you to set specific times for your heat or AC to dial back to conserve energy, such as when you and your family leave and come back from work and school. Being able to rely on a timer means you’ll never have to worry about whether or not you manually made adjustments before you stepped out the door.
Leaf Them Alone
As a homeowner, your first instinct when seeing fallen leaves collecting in the yard on your sofa and loveseat covers is to break out the rake and tarps for some collecting. However, the environment may in fact benefit more from simply letting them be.
Allowing fallen leaves to decompose in your yard keeps your soil healthy. This is a result of the microbes and nutrients they provide as they break down. If you’re not keen on raking and want to do your part in saving the earth, there’s a solution that will let you have your cake and eat it too.
With the help of your lawnmower (sans grass catcher), you can mulch those pesky leaves and get some highly beneficial soil nutrients in return. After placing custom covers like sectional covers on your furniture to protect from debris, run your lawnmower over the fallen leaves until they are about two centimeters in diameter – the size most ideal for mulch to break down into soil.
Pollution Proof Plants
An often overlooked aspect of environmental concerns is that of indoor air pollution. While not as controversial as its outdoor counterpart, air pollution found within buildings is an environmental concern worth combatting.
As unlikely as it may sound, your home is prone to indoor air pollution of all types. Volatile organic compounds can be released into the air when stripping paint or using certain cleaning supplies. Exposure to these harmful pollutants becomes even more of a concern when you and your family are spending more time indoors as temperatures drop and your sectional covers work outdoors to protect from the cold.
The solution to these invisible menaces? Air filtering plants. Integrating indoor plants with filtering capabilities in spots like your sunroom helps to keep the air in your home clean and pollutant free. Some of the most renown include:
- Chinese Evergreen
- Peace Lilies
- Dragon Trees
- Rubber Plants
- Aloe Vera
Importance of Insulation
One of the wisest eco-friendly investments you can make is properly insulating your home for the fall and winter months. Many houses are still insulated with fiberglass, which is non-biodegradable, has harmful effects on humans, and emits a significant amount of dangerous pollutants when being produced.
Swapping out fiberglass for safer, more environmentally beneficial insulation options isn’t as intimidating as it may seem. There are plenty of professional insulation companies that can install the new insulation so you don’t have to break out the tarps and try to tackle the project yourself.
Here are the insulation materials most recommended by environmental experts:
- Sheep’s wool
Installing new insulation also keeps you from having to crank up the thermostat, helping you to save both energy and money.
After sitting dormant throughout the spring and summer months, your vents and furnace are both due for inspection. It’s extremely common for dust and debris to build up over time and lead to blockages that force your furnace or air conditioner to consume more power and become an eco-friendly nightmare.
As fall rolls in, give a professional a call. The last thing you want to have to deal with is a furnace that is unable to properly heat your home when cold temperatures arrive – or the subsequent electric bills.
You can apply this same principle to other areas of your home as well. Do a clean sweep of your gutters, where a buildup of leaves or other debris can lead to water leaking into your home and putting your new insulation at risk. Just remember to protect your outdoor living area with sofa and loveseat covers as well as the table/chair set covers before extracting any gutter gunk.