We all have our own convictions when it comes to conserving energy and "saving the Earth". I grew up in the 1990s, and my elementary school (in Southern California) was all about saving the rainforests, and stopping pollution. This type of indoctrination can stick with you, and it's not such a terrible thing.
Energy efficient options aren't always the most beautiful. Solar panels might not be too obtrusive (given their typical rooftop location), but some of us don't think they're particularly attractive. Not all energy efficient features have to bring down the decorative morale of a home, and some features can beautifully improve a home's decor.
One of the easiest ways to make a home more energy efficient is to change the light bulbs and light fixtures. LED bulbs use less energy and last longer, although they can be a bit more expensive, they are becoming more affordable. LED light bulbs come in different shapes and sizes, which allows for extra creativity.
Keep in mind that most LED lighting is somewhat cold or blue in tone, which I can't stand. Nothing is worse that a home at Christmas covered in blue LED lights, it feels so cold, and sterile. There are warmer LED options available, which will improve the warm and cozy feeling and save energy.
Changing the heating system isn't as affordable as switching out light bulbs, but it's an excellent way to make home more efficient in the long-term. A wood burner is one option for an energy efficient heating system, and they're available in both modern and more traditional designs. There are also other energy efficient options that would be out of sight, like underfloor heating powered by solar energy. Personally, I would take the cute and cozy, stylish wood burner.
The quality and age of windows can make a big difference with energy efficiency. Old windows allow heat and cool air to escape rather easily, keeping the heating and cooling systems in the home running non-stop. There are ways to repair older windows, and oftentimes full replacements are required. Renewal by Andersen replacement windows could be helpful. New windows can also protect the home from moisture, pests, and bad weather entering the home.
New windows are one of the best and most beautiful ways to improve a home's curb appeal, and they will make home brighter, allowing more natural light to filter in.
Old doors can allow air to escape from the home, in all seasons. Replacing both external and internal doors could help to stop drafts, cold patches and problems with moisture. Replacing the doors allows for some creativity, an updated front door can change the entire appearance of a home.
If a new front door isn't in the budget, a new threshold at the bottom of a door or even new weatherstripping/caulk is helpful.
New appliances give the home a new look and improve the home's energy efficiency. Older appliances can use up excess energy, which makes up for the difference in the end, because less energy spent will lower the bills. Sleek, chrome appliances work for a modern home, or stay traditional. but add modern efficiency.
We can't wait to add new appliances to our home, not because they're old, but because they are rather cheap looking (builder-grade). One thing at time, and there is nothing wrong with what we have now.
Many families are making their homes smarter by adding more technology. Some forms of newer home technology can help save energy. A smart thermostat gives the home a high-tech edge and can help save money on heating and cooling, always maintaining a comfortable temperature on the inside. With this kind of technology we can worry less about big beautiful windows allowing too much energy transfer, and enjoy our beautiful naturally lit spaces.
Enjoy transforming home into a more energy efficient space, making it more beautiful all together.
*This is a collaborative post.