When it comes to living more sustainably, there are plenty of changes you can make in your day-to-day that can reduce your carbon footprint and limit your impact on the environment. While some of the ideas below are simple tweaks in your routine like reusing containers, others like installing solar panels take planning when implementing them into your everyday life.
As one of the most cost-effective forms of renewable energy, adding residential solar panels to your home can help reduce your energy bills, earn you tax credits, and reduce your reliance on fossil fuels. When deciding to install solar panels, many people have questions about solar panel cost and solar panel maintenance.
According to the Center for Sustainable Energy, the average residential solar panels cost is between $15,000-$25,000 for the system without tax credits and state incentives. This solar panel cost can be greatly reduced when examining the long-term benefits of your investment – which can include tax breaks, raising your property value, and avoiding the current high and rising prices of other forms of energy.
You should also account for solar panel cleaning and solar panel maintenance costs when making this sustainable choice. When looking for how to clean solar panels, many people choose to hire solar panel cleaning services or do it themselves. Unfortunately, manual solar panel cleaning can result in dirt and dust returning after a few days which can decrease the energy production of your solar panels.
However, with a fully automated RST CleanTech Solutions system, you can increase the energy production of both residential solar panels and commercial solar panels by up to 30%. The RST CleanTech’s one-of-kind setup cleans with filtered water at night to let your solar panels cool and avoid any cracking, which protects your warranty. RST CleanTech Solutions never uses abrasive materials.
While solar panel installation can seem like a big but worthwhile investment, choosing energy-efficient appliances can also help with reducing your energy use and lowering your energy bills. With smarter designs and energy-saving settings, modern appliances have gotten an upgrade and can lower their water and energy usage when compared to their older counterparts.
When shopping for energy-efficient appliances, look for each model’s ENERGY STAR rating and compare to make sure you’re getting the best option for your sustainable lifestyle. Appliances that are built to meet these higher standards can lower your energy bill and reduce the greenhouse gases your home contributes to the environment.
If you’re looking for an energy-free alternative to your dryer, try hanging your clothes to dry and avoiding the environmental impact of using an appliance. Better yet, consider harnessing the power of the sun just like solar panels do and set up a clothesline outdoors in the sun to maximize how quickly your clothes dry.
For more sustainable choices indoors, look at replacing all of the light bulbs in your home with LED or CFL options. Designed to replace incandescent bulbs, these options are built to use far less electricity and have longer lifespans. As a simple yet significant part of your everyday energy usage, choosing to update all your bulbs to more energy-efficient options is a sustainable decision that can save you money in the long run.
Whether you’re stocking up on food or household supplies, consider buying in bulk to reduce packaging waste. Like many of the ideas on this list, buying in bulk is a choice that can help save you money while being sustainable. By stocking up on the items you use regularly, you’ll benefit from bulk pricing while limiting how much extra waste returns to the landfill.
When it comes to food, setting up a composting bin can help reduce your waste. With a setup as simple as throwing your scraps in a pile or bin, you’ll get free fertilizer for your plants from materials that would otherwise go in the trash. If plants aren’t your specialty, reach out to a community garden or your friends to help them benefit from your sustainable decision.
As you start your journey towards sustainability, use this list along with other environmentally focused resources to help guide you. From installing solar panels to buying in bulk, the sustainable choices you make can have far-reaching impacts on your budget, your community, and your planet.