Green buildings are in! Opting for an eco-friendly remodeling for your home is one of the best choices you’ll ever make. Not only are you creating a positive impact on the environment, but it’s also providing a healthy and efficient home. Listed below, are some basic tips on eco-friendly remodeling.
G – Global
R – Recycle/ Regenerate
E – Efficiency
E – Ergonomics
N – Nature
Global. The first step in eco-friendly remodeling that you can do is to think global, that is, being aware of the goals of the sustainable movement and how to achieve them. A simple switch of flooring, for example, can make a great impact on the environment. Instead of going with industrial carpet or hefty hardwoods one can opt for bamboo, reclaimed wood or natural linoleum. Most industrial carpets or even laminated floors can leave a heavy carbon footprint in the environment. Most carpets are manufactured using petroleum and formaldehyde to glue them together which are both harsh chemicals.
Green living is a worldwide movement where a lot of building systems, materials, and ideas are being developed in different parts of the globe. Technology allows homeowners to pick up simple yet effective ideas on the web from different sources.
Recycle. Recycling is not a new idea and this is one effective eco-friendly remodeling option a homeowner can implement. As more people learn to recycle, more and more construction products are being made from recycled materials. Reusing materials instead of dumping them in landfills saves valuable resources; by actively looking for and buying products with recycled content, you encourage the recycling industry.
Energy Efficiency. In connection to recycling, energy efficiency is another issue which you as a homeowner should consider when having an eco-friendly remodeling. The use of electricity and other HVAC systems are major concerns when it comes to home energy efficiency which is costly to operate plus leaves a huge carbon footprint to the environment. To reduce consumption and use of energy at home, you can opt to have
Major Remodeling. The most common in today’s sustainable buildings is the use of solar energy. You may go for solar panels or solar grids depending on one’s location to utilize the sun’s energy. This can be a major remodeling to your home but the benefits are endless. Solar tubes or clerestories can also be used for areas where natural light is unreachable. These lessen the use of electricity as well as provide a healthy dosage of Vitamin D to building occupants.
Minor Remodeling. You can opt to have window blinds made of bamboo instead of heavy curtains for your windows. This can reduce heat retention and can also provide good airflow into the structure. Bamboo, rattan, and seaweed are popular materials used for sustainable furniture. You can also find a good looking and durable eco-friendly furniture that can fit either for outdoor or interior use.
Ergonomics. When talking about ergonomics this focuses on the impact of the building living environment to its occupants while sustainable buildings focus more on the impact of the structure on the environment. Though different in their goals ergonomics and sustainability can go hand in hand. When choosing to do eco-green remodeling always consider ergonomics. A good example is on choosing furniture, though you may be having bamboo or wicker furniture for your living room, make sure that it’s comfortable to use even for long periods of time.
“Green ergonomics” was coined as a term that refers to the integration of ergonomics into the sustainable design in achieving a healthy and productive environment for both the individual or occupant and the systems or organizational level.
Nature. Like any other type of building construction or design, a builder or a designer should always consult with nature. Having simple pocket gardens or having inside plants is already a good way to provide fresh air and cool down a home’s temperature. Though it may be a simple step most homeowners do neglect the importance of incorporating nature into their homes.
When it comes to major eco-friendly remodeling of a home, as mentioned in energy efficiency, solar tubes can be a great way to provide natural lighting to hard-to-reach areas such as basements or kitchens. One can also provide natural ventilation and circulation of air by using the concept of “passive cooling”. If you can afford to have your lawns changed into the grass instead of concrete or have a fountain or a small pool then this can help in providing additional cooling systems at home this can reduce surface heat retention during the hot season.