Imagine your life as a superhero. Spending your days and nights soaring above downtown skylines, fending off villains and saving the world. Sounds pretty cool, right?
Now come back to reality. Luckily, you don’t need spider-like senses or super-human strength to be a true hero. You, too, can save the world — by making eco-friendly choices every day and maintaining a household that uses energy efficiently and produces a lower carbon footprint.
So let’s find out: Are you already living the hero lifestyle? Take this quiz to see.
How did you fare? For the heroes of the house you likely already know the importance of making eco-conscious choices when it comes to your home. (Bonus: Share your tips with us and others through Friday, March 31, 2017, for your chance to win a gift card!)
If you’ve got some work to do, don’t fret — with a little more training, you too can become a hero! And for all homeowners, there’s always more to learn and ways to help. To get you started, we’ve put together 5 household challenges you can take on. Check them out!
Most kitchens are full of devices and appliances that use loads of energy. For this challenge, try narrowing your focus to your dishwasher. Starting today, air-dry your dishes instead of using the heated dry cycle, cutting your dishwasher energy use by 15-50%! Some models have this as a specific setting; for older models, simply turn the dishwasher off once the load is finished, and crack the door to allow air in. No more kitchen nightmares here! (Don’t have a dishwasher? Create your own challenge from these other kitchen tips.)
We know, it feels great to feel fresh and clean. But starting today, consider shortening your shower to save both energy and water! Even one less minute in the shower can save up to five gallons of water, depending on your showerhead. To go the extra mile, install a low-flow shower head, which produces about two gallons per minute versus the typical five.
Want an easy way to cut down on your home’s cooling and heating costs? Enlist the help of some well-positioned decor! Blackout curtains are a great way to block out heat in the summer, and keep heat in during the winter. In fact, they can reduce thermal loss by up to 25%.
Did you know that leaving electronic devices plugged in can use 5-10% of your household electricity? Take charge by unplugging devices as soon as you’re done with them or using a power strip for even easier control. For computers, make sure you have a sleep mode set instead of leaving it idle.
Note: You may have already guessed it, but this tip applies to all rooms, not just the bedroom!
Making eco-friendly choices extends to the outside of your home too! For example, did you know that planting trees outside can actually reduce your heating and cooling expenses? To reap the benefits, plant deciduous tree (those that shed their leaves seasonally) on the east, west, and northwest sides of your home. Doing this can reduce air conditioning needs by 30% and can save 20-50% of your heating costs.
Texans in the Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston areas can now worry about one less thing when it comes to maintaining their home — especially with summer on the horizon! That’s because StarTex Power and Constellation Home are offering a 2-in-1 plan that bundles your AC protection with your StarTex Power electricity plan.