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Posts Tagged ‘conserve’

I recently read an article on how to cut your grocery bill. Here, I will share some tips from that article and some of my own that will help you save money and save the environment. Let’s get started:

1) Don’t buy a product (especially a food product) for the “cool” factor. Products made to be more convenient or to look “cool” will cost you unnecessarily more. Additionally, many of these products use extra packaging. So, you’re mostly paying for the appearance of the product and its packaging. Extra packaging means more waste in our landfills.

Here are a couple of examples of what I think is the “cool” factor:

          

2) Don’t shop when you’re hungry! My husband and I have fallen prey to this one before, and it’s true: you buy more when you’re hungry. Not only that, but you buy extra processed, junk foods that are not good for you when you’re hungry. And more than that, when you buy more (especially perishables) than  you can eat, it typically goes to waste.

3) Don’t go to the grocery store every time you need something. Throughout the week, make a list of what you’ll need for the next week. Plan out your meals and include all of the ingredients you don’t already have on next week’s list. Then, hit the store ONCE. This will save you time, stress, gas and probably money since you’ll be tempted to buy extra less often since you’ll be in the store less often.

I have an app on my iPad called Grocery IQ that allows me to make a really convenient grocery list. The app is FREE and is also available for iPhone. Check it out!

I’m sure this is not a comprehensive list. How have you changed your shopping habits to save money and to be “greener”? Add your thoughts here!

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Summer is coming and if you live in Wisconsin like me, you’ve already experienced some summer heat this spring. Here are several tips for how to stay cool this summer while staying green and without going broke.

1) Keep your shades closed. Thermal curtains or light-blocking curtains are relatively inexpensive and can be bought at Shopko. These curtains will keep the light and/or heat out in the summer, reducing your need to artificially cool your home.

A storm took out one of our trees last summer and unfortunately, it was the tree on the west side of the house that produced nice shade for our home. So, now on warmer days, the sun beats in through our living room windows in the evening, heating up the whole lower level of the house. To make up for the loss of shade and natural cooling feature of our tree, I recently bought some curtains to block out the light:

2) Use fans. Fans still use electricity, but they use less energy than air conditioners. When possible, use fans rather than central air or an air conditioning unit to cool your home. On the especially hot and humid days when you do need to artificially cool your home, keep your thermostat set higher (in the mid-70s) and turn on some fans to cool you down.

3) Keep the cool air in! Caulk around windows and use weather-stripping on doors to keep the cool air in and the heat out. Also, add insulation with a high “R” rating to your attic. This is initially an expensive purchase, but will pay off in energy savings all year every year.

For more tips on how to keep your home cool without breaking the bank this summer, visit the All You blog.

How do you cool your home in green ways? Has much money have you saved?

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Beyond reducing what we consume, or buy, we can also reduce how much energy we use on a daily basis.

There are tons of great articles and blogs out there with tips for making your homes more energy-efficient and learning to save money by cutting back on energy consumption. Here are the top seven practical tips I’ve found for reducing the energy you use:

1) Conserve heat in your home by adding insulation to your home, filling in cracks around windows and doors and using weather-stripping.

2) Conserve energy by air-drying laundry. Walmart sells drying racks that you can put up inside your house. To hang your shirts inside, use something like this, which my husband built for me. During the warmer seasons, a clothesline can also be used outside.

3) Wash all of your laundry in cold water to save energy. The blog Strive to Simplify suggests that switching to cold water when doing laundry saves 25 cents per load, which adds up to about $65 in savings per year for the average household.

4) When you are asleep or not home, program your thermostat to hold the temperature five degrees cooler than when you’re home.

5) Frugal Living suggests that you keep your fridge and freezer full. The food acts as an insulator and keeps the food cooler without requiring your refrigerator to run.

6) Drive the speed limit! According to The Bargainlist blog, driving faster is less fuel-efficient. Using cruise control can also save energy because it reduces the amount of heavy accelerating and heavy braking required when your cruise is not set.

7) Have a professional conduct a home energy audit, which will show you where you’re wasting the most energy and offer the best solutions to your specific problems. Green Living Ideas offers some great advice for having a home energy audit done.

For more great energy and money-saving tips, visit Frugal Living‘s blog.

I’d love to hear your suggestions for reducing energy on a daily basis! Please share your comments here!

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