6 Ways to Make Your Home More Eco-Friendly
We highlight some ways, both big and small, that you can adopt eco-friendly habits for your home
Homes adopt the lifestyles of its inhabitants, reflecting what the owner values and practices. So if a healthy environment and a sustainable lifestyle are on your list of priorities, here are six suggestions to imbue your domain with these eco-friendly habits.
1) Get Ticked Off
The three biggest electricity-guzzlers in a home are the air-conditioner, refrigerator and clothes dryer. A mandatory energy labelling scheme, enacted by the National Environment Agency (NEA) in 2008, segments these appliances into three categories labelled with zero to four ticks. Choose those with four ticks, such as Gaggenau’s Vario 200 cooling refrigerator series, which indicate they are the most energy efficient. Aside from its low energy consumption, the sleek form and fully extendable shelves and drawers make it an ideal complement to any kitchen setup.
Gaggenau Vario 200 refrigerator
2) Tap Dance
Replace faulty showerheads with Hansgrohe’s Raindance AIR, which is equipped with an EcoSmart regulator, to reduce the flow of water without affecting the quality of your shower experience. The technology is inspired by waterfalls in nature to swirl together water and air on the inside of the shower head, replacing the continuously flowing needle-like jets with a shower of raindrops.
3) Stay Cool
Blinds and shutters are practical options for dealing with heat, light, and noise. Roller shutters are capable of cutting down heat intake by up to 90 per cent, black out light by 99 per cent, and lowering outside noise levels by up to 10 decibels. The 15-year-old wood shutter specialist, www.finewoodshutter.com, offers made-to-measure and bespoke services for windows of all sizes.
Fine Wood Shutter
If you have paper, glass, plastic, aluminum, and electronic items to dispose of, consider recycling instead. Sort your trash diligently to separate these items, and contact environmental services firms like Veolia if your neighbourhood currently does not have a recycling pick-up programme. NEA also has online resources for collection centres, recycling facilities, and guidebooks for setting up waste recycling programmes for condominiums and private apartments.
5) Unclog the Pipes
Most mass-market cleansers contain petrochemicals, phosphates, optical whiteners, parabens, formaldehyde and hormone disrupters like chlorine. These are not good for the body nor the environment – the residue harms aquatic life and may create bacterial mutation. Use detergent alternatives such as soap nuts – naturally occuring seeds that contain saponins – available from Bhutan Shop, which are anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial.
6) Quality Over Quantity
When it comes to furnishings, the more durable it is, the less likely you need to replace it. Space Furniture emphasises the importance of quality of materials, standards of manufacture, and durability of design in your search for the perfect seating appointment. Their Emeco Navy chair comes with a 150-year warranty, and is crafted from 80 per cent recycled aluminum. Emeco has also partnered with Coca Cola to create the 111 Navy chair, each made from 111 recycled PET Coke bottles.
Emeco Navy chairs
Pictures courtesy of respective brands
This story is adapted from "Six Habits of Highly Efficient Green Homes", published in Singapore Tatler Homes Jun-Jul 2012 issue.