Are you a chef? Do you like to spend hours in the kitchen with family and
friends? Depending on how much you use the kitchen from day to day, you
could be wasting a lot of money on water and electricity that could be
saved with the right improvements. Moreover, making sustainable improvements
to your kitchen will increase its value during a sale and help the environment.
If you're considering a few eco-friendly upgrades to the kitchen, here
are some places to start:
Add LED lighting
It isn't easy to cook meals in a dark kitchen, which means keeping
the lights on from the time preparation starts until the meal's ready.
With all that watt usage, why not save some money and light up the kitchen
even more with LED lights? LED lighting is more energy-efficient than
fluorescent bulbs, lasts longer and shines brightly without any buzzing
or other annoying noises. By replacing the bulbs in the kitchen with LED,
you can keep the lights on and pay a fraction of what it takes to keep
Install Energy Star appliances
Appliances are a daily necessity in the kitchen for cooking and keeping
food fresh. These appliances can use a lot of electricity, especially
in the case of ovens and refrigerators. To save on electricity, invest
in energy-efficient appliances that are certified by the Department of
Energy. They will have the label Energy Star, as they have been approved
to save energy by the federal government.
Upgrade your flooring and cut down on maintenance.
While it might not seem apparent at first, the type of flooring in your
kitchen might not be as sustainable as you think. For example, hardwood
flooring might look beautiful and endure fairly well, but its maintenance
requires regular staining and possible refinishing of certain areas which
releases emissions into the air of your home. You should consider an
alternative flooring option like bamboo or certain types of tile that require less maintenance and
cut down on emissions.
Replace your cabinets with green alternatives
Cabinetry endures a lot of wear and tear from years of opening and closing.
To keep them in good shape, you may need to refinish or replace them.
In such cases, you should consider installing energy-efficient cabinets
made of bamboo, lyptus or wheat board. The production that goes into making
these cabinets is less harmful to the environment, and they require less
chemical maintenance than hardwood, plastic or metal cabinets. If you
decide to paint them, do not use VOC paints as they have many chemicals
that could release into the air on hot days.
Increase water efficiency in your sink
A sink can use a lot of water when you wash your hands, vegetables or meats
during food preparation. If they have inefficient faucets, you run the
risk of wasting tons of water which negatively impacts the environment
and your community. To cut down on water usage and save money, replace
the faucet in your sink with a low-flow option and also consider installing
a sink that lasts longer and requires less maintenance.
Andrea Davis is the editor for HomeAdvisor, which helps homeowners find home improvement professionals in their area
at no charge to ensure the best service in the shortest amount of time.