Wind Turbines

September 18, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

Wind turbines harvest the power of wind into energy that can fuel anything direct it toward. Whilst It might seem that of your renewable energy options for the home, a wind turbine is impractical. If you live in an environment that doesn’t get much sun and is a windy it may be your primary option. One of the best features to wind turbines made for the home is that they don’t take up much room when compared to solar panels, and they don’t need to be angled toward the source of energy as they will do that themselves. Domestic wind turbines come in a variety of shapes and sizes as the technology develops a certain design will prevail but that has not happened as yet. As with all renewable energy sources the problem lies with not only the initial cost of setup, but also in the storage of generated energy, this is why it is best to have the turbine hooked up to the grid which the house gets its energy from, this also provides the potential of income from surplus energy feed back into the grid. Wind turbines start at around $400 for 400Watts and go all the way to millions of dollars for industrial sized models, keep in mind that the average American household uses 30KW per day.

Light Dimmers

September 18, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

Light fittings are one of the few electrical devices in our houses with just two functions, just on and off. Dimmers can be installed to adjust the settings and brightness of light fittings allowing you to not only control the brightness of a room but also adjust the amount of expelled energy by controlling the emitted voltage supplied to the fitting.  They are able to be fitted onto incandescent, halogen and compact fluorescent lighting so cover the most common lighting in the house. The applicable savings are quite relative as dimming your lights even 20% saves nearly 20% in energy. Dimmers can cost anywhere from $5 to $50 but the majority of installation cost will come from the electricians bill.

Water Heater Insulatation

September 16, 2011 Posted by Tlittle


The Water Heating  in your house accounts for about 10 – 20% of your annual energy costs. Water heaters are usually located in the basement, garage or some other non-heated utility section of the house, the difference in temperature between the desired water temp (120-140 Degrees f) and surrounding temp is why there can be such a great stress on energy usage. If the outside of your water heater feels warm to touch, then you are loosing efficiency through lack of insulation. Modern Water Heaters are insulated so they wont emit as much heat, but older Water Heaters can be aftermarket insulated using a ‘Water Heater Wrap Blanket’, this insulation keeps the heat locked in and especially when hot water is not being used it reduces the amount of energy the system uses (around 15%) to maintain the water body’s temperature.  Wrap Blankets cost $15-$30 and are very easy to install.





Shower & Faucet Aerators

September 16, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

The average American uses between 40 – 80 Gallons of water each day and over half of that is with running

water from the  Faucet and Shower. Standard faucet aerators will allow flow rates of 2.5 – 5 gallons of water per minute and bathroom low-flow aerators attachments deliver 0.5 to 1 gallon of water per minute whilst emitting a similar force of spray with an even spray pattern. These same figures are applicable to the shower head fixtures

They can take anywhere from 1 to 20mins to install and cost from $1-$30 making it one of the easiest and cheapest things to do to manage your water usage at home.








Indoor Plants

September 15, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

Air Pollutants and toxins are an increasing danger in the house that can lead of a number of health issues of notable severity. This is why we utilize air filters, ceiling fans, AC units,  opening of windows and other methods to combat the presence of these harmful substances.

Whilst often thought of as aesthetic features, the inclusion of Houseplants acts as a natural filter to counteract the effects of the complex chemicals in the house as well as stabalise the balance of internal humidity.

Recent NASA research on the contaminant absorbing qualities of indoor plants has found that they are so effective at air filtration that some will be included aboard in future launched space missions. The studies focused on the effects of common chemicals found in the house including; ’Formaldehyde’ which is found in everything from particle board or pressed wood products, paper products, shopping Bags, floor coverings, carpet backings and permanent-press clothes. ’Benzene’ which is used in the manufacturing of detergents, explosives, pharmaceuticals, and dyes, and further found in gasoline, inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber. Trichloroethylene (TCE) used in printing inks, paints, lacquers, varnishes, and adhesives. Finally, Carbon Monoxide which needs little introduction as it was the original gas chosen for the gas chamber. Each of these chemicals has been found to be the cause of everything from headaches to Cancer.

When Choosing plants for the house It is important to select a suitable position not only cater to the plant’s photosynthetic needs, but also as to where it will be in the best position to filter drafts and moving air. It is recommended that a plant be allocated to each 90 sqft of each common room in the house to adequately contribute toward good air quality.

The following plant species are recommended to be kept as indoor plants due their all round ability to absorb toxins and easy of keeping/durability.

Ceiling Fans

September 15, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

Air circulation in the house is crucial for the keeping an odor free environment and moving out any pollutants that can accumulate in the house from stagnant air. Whilst Air conditioning units can mechanically drive this airflow, the energy used to run these systems is by far the greatest of any device in the average household (See below).

10 – 100 Watts:           Ceiling Fan (no Lights)
600-1500 Watts:       Electric Space Heaters
600-3000 Watts:      Room Air Conditioners
2000-5000 Watts:    Central Air Conditioning Units

The instalation and use of a ceiling fan can greatly reduce the reliance on the AC system by circulating the air within the house, hereby creating a wind chill effect effectively cooling the people in the room whilst not actually cooling the room.

Operating the fan in reverse in the Winter produces a gentle updraft which circulates the warm air that has risen to the top of the room downward and thus stabilizes the air column, this in turn should allow for you to adjust your thermostat settings to a lower temperature. Much like lighting a room that is unoccupied, it doesn’t make much sense to have a fan on in a room with nobody in it.

Water Filters

September 15, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

An estimate of 200 Billion bottles of water are consumed annually and the US market makes up

around 25% of that. The Bottled water industry has developed dramatically over the past 30 years and in that time come under huge scrutiny due to the negative environmental effects of packaging and transportation as well as the impacts of production through groundwater extraction.


Installing a water filtration system in the house  will eliminate or greatly reduce the dependency on bottled water. Filtration  systems range in price from around $20-$200 a water filtration system and can be very easy to install.  Add that price to the cost of tap water being just 5% of the average bottled water price and it makes sense to install one. Some products attach onto the end of the faucets and others are installed in the plumbing. 

Energy Efficient Appliances

September 15, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

Appliances generally contribute to 15% of the house energy bill, and If you were to look at the energy efficiency of modern dishwashers, refrigerators, and washing machines which can save up to 75%  of energy compared to the appliances in the average house (especially if they are older than 20yrs) . It makes plenty of sense to update them taking advantage of the approved rating systems.

Keep in mind that front loader washing machines use less energy that top-loaders, Refrigerators with a top or bottom freezer use less energy than their side-by-side counterparts, and it will aid in the fridge’s efficiency to position it away from the sun or windows. Dishwasher technology is developing in such a way that in order for a current model to gain an approved ‘Energy Star’ it must be over 40% more efficient than the average standard in 2007.



Phosphorus Lighting

September 15, 2011 Posted by Tlittle

Whilst the concept of energy efficient lighting is not a new one, only about 10% of residential sockets in the US utilize compact fluorescent bulbs. The average house has around 40 light sockets, and the total residential lighting tab contributes to around 20% of the total US electricity bill which in turn equates to over 50 Billion dollars.

Energy saving light bulbs use up to 80 per cent less electricity than standard bulbs and last around ten times as long.

This is one of the easiest projects to implement in your home, so please make the change.

Welcome to

September 15, 2011 Posted by Tlittle aims to provide sufficient information and insipiration to people in the hope they will embrace a practical approach to Green Housing and sustainable living with a focus on the modification, renovation, and refurbishment of their current house.

It is inevitable that the developing Green technologies in building lead toward more efficient structures being built, but with a potential effective life of most common residence’s being 100yrs (the USA having 130 Million alone, with an average age of 30 yrs), it is important that we address modifying these buildings to reach their sustainable efficiency potential.