The modern era has made our lives easier with technology and gadgets. However, with time, using these gadgets has exhausted mother nature. It’s unlikely that our technology usage will decrease, but there are ways to use devices and contribute positively to the earth. For example, many companies manufacture eco-friendly products to balance technology and heal our planet.
Meaning of Eco-Friendly
Eco-friendly means not doing any harm to the environment. These products do not pollute land, air, and water, starting from manufacturing to packaging and delivery.
How To Choose An Eco-Friendly Product
With so many companies claiming to produce eco-friendly products, it can be hard to identify which gadgets are genuinely environmentally friendly. However, three basic principles can help you determine if a product is eco-friendly:
Eco-friendly products are made from materials that you can recycle. You can research the gadget to identify what materials are used to produce it. Some common recyclable materials you can find in technology include aluminum, iron alloys, and biomaterial.
2. Production Process
Eco-friendly products are manufactured with sustainable operations that produce low waste. For example, an eco-friendly gadget could be made using solar power as opposed to electricity.
They should help consumers consider being environmentally conscious at all times by being reusable. For example; the use of reusable bags
You can often find a unique symbol on the packaging of eco-friendly technology. Eco-labels indicate a product has undergone third-party certification from a well-known company. Some common eco-label on technology include 80 Plus, B Corporation, and CarbonCare.
Reasons for Using Eco-Friendly Products
Shifting to an eco-friendly product may not be cheap in the beginning, but it has lasting results. Some of the long-lasting benefits associated with using eco-friendly devices include:
- Increase property value
- Easy to maintain
- Reduce utility bills
- Safe to use
- Improve indoor air quality
- Reduce carbon footprint
Top 9 Eco-Friendly Gadgets
We all need to take up methods that protect the environment by living an environmentally conscious lifestyle. Here is a selection of eco-friendly appliances that you can use in your homes:
1. Dual Flush Toilet System
The toilet is one place that is often overlooked, but it’s a device that uses a significant amount of water.
Upgrading to a dual flush toilet system will significantly reduce your water usage. A dual flush system saves water by using a smaller amount of water for liquid waste compared to solid waste. When you opt for a dual flush system, you won’t need to replace your plumbing system since it's only the flushing mechanism that changes.
2. Go the Solar Panel Way
Installing solar panels may be expensive at first, but they are cost-efficient in the long run. Using the sun instead of electricity is better for the planet while still producing the energy you need for your home.
The type of solar panel you need depends on how much the sun reaches your home. Ensure that you assess the solar energy potential of your home before purchasing any gadget. Also, you will need to budget in a battery that will help you store energy for use when the sun is down.
3. Use Thermostats
Thermostats are a clever way to save on costs and energy. This eco-friendly device allows you to adjust the temperature of your home so you can save energy.
In an averagely rated US home, heating and cooling take up to 50% energy consumption. The best thing about a thermostat is that it adjusts your home's temperatures whether you are present or not. The thermostat slowly readjusts based on your home and habits and adjusts temperatures accordingly.
4. Use Smart LED Bulbs
Another way of introducing energy-saving techniques into your home is by replacing old bulbs with new LED bulbs. These bulbs need less power to produce light which reduces carbon dioxide emissions. LED bulbs also produce less heat which helps keep cooling costs lower.
You can also adjust your indoor and outdoor lights remotely using your smartphone. This makes it easier to remember to turn the lights off, which saves energy and decreases greenhouse gas emissions. You can install a program that sends messages to your phone whenever lights have been left on.
5. Add Window Treatments
Another eco-friendly idea for your home is window treatments which help keep the house cool. With the many available options, you can now reduce your home's HVAC energy consumption by installing windows with blinds between the glass. The best thing about these integral blinds is that you can retrofit them into your existing windows instead of buying new ones. In addition to added privacy, these blinds will help you save on your utility bills and keep your home naturally air-conditioned.
6. Insulate your Home
Insulating your home is another well-known technique to help save your money and cut down energy usage. You can start the insulation process on the wall and the attic by spraying foam, one of the top insulators for most homes. Once it is attached to the surface, it hardens and forms a blanket-like cover that seals off everything. In addition to its eco-friendly benefits, insulation prevents mold formation in your house.
7. Install A Solar Water Heater
Most electric home water heaters consume around 17% of your home's energy use. An eco-friendly alternative is a solar water heater. While the initial installation cost is high, this fantastic appliance will help you save at least 50-80% of what you would be using on your utility bills.
Like a solar panel, solar water heaters also use the sun as the energy source instead of electricity. The sun’s energy heats fluid in the solar collectors, which then travels to the storage tank and transfers the heat to the water. This fluid is non-freezing which means this eco-friendly option is ideal year-round.
8. Use an Aerated or Low-Flow Showerhead
Most of us take long showers, which wastes a lot of water. Opting for a low-flow showerhead can save an average of 20,000 liters of water yearly. This eco-friendly device limits the amount of water you use in the shower, conserving water and reducing your water heating bill.
9. Add Skylights
Skylights or windows on the roof are eco-friendly options that sufficiently supply your home with natural light and fresh air. With the natural light and heat that comes through skylights, you can reduce the electric lighting and heating in your home. However, it’s important to note that these windows could mean that you need more air conditioning during the summer.
Going green has never been easy. However, adopting these simple eco-friendly upgrades will help you save money and positively impact the environment. If you’re interested in adding eco-friendly devices to your home, research how they were produced, analyze their usage, or check for an eco-label.
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Jennifer Bell is a freelance writer, blogger, dog-enthusiast, and avid beachgoer operating out of Southern New Jersey.