Room by Room Steps to Reduce Global Warming and Your Electricity Bill.

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About: I dunno... I like school unlike a lot of people and love science and mechanics. I remember playing Gizmo's and Gadgets when I was young, and love correcting peoples spelling and grammar on the internet. I al...

Intro: Room by Room Steps to Reduce Global Warming and Your Electricity Bill.

This is an instructable designed to cost next to nothing (except in the case of new things like dishwashers:) and reduce out global footprint. A movie I think you should all see first is this Link

This is interesting as well Link

Thanks to Greenpeace for the picture.

Also, basically, no matter what, whether you are a believer in global warming or not, this can help to wean us from non-renewables and save you a little money.

Step 1: Every Room:

Free:
Turn off any appliances you either don't use very often or when you go on holidays.
Instead of turning heaters on high try wearing warmer clothes, and when the heater is on, close off any unused areas of the house and the blinds and curtains.
Instead of using the air conditioner just open windows when there is a cool breeze.
Lastly in the free section, make sure you leave no devices on standby. Standby in devices makes up about 10% of the average power bill.

Pays for itself:
The easiest thing to do is as a bulb blows buy a new replacement which is either a compact fluorescent or an LED bulb. These use a lot less electricity and last a lot longer. Led's last nearly forever and CF's last about 15,000 hours according to the package which is 15 times longer than the average bulb.
Remember though its even better to turn the lights off or just open the blinds! :) When you leave the room flip the switch!
This is a link to see how much energy you will save and to find out what type to buy!This is a link to see how much energy you will save and to find out what type to buy!

Another easy thing to do is to get eneloop or rechargeable batteries for you battery powered devices, for example wireless mice and keyboards, so that:
1. They stay on longer
2. There are no dead batteries being put into landfill.

Not free
Check your insulation, especially around lights and skylights and get it replaced or patched up if it is not completely covering everywhere or not working.

To keep a tiled room warmer try putting a rug down in winter.

What we have achieved this step:
We have reduced landfill, saved energy and become aware of how much energy we waste with incandescent light bulbs.

Step 2: In the Study / Computer Room

Free:
Firstly, in my computer area we have 12 cords plugged in which operate peripherals and others like the printer, scanner, speakers, mouse charger and our external harddrive. These are nearly never in use so when not in use its best to unplug them because standby power can account for 10% of the average power bill. If you want to see how much energy this uses up try this List. You could also buy a thing called the kill a watt Link. and monitor your usage.

Computer standby mode and monitor standby mode are another great way of saving power. Set up your computer screen to go into standby mode by right clicking on the desktop and clicking properties. Now click the Screen Saver tab and then the power button. You can then set the screen to go into standby mode after a certain amount of time. There is also a standby mode where the computer keeps every program saved to the disk and turns everything onto an extremely low power usage, until you move the mouse where it goes back to exactly how it was. This is great if you don't or can't turn off your computer.

Some other things you can do:
1. Recycle or refill toner or ink cartridges
2. Reuse floppy discs to make something like a bird feeder or bag. If you want to make a bird feeder post a comment and I'll work on an instructable. There are other great things similar to this in the go green contest already though, so check them out.

Pays for itself
Buying recycled paper or plantation paper is a great way of saving natural forests.

Costs money
This will cost quite a bit upfront but if you are a frequent computer user it should pay for itself over time. If you have a CFC monitor( A big glass fronted one) you could think of investing in an energy efficient LCD monitor because an LCD panel monitor generates around half as much greenhouse gas as a conventional monitor and adjusting its brightness lower can cut emissions to a quarter. It also gives a clearer picture :)

What we have done this step:
We have saved energy and trees and stopped old toner cartridges going into landfill.

Step 3: Bathroom and Laundry

Free:
1. Put a bucket under the shower when it is heating up and then use it to flush a toilet or water a new tree or plants.
2. Instead of using the heat lamps try using the normal light in the center. they use a lot less energy and give enough light to see with still.
3. When drying clothes, instead of drying them in the dryer, hang them on the washing line, or if it is rainy outside put them on a clothes airer in front of a warm place (fire or heater).
4. Do your teeth quickly and use a towel to dry your hair.

Pays for itself:
Fix leaky taps in the house. It normally only needs a new washer which costs about $1 each. Try seeing how much water is wasted with this drip calculator. Link

Get a AAA shower head in your bathroom. It uses a lot less water!

Not free:
If you need to get a new appliance try getting an energy star compliant model, the higher the stars the better. Also use the economy wash on the dishwasher and the cold wash in the clothes washer.
When getting a new toilet try to get a dual flush model instead of a single flush so when you don't need to flush as heavily (Hint hint) you only use half the amount of water.

What we have done this step:
We have saved water and electricity.

Step 4: Kitchen

I cant really think of much for this step but I'll have a go!

Free:

Turn up your fridge just a little and it should save a little money.

Make a compost bucket in your kitchen and put in vegetable and fruit scraps like peelings and cores. In the next step it will say what to do with these.

Pays for itself:

When buying food, make sure it is not heavily packaged and buy bulk packages instead of smaller packages, for example instead of a 24 pack of drink cans, buy a few large bottles and reuse them for water. The only problem with reusing them is recent studies have said washing them a few times with hot water and detergent can be harmful, but I have always done this and as far as I know am O.K.

Costs money:
This is a simple thing to help the environment, but it may cost more. When buying cooking oil sprays etc. make sure the can is recyclable and is marked with an {{{ITS OK TO SPRAY}}} logo so that it doesn't damage the ozone layer.

What we have done this step:
Reduced landfill further and helped protect the ozone layer.

Step 5: Outside and in the Car

Free:
When it rains put a bucket or two outside and use the water on pot plants or other plants.

If you have a big car and no other cars, how about setting up a car pooling program at your work or catching public transport instead?

With your compost and lawn clippings, find an out of sight corner of your yard and lay down some wet newspapers and pour it there whenever there is too much for the bucket and turn it with a pitchfork every now and again. If this is too gross for your yard consider buying one or making one like thisor this.

Our water heater is outside and we turn down how hot it heats the water in summer and turn it up in winter because we just have a large knob inside the heater for this but if you don't SEEK HELP FROM AN ELECTRICIAN or HEATER REPAIR MAN.
We also have a thing called holiday mode, which keeps the pilot light alight but not heating the water which we turn on when going away.

Pays for itself:
Please suggest something for this step, as I am half brain dead right now and need sleep! Any comments will be welcome!

Not free:
Planting a tree may not be free but is a great idea, especially if you plant native trees or fruit trees. You can water it with the systems I have provided or just with the hose. A tree or even a pot plant is a great addition to homes and is AWESOME ( I needed to say awesome in here somewhere). These people take it to the extreme though Link.

Note 1.From Joyce (contributed).
Even small trees are expensive bought from a nursery. Why not start your own in a pot then plant out. I have started mulberries, peaches etc this way. Seed came from picked or purchased fruit. Or a walk through most parks will yield fallen acorns dogwood berries etc.

Step 6: Well Thats About All the Rooms in My House!

Apart from the bedroom, which is covered in all rooms, that is a list of all the rooms in my house, which concludes this instructable. The last thing to add is that if you are in Australia consider joining this site that I heard about on the radio Freecycle. there may be a UK or US equivalent but I haven't heard of them. All I can say now is good luck and try to convert your friends!

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    115 Discussions

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    VendicarD

    Reply 2 years ago

    CFC's Chlorinated Flurocarbons.

    CF Bubls = Compact Flurescent bulbs

    So I went and measured the drips from my sink, it took 7 drops to fill a 1/4 tsp.
    3 x min x 60min x 24hours X 365days = 1576800 and 1576800 / (7x4x48tspx16cups)=73 gallons per year.

    Sorry hard to type unit conversions online

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    GorillazMiko

    10 years ago on Introduction

    About 1-2 months ago, on the news, they said that global warming is fake, and that what the world does to the atmosphere only effects .3%! It was either .3 or 3%, I forgot, but it was in the news, and they said it was fake. I'm not really sure, but I think we should still save energy and etc...

    2 replies
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    VendicarD

    Reply 2 years ago

    CFC's have been largely replaced with HCFC's which have similar characteristics but oxidize before they reach the ozone layer.

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    lordguildor

    10 years ago on Introduction

    Saving electricity and therefore greenhouse gasses is a very commendable idea. However don't be fooled into thinking that you will save any money in the long term !!!! Think about it the less power we all use the less money the electricity companies will make, less money equals less profit. Neither the companies, nor the shareholders will accept this so they will put the price up. Basically the less power you use the more it will cost therefore not saving !!!!!

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    VendicarDlordguildor

    Reply 2 years ago

    But then they will be able to replace their coal powered plants with natural gas powered plants or wind or solar, or whatever.

    Further the lower your consumption the closer you are to generating your own energy through solar or wind.

    At that point your cost is zero and you have greater independence.

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    pinoymale

    10 years ago on Introduction

    How about turning off the fridge before sleeping and turning it back on when you wake up? Will this damage the fridge and possibly spoil the food?

    3 replies
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    VendicarDpinoymale

    Reply 2 years ago

    The interior will warm and you will have to cool it again. So there will really be no significant net savings.

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    =spider=pinoymale

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Some people, who have the right circumstances, have done away with their fridge. They are usually people with their own veggie garden or a food source very close by who can easily buy single-serve perishable food daily for immediate consumption, or at other times use non-refridgerated food. Living in a cold climate helps a bit. Vegans will find it easier also, as they will have no perishable animal products. It's a bit extreme, and I couldn't do it, but it's one thing to consider.

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    Jdurban
    From analysis of what you have written, your education is limited to some high school. Which strongly indicates that you wouldn't understand the science, even if you had read it.

    Never mind, I presume you understand the cure.

    1 reply
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    Jdurban Your posts reveal a person with strong and immovable views concerning climate science, that are derived from politically ideological pseudo-science but are unalloyed by any ISI peer-reviewed science. When challenged to provide supporting science for your views, you always change the subject, hurl yet more abuse and baseless accusations. Such a technique is commonly used by people who have expressed strident views regarding a subject concerning which they have very shallow understanding. Your attitude would be best summed-up with: “Don't confuse me with the facts, my mind is already made-up! Sayings that sum up your mindset perfectly: “You cannot reason a man out of an opinion into which he was not reasoned to begin with.” Attributed to Benjamin Franklin and Johnathan Swift. “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn't true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” Søren Kierkegaard, 1813 to 1855 Since you evidently don't understand or obdurately refuse to understand what science actually is, you clearly are immune to being persuaded by it. Conversations with people like yourself are unpleasant, tedious, needlessly protracted and are singularly uninformative and completely futile. One might as well as talk to a brick.

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    Jdurbantotally_screwed

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    If anyone ever doubts that global warming isn't more religion than science just look at the depths these people go to protect their unfounded beliefs Look at the panic stricken "Totally_screwed" postings. For one that is so secure in their daffy beliefs look at the sheer panic and rush to judgment that if someone does not share in their ill founded religion that they have to be an unintelligent heretic. Wouldn't these types be devastated to discover that I have an I.Q. of 133, hold 21 patents, 3 pending, with a career of over two hundred product designs some of which are "Green Tech". I was developing green technology 20 years before the term was born. Just google "Jack Durban" or a quick tour of the U.S. and European office will suffice. You will also see that I work in the field of free energy and I am helping engineers to replicate the only modern era device that actually functioned and was not a fraud. I am an environmentalist right up to the wobbly global warming theory where it is so laden with half-truths and junk science that only a fool could buy into it 's many unfounded and unscientific claims. Now I leave you to get back to the lab where we work in the real world and not hysteria or agenda driven pseudo science.

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    VendicarDJdurban

    Reply 2 years ago

    Jack Durbin, Perpetual motion quack.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cRJHtl6LyP4

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    homunkolossJdurban

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    I also think the Climate Change is happening. But even it would not I think it would be better to reduce the emissions of cars cause they pollute our world. And would anything bad happen cause of trying to need less energy ? mfg Daniel

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    tornadoboy

    10 years ago on Introduction

    All I've got to say is that if Al Gore doesn't like my "footprint", he can leave his heated swimming pool at his mansion, take his private jet to Boston and have his SUV-driving armada of a security team escort him to my house so he can tell me in person.