This was written by Kelli Cooper of Smart Pack Kit kitchen renovations.
As environmental problems are gaining greater attention and awareness, there is a push to be more eco-friendly in all areas of life. There are lots of ways for the average individual to be greener and how we design our homes can have a major impact on how good a friend we are being to the environment. If you are thinking of remodeling your kitchen and you want a more environmentally-consious design, here are some tips to help you design a beautiful , greener kitchen.
Choose Eco-Friendly Flooring and Cabinet Materials
The materials we choose in our remodeling efforts is one of the most important decisions we make in terms of being more environmentally friendly; we want to choose products that do not harm the environment and/or are highly sustainable. Bamboo is a great choice for floors or countertops—this highly sustainable grass is not only durable, it is a great choice for people with allergies and other respiratory illnesses since it discourages the growth of bacteria and other irritants. You will be able to achieve the look of wood without contributing to the cutting-down of valuable trees. Cork is another great flooring choice while some good counterop materials include recycled glass in a concrete mix, stained concrete and indigenous stone.
Get Energy-Efficient Appliances
Conserving electricity will not only help you be green, it will help you save some green on your utility bills. Look for appliances with the ‘’Energy Star’’ label; these products have been evaluated by the Environmental Protection Agency and to gain the designation, they must meet certain standards of energy efficiency, provide similar levels of performance as conventional products and if they cost more than their conventional counterparts, the cost savings must be enough that you would recoup the costs in a reasonable amount of time. By choosing more energy-efficient appliances, you not only conserve electricity, you are reducing the amount of green house gases and other pollutants produced from inefficient energy use.
Get a More Energy-Efficient Stove
Stoves that use induction heating are very eco-friendly; since they heat up faster and cook food faster, they are using less enery on two fronts. These stoves use electricity to create a magnetic field that interacts with the ferric content in various types of cookware; this encourages the movement of molecules, which produces heat.
Install an Under-the-Counter Water Purifier
This tip may not apply to your kitchen directly, but it sure is eco-friendly when you consider the astronomical amount of waste created from drinking bottled water. An under-the-counter water purifer is 10 times more effective at filtering bacteria, pesticides and heavy metal than a purifier connected to your faucet. It may seem pricier at 150 to 200 dollars for a filter, but considering what we pay for bottled water, you will reap savings over the long-term.
Reuse Anything You Can
Before totally gutting your kitchen and buying new everything, look around and see what can be salvaged or repurposed for something else. Maybe you do not need new cabinets and refinishing them will give you the look you want. Maybe that old wardrobe in the attic can make a good pantry. If you need new materials for anything, look in salvage yards for any materials you can use in your remodeling efforts—for example, old pine beams can be used to put down new flooring.
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