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Old 07-08-2008, 06:25 PM
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What are you doing to reduce your energy/gas/waste???

Well, I've been trying to save money and to go green at the same time and one thing I noticed is that people often have natural light either in can-form or skylights when I see shows about green houses. Well, I can't do that but what I thought was I could still have natural light streaming into my house which would reduce my consumption and my bill and I could do that by opening the tops of my blinds and keeping the bottom part closed-(one reason is that I have EXTREMELY NOSY NEIGHBORS and another is that it would help keep the house cool if I blocked some of the sun). So, I did that with all of my windows and I open up my front door-(I have contact paper at the bottom part of my screen door to block nosy people from seeing directly in). Well, it was still dark, so I decided I needed to figure out my front window...so I took a shear curtain and put it at the top and took a darker curtain-(all of which I already had)-and put it down further to block anyone from seeing but also to be able to allow light to stream in until the very last drop and it worked!!! I don't have to turn on my lights-(which are energy efficient bulbs) until around 10 in the summer.

I also wanted to dry foods but didn't want a food dehydrater going all night cranking up my bill so I fashioned a table top food dryer using two pieces of wood, some screening, and plexiglass I already have. It can be used outdoors so that food is dried via the sun or inside on rainy days which is currently the case, so I have it on top of my deep freezer.

So what are you doing???
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Old 07-08-2008, 07:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leasmom
Well, I've been trying to save money and to go green at the same time and one thing I noticed is that people often have natural light either in can-form or skylights when I see shows about green houses.
leasmom....You are doing a good job reducing your energy costs.
I do have suntubes to light up my kitchen, dining room and one bathroom without a window. There is a plexiglass dome on the roof that has aluminum pipes that reflect light to the rooms. Some times when the sun is overhead it is real bright. Love when there is a full moon looks so pretty. I know I am saving alot since I don't have to put the lights on until it is dark outside. I have the film on the windows where people cannot look in but I can see out. It also reflects to keep the house cooler. Keeping blinds closed when the sun is hitting helps too. Putting a sliding screen door in the garage keeps the garage cooler keeping the rest of the house cooler too. Cars last longer when they are out of the heat all day.
Keep up the good work.
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Old 07-09-2008, 04:02 AM
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Thanks. You're doing an excellent job. Keeping the house cooler is especially important where you are in Florida, so good for you, Sueanne.
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Old 07-09-2008, 06:56 AM
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I have been working pretty hard to reduce my energy/gas consumption.

In the car, I will turn the AC on until the car has cooled down and then I turn it off and the fan on high. This will usually keep it cool for about 10 minutes. Generally, that is enough to get me where I'm headed. The AC really seems to use a lot of gas. However, I have read that having the windown open at speeds above 40 mph isn't any better than having the AC on. Most of the roads around here have speed limits of 40 or above.

During the day, when the sun is shining I keep all of my blinds and curtains closed. As soon as the sun moves, I reopen the shades and let the natural light in. At night, I raise the temperature on the AC since we have ceiling fans in all of the rooms. And with all of the blinds opened up after dinner, I can usually leave the lights off until about 9:00.

I hang dry my laundry, except for bath towels. I make sun tea, cook outside on the grill as much as possible and use the microwave more to keep the kitchen cooler.

Now I'm starting to focus on what I can do this winter to keep the house warmer and reduce our heating costs. Any ideas?

Kathy
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Old 07-09-2008, 06:25 PM
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Man, thats a great question...I kept my heat on 65, which is what it turns on at for as long as I could and then there were days that I had it on at 85. But I would always turn my heat off at night unless we absolutely couldn't do that. Then I forgot a few times and came home during 60 degree weather and the heat was left on-ugh!!!

I'm signed up for those shut-off protection programs but I have to pay all year long for heat esp. in the summer that's when the price goes up. Last year I was paying for the summer's light/water until Feb. But by keeping my gas down I noticed that my bill, though still high, it went from $56 to $90, isn't as bad as it could've been. And I'm hoping that I know that I've reduced my water, I haven't been able to line dry because it keeps raining so much here but I have cut down on my laundry and I don't let Lea waste the water outside like last year, they had the pool filling up everyday because they couldn't find the plug...UGH! So, just with finding the pools plug this year has saved on water along with buying clorine tablets and covering the pool. Now if I could only get Lea to do the dishes-(small or large amount)-in less than 2 hrs!!!
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Old 07-10-2008, 10:06 AM
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Here is a picture of our dried tea!

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Old 07-10-2008, 12:21 PM
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What kind of herbs are those that you are using for tea. Just made myself a cup of red basil leaf tea right from the garden. Was surprised the tea came out dark green. I usually cook mine fresh and put some in a vase of water so it lasts for a couple of days. Sometimes it roots giving me new plants.
A good way to dry your herbs is in your car windows. With the doors and windows shut.
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Old 07-11-2008, 05:25 AM
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Its chocolate mint and regular mint. I also have spearmint and peppermint as well but I got them from a nursery that weren't watering their plants well and so the leaves were brown but now they're green, so once they grow longer I'm gonna make a mix. I never heard of red basil tea before..where do you get it?
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Old 07-11-2008, 06:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leasmom
I never heard of red basil tea before..where do you get it?
I bought the plant in target in their gardening dept. All their herbs were very hardy and cost less than other stores. I find the teas refreshing and basil has good healing properties.
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Old 07-11-2008, 10:30 AM
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I use the clothes line as much as possible. I rarely use my AC in my Jeep. It has to be really hot for me to use it.
There was a flier in our current electric bill and it had a section about hanging clothes on lines to dry. They said that people rarely hang clothes anymore and the dryer uses alot of electricity.
We are thinking about how we are going to save energy this winter. We already wear sweaters, etc.

Well that's just my two cents.
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