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baby at window winter

When looking to save money on energy bills and improving energy efficiency, here are a few ideas on how to heat your home sustainability and simply.

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As we learned over Christmas, Baby, it’s cold outside! You want to be warm, but you don’t like to spend a fortune on your energy bill each month. Is it possible to stay toasty, keep heating costs affordable, and be energy efficient all at the same time?

Take a look at these ideas for alternative heating systems and find a solution that’s good for your cold toes and the environment.

Solar Power

Solar power leads the pack in energy efficiency, and you have two options. Passive solar power uses the sun’s heat to warm your home. For most of us, this means opening the blinds and curtains when the sun streams through a window.If you’re building a new home, have it positioned to take advantage of the sun and use materials on the walls and floor to absorb and trap the heat. This is a part of an approach to building called passive design.

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The second option is active solar power, which is how many people think of social power systems that include solar panels, which are getting more and more affordable in residential settings. Connect solar panels to your roof and let the power of the sun generate heat and electricity for your entire home. Like a standard heating system, many solar energy systems are centrally controlled.

Geothermal heating

Using geothermal technology to heat and cool your home is energy efficient and will cut your utility costs over time. The system uses the natural heat in the ground, which maintains a constant temperature, to heat and cool your home.

While there is a higher up-front cost to install, you can expect to cut your energy bill by up to 35%. Plus, the pump could last up to 25 years with low maintenance costs.

geothermal energy pipes installation

Electric space heaters

Electric space heaters are probably the least expensive option that allows you to turn down or turn off your current system to heat a room or two. Consider this if you can’t spring for a brand-new heating system and if you spend most of your time in a certain portion of your home during the winter. Look for Energy Star rated heaters to find the most energy-efficient choice.

electric space heater white

Pellet stoves

Wood stoves may be more commonly known, but pellet stoves are more energy efficient. Instead of burning wood, you’ll burn pellets made of sawdust or switchgrass. The switchgrass is renewable, and the sawdust was once waste that’s been recycled into something useful. You can buy pellets by the ton, which costs less than buying wood for a stove.

pellets for pellet stove

(image: Alternative Heat)

The standard boiler, furnace, or heat pump doesn’t have to be your only heating option this winter. Choose an alternative heat system and become more energy efficient in the process. You’ll stay warm and help the environment at the same time.

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Sources:

http://www.cheaplikemeblog.com/saving/brr-low-cost-solutions-to-heat-your-home/

http://www.thegreenestdollar.com/2008/10/alternative-ways-to-heat-your-home/

http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2008/news/0808/gallery.home_heating/index.html

 

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.