Were you aware that going green can improve your financial position and give the planet a helping hand? Switching to eco-friendly ways to run daily errands and save cash is not a myth, indeed. Being green is about thinking economically, simplifying usual activities, and living a hands-on sustainable life.
Becoming environmentally aware doesn’t always involve hybrid cars and organic food. There are numerous straightforward and frugal strategies to reduce your monthly spending and the overall waste output. All you have to do is utilize our ideas below and see how money gets back to your wallet.
Table of Contents
- 1 Install Low-Flow Shower Heads
- 2 Install Faucet Aerators
- 3 Install Low-Flow Toilets
- 4 Add A Brick To Your Toilet Tank
- 5 Repair Water Leaks
- 6 Take Shorter Showers
- 7 Rack Dry Your Clothes
- 8 Do Full Loads Of Laundry
- 9 Use Cold Water When Washing Your Clothes
- 10 Insulate Your Water Heater And Pipes
- 11 Use Reusable Water Bottles
- 12 Replace Light Bulbs With LED Lights
- 13 Install A Programmable Thermostat
- 14 Weather-Strip Your Doors And Windows
- 15 Run Your Dishwasher When Full
- 16 Attach All Electronics To Power Strips
- 17 Use Cloth Napkins
- 18 Repurpose The Water Used To Wash Produce
- 19 Use A Pressure Cooker
- 20 Cook From Scratch
- 21 Plant An Organic Garden
- 22 Make A Compost Pile
- 23 Use A Rain Barrel To Collect Rainwater
- 24 Install Solar Lights In Your Yard
- 25 Avoid Idling Your Car
- 26 Make Sure Your Tires Are Filled
- 27 Rotate Your Car Tires Regularly
- 28 Carpool
- 29 Use Your Bike Or Public Transport To Commute
- 30 Cover Your Pool
- 31 Choose Your Microwave Versus Your Oven
- 32 Use A Toaster Oven
- 33 Reduce Your Book-Print
- 34 Make Your Cleaning Supplies
- 35 Shop Second Hand
- 36 Go Paperless
- 37 Host A Garage Or Yard Sale
- 38 Buy Energy-Efficient Appliances
- 39 Make Money Recycling
- 40 Try To Borrow Instead Of Buying
- 41 Final Thoughts
- 43 FAQs
Install Low-Flow Shower Heads
The first green thing for your home you must undertake is to install a low-flow showerhead. By doing so, you’ll use between 25 and 60% less water while showering. In short, installing any low-flow adjuster in the house means substantial savings.
Showerheads are adjustable and have several settings. Depending on the bathing phase, you can alter from low to high flow when rinsing. What is more important you can find this equipment for about $5 in any bathroom gear store.
Plus, this can help you avoid needing help to pay your water bills as it will cut down your spending.
Install Faucet Aerators
Apart from being inexpensive, sink water aerators are also easy to install. By its operation, aerators control the quantity of water that flows out of faucets. Their positive influence on your wallet is that they reduce the water flow in sinks. This way, you save valuable water resources and money, too. Also, when you’re using hot water, the faucet needs less heating.
Install Low-Flow Toilets
When you have enough funds, invest money in a low-flow, dual-flush model. These toilets, regardless of whether they are gravity or pressure-assisted, save water by the flush and over time. Anyways, the pressure might be weak compared to the standard options.
In general, the upgrade will yield you savings in the amount of up to $100 on water bills per year. So, apart from setting money aside by decreasing the amount of water in the toilet, you also preserve water globally.
Add A Brick To Your Toilet Tank
In case you don’t want to invest money in a new toilet tank, consider making it low-flow by inserting a heavy object. Meaning, you can place a brick, a stone, or a plastic bottle filled with sand into the tank. Make sure you wrap items in a waterproof plastic bag.
As a result of this simple operation, part of the water in the tank will get displaced, and you’ll waste less water. You can preserve up to half of the water you’re using with a regular flush.
Repair Water Leaks
When inspecting your home for faulty fixtures and pipes, consider the following types of most frequent leaks:
- Dripping Faucets. Avoid wasting 140 gallons a week by repairing that agonizing dripping. Fixing leaks on time will help you avoid further, hefty repairs. Just find a DIY tutorial and mend any dripping faucet in no time.
- Leaking Valves. Stop money going down the drain by fixing all valves in due time. Inspect them regularly and check for early signs of excessive moisture around the house.
- Damaged Toilet Flappers. Test your flapper by dropping food color in the toilet. Flappers are easy to change and require no prior experience.
- Pipe Leaks. If you hear a constant noise, your toilet or pipes might be leaky. Meaning, you’re wasting a lot of water, and you’re not aware of it. Make sure no pipe is out of order.
Take Shorter Showers
No doubt everyone enjoys a nice hot shower for half an hour under the reviving water. In reality, everything we need is a 5-minute shower. Plus, there is no need to shower every day, and it’s not even healthy to wash off natural body oils.
Also, it’s unnecessary to leave the water on when you apply soap or shampoo. It’s best to switch the water off and only keep it on when you’re actively using it. Practicing these tips for a month or two will reflect favorably on your next water bills.
Rack Dry Your Clothes
Do you put any washed clothes in the tumble dryer by default? Did you know this habit is detrimental both for the environment and for your pocket?
What you can do for a change is buy a clothing line or rack, and use some hangers to dry your clothes. Be aware of hanging wet laundry around the house since this has an overall harmful effect on people with pulmonary diseases.
Do Full Loads Of Laundry
Whether you’re washing colored or white clothes, wait until the laundry gets full or at least, almost fully loaded. This way, you economize both with the amount of water and energy. Fewer detergents and waste affect the environment in a positive way, as well.
Also, when buying a washing machine, remember that front-loading machines need less water and energy. Conversely, their top-loading counterparts are less efficient and use a lot of energy for heating, too.
Use Cold Water When Washing Your Clothes
Doing the laundry at high temperatures leads to using more energy and increases the electricity bill. Get accustomed to washing your clothes at 30 degrees since this also saves the environment. Some estimates advocate that running cold washing cycles can save you up to $60 per year, and frequently even more. Meaning, this step is one of the best ways to lower your electric bill.
If you’re concerned whether hard-core stains will come off, worry not. New generation detergents can handle any greasy stain. Even better, there are eco-friendly brands that advise customers to wash on a colder cycle to both save money and the surroundings.
Insulate Your Water Heater And Pipes
The principle behind insulating your pipes is that you’ll need less energy for the heating system. Plus, if you install blankets over the water heater, the intensity of work will decrease, and the result is lower electricity bills.
Another great hack is to turn the water heater down. Who needs hot water that exceeds 140 degrees Fahrenheit? You can adjust the setting to 120 degrees and save 10 % in water heating costs.
Use Reusable Water Bottles
Do you still use plastic bottles and spend excessive amounts of money on bottled water? It’s high time to ditch this habit as not only packaged water is ridiculously expensive, but also non-essential. Tap water is still drinkable, and you can always buy a water filter or distiller to make sure it’s safe. Giving up bottled water will save you at least $90 a month, considering you purchase a $3 bottle every day.
Find a BPA-free reusable bottle and use it always when you’re out. You wouldn’t pollute the environment by throwing at least two plastic bottles a day, would you? Even if you believe those will get recycled, most plastic ends up in landfills, and sometimes in the oceans.
Replace Light Bulbs With LED Lights
Amazingly but LED bulbs require about 80% less energy than their incandescent counterparts. Nowadays, energy-saving lamps are more glamorous than before and produce a decent level of light. Further on, LED light bulbs are incredibly efficient, and one such bulb can replace 21 incandescent bulbs to reach the same working hours.
Above all, the prices of both types of light bulbs are roughly the same. LED ones cost about $5 each. Throughout the years, energy-saving light bulbs will save you a lot of money. For instance, within the lifetime of one LED bulb (25,000 hours), you can save approximately $165. Unbelievable, right?
Install A Programmable Thermostat
A thermostat is a little yet so powerful device that takes care of energy bills over and over again. Programmable thermostats let you set your AC or heating to turn on whenever you find it appropriate. Adjust it to switch the AC on before you come home or to switch it off when you go to bed. Smart thermostats will reduce your energy bills between 10 and 30% depending on the space and your time at home.
Weather-Strip Your Doors And Windows
In case you haven’t weather-stripped your windows and doors until now, it’s high time to put it on your list of priorities. Or replace outdated fixtures that don’t prevent the cold or hot air from getting in. Efficient weather-strips also retain the heat inside during the winter and the cold air in the summer. By doing so, you’ll save up to 20% on energy bills each month.
Run Your Dishwasher When Full
Activating a half-full dishwasher wastes your money, energy, and water resources. Therefore, make sure it’s always full before you switch it on. Also, arrange the dirty dishes and glasses in a way that the washer can accommodate more items.
An even better saving option is the ‘delay’ feature. Meaning, you can set the dishwasher to start once off-peak energy hours are on. Bear in mind that turning on electrical appliances in the off-peak hours helps the planet and your finances.
Attach All Electronics To Power Strips
If you thought electronic equipment doesn’t consume power when in the off position, you were utterly wrong. Even WiFi routers and computers draw electricity overnight. The smartest hack to put in practice is to put all devices on one power strip. At night or when you’re away, switch them off entirely by just one unplug. This habit can save you between $100 and $200 a year.
Use Cloth Napkins
Would you like your dinner table to look fancy? Try cloth napkins which apart from being more durable, help you save in the long term. This way, you have an extra decorative element and decrease the amount of trash. Consider giving up paper towels, and sometimes wet wipes, for cloth ones.
Undoubtedly, recyclable paper is beneficial for the environment, but isn’t it better not to use it in the first place? We suggest you go with the less absorbent napkins that don’t wrinkle easily to exploit the full potential of reusable cloth.
Repurpose The Water Used To Wash Produce
Washing products is a must, but there’s no need to throw that water. After having fresh produce washed in a large bowl, use the runoff to water your potted plants. You can even use the residue aqua for your lawn.
Pay attention that salted water is not beneficial for plants. So, when you boil pasta and want to use that water for other purposes, make sure it’s saltless. By doing so, you reduce your carbon imprint on the planet.
Use A Pressure Cooker
Once you start using a pressure cooker, we bet you’ll fall in love with it. It’s an exceptional appliance that saves time, energy, and money while doing the usual cooking. Imagine using 70% less time and energy on roasting a whole chicken. Sounds incredible, right?
Above all, pressure cookers prepare food ten times faster, and you can use it for soups, risottos, hot pots, and even desserts. The thing that you cook in one container means you’ll need less electricity and consequently save cash by making your life easier.
Cook From Scratch
You’re well aware that domestic cooking saves cash and your health, too. However, keep in mind that home-made also requires fewer resources than eating at restaurants, ordering takeaway, or pre-made food. The entire food processing and preparing industry eats up a lot of energy.
Moreover, no meal is more delicious and appreciated than a home-made one. After all, you know what products you use and how you cook. Industrial kitchens, plastic wrappings, and cardboard packaging aren’t’ so appealing, are they?
Let’s not forget that when comparing home-cooked food vs. junk food, the first always wins. Not only because it’s more economic but also healthier too.
Plant An Organic Garden
Opting for a vegetable garden is a real cash saver, indeed. A little planting, caretaking, and watering can yield outstanding proceeds that are both healthy and economical. An average 4-foot by 8-foot garden can save you up to $600 on food over a year.
In case you’re not familiar with gardening, consult an experienced friend or relative. Start by planting easy to maintain vegetables such as onions, lettuce, and tomatoes.
Make A Compost Pile
Why leave food scraps to rot in the dump when you can use them to your benefit? More importantly, you’ll prevent the greenhouse gas coming off into the atmosphere. Thus, think about starting a compost heap to avoid buying fertilizers and maintain soil health.
Compost piles are exceptionally useful for growing new plants and food. Any organic waste decomposes much faster in a compost heap than in a landfill. An ultimate recycler, you’d say!
Use A Rain Barrel To Collect Rainwater
Collecting rainwater is an excellent idea that will cost you nothing. You can even install several rain barrels to serve a decorative purpose if your yard is large. Any collected water can get used for watering outdoor plants. If you live in a wet area that gets frequent rainfalls, you’ll save thousands of gallons per year.
Invest in an upgraded version of barrels such as the rainwater harvesting systems for even more significant savings. If you have efficient filtration and storage, these systems can provide water for washing machines and car washing, too. In total, one household can decrease the water bill by 40% or 50%.
Install Solar Lights In Your Yard
Lighting your yard using electricity is unnecessary since the era of solar energy is here. The first thing you have to undertake is to purchase several solar path lights. They’ll get charged during the day and then emit light overnight. For extra security, consider a motion detection light powered by solar energy.
Moreover, go a step further and install panels to lower electricity bills. If you live in a sunny region, expect to waive about $1,100 of expenditures per year.
Avoid Idling Your Car
Car idling is your worst enemy as it consumes a lot of gas. Unless you’re forced to do so in heavy traffic, get used to switching off the engine whenever possible. It’s more advisable to turn the engine off and then on rather than leave it idling for more than 30 seconds. Even worse, vehicles that idle increase the level of smog that affects asthma conditions and leads to hot summers.
Avoiding idling is one of the top gas saving tips, as well.
Make Sure Your Tires Are Filled
You may wonder how inflating your tires can influence your pocket, but there is a sound reason for this. Tires inflated to the correct PSI improve gas mileage by up to 3%, and thus, the vehicle consumes less gas. Consequently, you’ll spend less money on gas and cause less pollution in the air. Keeping the PSI between 30 and 35 improves safety and tires last longer, too.
Rotate Your Car Tires Regularly
Regular rotation of car tires ensures they wear evenly and extends their lifespan. As a result, you save money on new sets of tires and fuel. Having the right pneumatics installed increases the number of miles you drive per gallon as resistance is at the right level. Scheduled rotation saves as much as 10% in fuel economy.
Save your funds by joining a car-sharing scheme when commuting. The ride-sharing system can involve a friend, a colleague or a relative, and car-sharing apps aren’t excluded either. If you share car rides with at least one person, you get a 50% discount and cause 50% less air pollution. Lastly, it’s easier to arrive on time and socialize.
Use Your Bike Or Public Transport To Commute
If your working office is in the vicinity, why don’t you cycle to work? Or even better, walk when the weather allows it. Not only will you keep fit and do some physical exercise, but you’ll also save the environment. Vehicles produce a lot of carbon dioxide, and by using eco-friendly alternatives, you’re helping humanity.
Apart from not producing excessive harmful emissions, you save on transport costs if you commute by train or bus. Biking and walking incur no fees and almost no maintenance compared to cars. You aren’t liable for tax as well, or it can be negligible when using a bike as a means of transport.
Cover Your Pool
A pool cover is the best investment you can make for your family enjoyment spot. One benefit is that you’re going to prevent pool water from evaporating. This way, refilling will come at less frequent intervals.
Second, the water will stay cleaner for a longer time. By doing so, you’ll use less chemicals to treat the water. Also, you reduce the need to run pumps and filters. All these aspects guarantee that you’ll use less water and energy and set money aside.
Choose Your Microwave Versus Your Oven
The absolute winner when it comes to saving cash on heating and reheating is the microwave. It uses less energy than both toasters and conventional ovens. Microwaves cook faster and can save you hundreds of dollars per year, depending on how often you cook.
When it comes to saving the planet, microwaves produce less indoor air pollution and don’t heat your home. Don’t get surprised by the variety of meals that can get prepared in a microwave, too.
Use A Toaster Oven
In reality, toaster ovens are way more efficient than conventional ones. Smaller alternatives of power-mad ovens tend to be cheaper, quicker, and environmentally friendlier for sure. Expect to save half of the amount spent on electricity with traditional ovens because toasters consume up to 1/3 less.
This hack is most useful when cooking smaller and medium-sized meals. Plus, it can reheat leftovers much faster and gentler.
Reduce Your Book-Print
Do you adore the smell of an old book and feel like you can go on reading forever? Particularly on a rainy day under a warm blanket. Well, who doesn’t? However, give the habit of buying new books a second thought. The production of paper for books threatens the life of trees, and you have so many other options to find exceptional books.
Have you thought about buying second-hand books or borrowing from friends and relatives? Visiting your local library is yet another super idea for book lovers. Finally, consider switching to e-books and apps like Kindle.
Make Your Cleaning Supplies
Most cleaning solutions available on the market are incredibly harmful to your home and the environment. They contain potent chemicals that can kill almost any bacteria around. Besides this, the toxic substances in cleaning products harm the surroundings once released via pipes and sewer systems.
As a result, it’s much wiser and eco-friendly to make cleaning products on your own. The net is full of such recipes that effectively eliminate bacteria present at most prone places. The secret ingredients are baking soda, vinegar, and lemon juice.
Shop Second Hand
Today, almost anything gets sold second-hand. From furniture and electronics to clothes, you can find items in a nearly perfect condition. Buying second-hand helps you economize, and also saves one piece from being dumped at a landfill. You also reduce your consumer footprint on the environment since fewer resources are needed to manufacture new products.
Have you thought about going ultimately paperless? Ditching paper is a must if you want to avoid losing documents and bills. It’s also advisable since billers give discounts for doing things electronically. Apart from not touching on your wallet, going paperless saves many trees and thus combats climate change.
Host A Garage Or Yard Sale
Be a host or co-host regular yard sales with your neighbors. A greater-scale garage sale will undoubtedly attract more customers. Not only will you get rid of old stuff and declutter your home, but you can also earn easy money fast. Most importantly, you preserve the planet since no energy gets wasted for producing new goods.
Buy Energy-Efficient Appliances
Your best shot is to purchase Energy Star Appliances which are eco-friendly and save cash on utility bills. Though they cost a bit more upfront, such appliances are more durable and higher-quality. Energy-efficient devices use 50% less energy and water so you can save $100 per year by replacing one outdated machine only.
Make Money Recycling
Is there a recycling center in the vicinity? Then, why don’t you make some cash by becoming green? Today, you can collect and recycle almost anything starting from cans and plastic bottles, to glass. For instance, in some states, you can earn $100 by recycling 1,000 cans.
Also, try selling old gadgets, electronics, computers, and mobiles for a little pot of money. If this fails, try donating some of your functional but unused stuff. Throwing them away won’t bring you anything beneficial, and it will increase the number of landfills.
Try To Borrow Instead Of Buying
Do you need a new dress? Rent it out for just a fraction of the real cost. Are you fond of books? Then, why don’t you borrow them from the nearest library or a friend instead of buying? Do your kids need new toys? Borrow some from your closest relatives or even better, switch some of the toys you don’t need.
There are many things that we only use once in a lifetime or for short periods. So, what’s the point of splashing out a fortune on something so unessential? Get organized and have a borrowing plan that makes you environmentally friendly and financially savvy.
Knowing that this extensive guide on how to save cash while saving the planet raised your awareness brings us great satisfaction. Whether you opt to focus on reducing your energy or water bill, it’s up to you. Step by step, saving natural resources and money will come naturally to you and won’t require additional effort.
Remember to subscribe to our ProMoneySavings Newsletter if you haven’t already. Also, please share any tips and ideas we may have missed in our guide in the comment area.
How can going green save you money?
Opting for the ecological way of living saves you both money and the environment. First, begin with switching to eco-friendly lighting and furniture. Explore ways in which you can preserve water and stick with energy-efficient appliances. Also, use cloth whenever you can replace paper and strive to live without paper. Finally, try to cut non-organic food waste and encourage your family to eat healthily.
What are the benefits of going green?
First, you have economic benefits such as lower monthly bills and running costs. Using renewable energy further reduces electricity bills. If you go green, you ditch the dependency on fossil fuels and other depleting resources. Let alone the difference you make with preserving the environment and keeping the air around you clean. Finally, making use of incentives for green living granted by individual states has health benefits, as well.
Is it expensive to go green?
Building an eco-friendly home from scratch will undoubtedly cost you a fortune. Even the prices of posh green methods and products are exorbitant. Yet, if you go with small changes such as fully loaded dishwashers and washing machines, it won’t cost you anything. Continue by car-sharing or biking to work. Finally, you won’t spend a dollar if you borrow stuff instead of immediately rushing to the stores.
What can you use less of to save money?
Honestly, there are plenty of things you can do right away to start setting money aside. Begin with eliminating canned food and not buying more groceries than you usually need. Avoid purchasing coffee on your way to work and make sure you prepare lunch at home. Forget about bottled water and switch to reusable bottles and lunch boxes. Turn down your heating and the water heater a few degrees and install LED lamps to cut down on electricity usage.