Save Water_part 3

May 27th, 2011 - 

Saving devices 

For part one see here.
For part two see here.

 – A rainwater tank prevents precious rainwater coming off your roof and ending up as storm water run-off. Tanks supply water for outdoor use, flushing toilets and washing clothes and reduce flash flooding in our creeks.  
– A grey water system using water from your bathroom and/or laundry (not toilet or kitchen) is a good alternative source of water for your garden. Water can be piped through a flexible hose or bucketed to any part of your garden and does not require Council approval. If you plan to install a grey water diversion system, that requires connection to household plumbing you will need to apply for Council approval.
– A pool blanket reduces pool and spa water loss to evaporation, minimises chemical use, prevents debris entering your pool and increases the water temperature by up to 8°C. It can save up to 100 liters of water per day. As it simply floats on your pool surface, it’s easy to install. 
A water sense lifestyle can achieve water savings in your home. Look for products with a high Water Efficiency Labeling Standard (WELS) star rating. Install water-saving devices such as flow restrictors, dual flush toilets, water-efficient washing machines, dishwashers, shower heads and taps. 
Reuse water from your house on your garden by placing a basin in your kitchen sink to catch water when rinsing fruits and vegetables and by using a bucket in the shower to catch the water while you’re waiting for it to warm up.

Tips for Conserving Energy_ part 3

May 27th, 2011 - 
8. Invest in a programmable thermostat. According to the EnergyStar website, you can save as much as $180 per year on your energy bills, so these things pay for themselves pretty fast. By setting your heat at a lower temperature while you’re away or sleeping, you’ll see big energy savings without sacrificing comfort.  
9. Cover your floors. If you have tile or hardwood floors, you can keep things cozy by laying out an area rug, especially if you have a basement or crawlspace.

10. Don’t turn off those ceiling fans – reverse them! I know, it sounds crazy. Why would you run your ceiling fan when it’s cold outside? Your fan is actually a great way to keep warm air circulating in your home. Most come equipped
with a switch to reverse the direction that the blades turn. By flipping the switch and setting it on low, you can use your fan to push warm air that’s trapped up at the ceiling down to the living area. If you want to go a step further, try contacting your local utility company for an energy audit. The EnergyStar website also has some great tools for assessing your home’s energy efficiency!

Tips for Conserving Energy_ part 2

May 27th, 2011 - 
4. Seal around your windows and doors. Check around window and door frames for cracks or leaks where cold air could be seeping in. You can seal these up with caulk. For larger gaps, check out your local hardware store for sealing solutions. 

5. Be a draft dodger. Warm air can escape under exterior doors. Seal up these areas by keeping a rolled up towel pressed against the bottom of the door, dorm-room style. If you want to get fancy, WikiHow has a great tutorial on making your own!

6. Turn down your hot water heater. Make sure it’s set to “normal” or 120 degrees. Any hotter is just a waste of energy.

7. Practice a little feng shui. Set up your rooms so that places where you sit and sleep are not near big windows or
exterior walls, wherever possible. If your sofa, bed, or desk has to be near exterior walls or a big window, you might add a little warmth and flair with some heavy curtains over that window or a cheery wall-hanging.

Consume less fuel while driving_ part 2

May 27th, 2011 - 
Avoid heavy breaking and apply the pedal lightly, you are wasting fuel by breaking heavily and accelerating quickly, you can save up to 30% of fuel cost if you improve your driving in this area.
If you are stuck in a traffic jam for more than a few minutes switch of your engine if it is save or possible to do so. Restarting your engine uses less fuel than keeping it running.
There is no point switching on your air conditioner if you don’t really need it. Switch it off and open all the windows and all the air ventilation in your car. Switching off your air conditioner can help decrease your gas consumption considerably. Serviced your car regularly and don’t forget to check your tyre pressure at regular interval, and before any long journey. Incorrect tire pressure can have impact on fuel consumption adding up to 30% to your fuel bill.
Your mechanic should also check your vehicle emission and catalytic converter;
70% of badly polluting vehicles could be returned at a garage within some few minutes.
Upgrade your car to a new one, the older your motor car gets the less inefficient it can become, and the less millage you will get from a full tank of gasoline. If you have an older motor vehicle you can save your fuel by updating to a newer fuel efficient vehicle. If you buy a new motor car remember to check out the car fuel economy figure before you buy. Keeping your car washed and waxed improves aerodynamics and therefore affects fuel economy.

Save Water_part 2

May 27th, 2011 - 

In the garden 

For part one see here.
For part three see here.

– Maintain healthy soil. Soils in good condition absorb water best.  
– Natural shade trees in the right position can reduce plant water use and offer opportunities for planting shade-loving native shrubs and ground covers.  
– Mulch beds and pots. This reduces water lost to evaporation by up to 70%.  
– Group plants with similar watering needs together.

 – Water deeply but less often to encourage strong root systems and hardier plants.

– Add organic wetting agents (available from garden centers) to help keep water and nutrients in the soil.

– Water early or late in the day (in accordance with current water restrictions) to reduce evaporation and don’t water when it’s windy or rainy.  
– If using grey water, choose biodegradable products with low levels of phosphorus, sodium, nitrogen and chlorine.