When you think of going green, what comes to mind? Most of us think of ideas like turning off electronics when they aren’t in use, recycling, or lowering water consumption. However, few people realize that it is possible to be more “green” when you are heating your home!
Advances in efficiency in the fireplace industry – as well as a better understanding of how to conserve energy and avoid polluting – has made it more possible than ever to keep your home warm and welcoming without hurting the environment. The following four tips can help you heat your home in an environmentally conscious way.
1. Purchase a new high efficiency heating appliance
In recent years, fireplaces, inserts, and stoves have become more efficient than ever; many new appliances can provide the same amount of heat while maximizing the amount of fuel that is burned and minimizing the amount of air pollution created. Because of this, if you have a heating appliance that is more than a few years old, you may want to investigate purchasing a new, high efficiency model.
Buying a high efficiency stove may also be able to help you on your taxes. Homeowners who purchase a qualifying high efficiency wood stove can receive up to a $300 tax credit as well as enjoy the benefits of a new, more efficient heat source in their home.
2. Burn a renewable fuel source
While propane and gas create extremely efficient heat, they are also non-renewable fuel sources. Instead, consider switching to a heating appliance that burns a biomass fuel, or a fuel source that is derived from a renewable and sustainable source. Examples of renewable biomass fuels include wood, corn, and pellets; pellets are often considered the most “green” fuel source because they are made from small pieces of wood and sawdust that would normally be discarded.
3. Burn wood wisely
If you have a wood burning heating appliance, the firewood you choose and how you burn it can have an impact on your fireplace’s environmental impact. To reduce air pollutants burn only seasoned firewood; green or freshly cut wood can create significantly more smoke – and affect the air quality more – than seasoned wood. Likewise, avoid burning plastics, Styrofoam, paper products, or other trash in your fireplace or stove. While it may seem like an easy way to get rid of garbage, even burning small amounts can release toxic chemicals into the air – as well as cause damage to your fireplace, stove, or chimney.
4. Zone heat your home
Most people use less than 40% of their homes on a daily basis; if you are turning up your thermostat to heat the whole house, you may be spending too much for heating! Instead of heating rooms that no one is in, consider using a fireplace or stove for zone heating. Zone heating allows you to turn down your central thermostat for the entire home while the fireplace heats the rooms that are being used. Zone heating can help reduce energy bills by as much as 20-40%!
By being more environmentally conscious in how we heat our homes, we can reduce pollution and improve air quality – as well as save money! Contact The Cozy Flame today to learn more about our EPA certified high efficiency heating appliances as well as other ways you can “go green” with your fireplace or stove.