When remodelling a part of the home, its easy to get caught up in trying to save time and money and sometimes going green isn't a primary concern (although it should be).
However, it doesn’t take much to make any part of your home more eco-friendly, and it can pay off in the long run in more ways than one. So, if you care about the environment and happen to have a bathroom that could use some remodelling, here are some ways in which you can make it more green.
Needless to say, bathrooms use a lot of water. Luckily, there are many ways to reduce that amount. First, change your bad habits – take shorter showers instead of long baths, and don’t let the water run while brushing your teeth or shaving. Second, if you’re looking for more mechanical solutions, you can install low-flow showerheads and faucets, as well as dual-flush toilets. Finally, make sure to fix any potential water leaks as soon as they happen.
You can also reduce the cost of heating the water by insulating your water heater. This can be done by simply putting a blanket over the heater or by insulating the whole bathroom. Another option that can lower your heating bills is reducing the temperature on the heater to around 55 °C.
Choose Water-Saving Fittings
As mentioned above, you should think about replacing your old toilet with a dual-flush one if you want to make your bathroom more green. You can also install a washing lid on top of the tank, which would allow you to first wash your hands and then use that same water for flushing your toilet.
Another great idea is installing a composting toilet – it uses little to no water and is much more eco-friendly. Next, besides installing low-flow faucets, you can go a step further and add a faucet aerator to the tip of your faucet, which can prevent splashing and help you conserve water. Moreover, if you’re thinking of replacing your cabinets as well, opt for durable natural materials such as bamboo and wood.
Use Green Materials
When it comes to the materials, there’s no reason your bathroom can’t be both green and stylish. For example, ceramic tiles and natural stone are low maintenance, durable, and they come in many colours and patterns.
You can also replace your vinyl flooring with natural linoleum, which is much more sustainable. Additionally, instead of using wallpapers on your walls, consider painting your bathroom – just make sure to look for low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) options. Finally, if you’re not willing to give up your bathtub for a shower, there are amazing high-quality stone baths that will take your bathroom décor to a whole new level.
Besides making your bathroom smell, bad ventilation can also cause different kinds of harmful mould and bacteria to appear. This is why you should ensure that your bathroom is properly ventilated, so it can stay dry and fresh. Open your windows if the weather is nice, and consider buying a fan with a timer switch or a humidity-sensing switch, so you don’t have to think about turning it off.
Think About the Light
Regardless of the size of your bathroom, your lighting choices can influence your energy bill. Therefore, try to let in as much natural light as you can during the day. Also, instead of using the regular light bulbs, opt for LED lights that use less energy, shine brighter, and emit less heat. They might be a bit more expensive initially, but they can make a big difference after only a year, so don’t hesitate to improve your lighting fittings.
If you want to do your part in preserving the environment, be smart when remodelling your bathroom. Don’t buy something just because it’s cheap or attractive – focus on the eco-friendly options. Make your bathroom green by saving water and energy, using LED lights, upgrading your fittings, and using green materials. This way, you will be able to truly enjoy your bathroom knowing that you did something good not just for your wallet but also for the whole planet.
Thanks to Catherine for contributing this guest post. We hope you enjoyed reading it! If you're inspired to start your bathroom re-model check out our range of bathroom products here.
|Catherine is a passionate home design consultant from Melbourne. She loves making homes beautiful and buildings sustainable, and she also likes sharing her advice and knowledge with people. She is a regular contributor to the Smoothdecorator blog. Besides all this, she loves reading and enjoys a superhero movie from time to time. Find her on Facebook and Twitter.|
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