How to Plan an Energy-Efficient Kitchen Remodel
So, you’ve decided to do an energy-efficient remodel of your kitchen. That’s great! Whether you are doing it for environmental reasons or want to cut down on that monthly bill, you’ve undertaken a worthwhile (if daunting) task. This guide will help you take baby-steps towards a new energy-efficient kitchen.
Step 1: Identify the culprits (up, down, and around).
Energy wasters are everywhere — and it is your task to find them. Examine your light fixtures and note if you are using energy-efficient light bulbs or not. Take note of your dishwasher and range oven. Most large appliances will have a yellow ‘EnergyGuide’ label on them (look up the make and model online if you don’t find it).
This guide certifies the expected energy required to run the device and serves as a handy comparison tool. If there is no yellow card, that’s a red flag! Lastly, look at the appliances on your counter. Do you really need a toaster, oven, and toaster oven? Be honest with yourself and be brutal — eliminate redundancies.
Step 2: Don’t forget about the water!
Take note of your sink. A poorly designed or fitted sink can be a huge energy sink (get it?). Starting today, get to know your WaterSense label. A faucet with this designation has been certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for superior efficiency and performance. This means you won’t just get an energy-conscious product, you’ll also get one that works while using up to 60% less water than a lesser brand. That’s too good to pass up!
Step 3: Commit. Don’t back down now.
The first thing that you might notice when shopping for energy efficient brands is that the price tag may be a bit steeper than you’d like. Remember that the appliances you have identified are certified for quality and efficiency — and you are doing this for a reason. While the cost may be steep up front, it might sting a bit less because of step 4.
Step 4: Profit.
A typical American family of four will spend around $2,000 dollars a year on energy for their home. By making the switch to energy efficient appliances, you will save, on average, a whopping 30% on that bill — every year!
Congrats! You now have good karma and you’ve saved enough money to start tackling your next energy-saving endeavor. Pick another room and get started.