Tuesday, March 07, 2006

More Tips to Conserve Water and Fuel

How are you doing in the water conservation department? On top of it? Great! Here are some more tips….

TO Do This Week

Other Water Conservation Tips


My co-worker Linette Moreno reminded me about washing in cold water rather than hot. Ninety percent of the energy used in the washer is for heating. I use warm water to wash whites and cold for everything else. Another tip is to wash only when you have full loads, or adjust the water level according to the load you have.

If you are looking to buy a washing machine, please consider a front-load washer. They don’t need as much water as top load machines, they hold larger loads and reduce water heating.

Now that we’re on about washing clothes and that spring is around the corner (well sooner for some than others), I encourage you, if you are able, to hang your clothes out to dry. Another fine way to cut down on your heating bill and GHG emissions!

Speaking of spring…. those of you who have a garden or planters probably know to water early in the morning or in the evening and not mid day when the water easily evaporates.

Another gardening tip according to the Armchair Environmentalist is to:

• “Use soaker hoses – which are porous or full of tiny holes – rather than sprinklers.

• Less frequent but deep watering encourages plants to grow deep roots.

• Save rainwater in a barrel or wash tub and use it to water the garden – or wash the car. Cover to keep debris out of it and also prevent mosquitoes from breeding in it.”

For other water/heat saving tips, please visit Earth Easy’s 25 ways to save water at home

Driving Habits
There are a number of things you can do to improve your car’s fuel efficiency.

• Keep your tires properly inflated. According to Earth Easy, “under-inflated tires can cause fuel consumption to increase by as much as 6%. Operating a vehicle with just one tire under-inflated by 40 kPa can reduce the life of the tire by 10,000 km and increase the vehicle's fuel consumption by three per cent.”

• Avoid fast starts and sharp breaking. If you have a tendency to do this, you can increase your fuel consumption by 40%, not to mention tick off your passengers. For those of you in a hurry in downtown traffic, forget it. This activity increases your time only by about 4%. Hardly worth the wasted fuel and increase in toxic emissions, not to mention high blood-pressure.

• Service your car regularly, otherwise, you can be using up to 50% more fuel and produce up to 50% more emissions.

• If you have accessories in your vehicle like a DVD player, turn them off before you turn off the engine. You want to reduce the load you put on the engine when it powers up. Extra load=extra fuel

• Speaking of load, you may want to rethink using your car as a storage facility. An extra 100lbs of weight can increase your fuel bill by 2%. Resist rolling down your windows all the way when driving to reduce drag

For more tips, visit Earth Easy.

Next week – The most fuel efficient mode of transportation EVER, a little chat about Reduce/Reuse, and the omnipresence of plastic.

No comments: