Make your home more green friendly and save serious coin while you’re at it with our easy to follow tips from Katie Patrick, Director of Green Pages.

1. Seal the cracks
Cracks under doors and windows can allow significant cold draughts to enter the home. Using a simple and inexpensive seal under the side of any door or window will stop unwanted draughts from sucking away the heat in your home and reduce your electricity bills.

2. Throw out the “blower” heater and opt for hydronic heaters
Little “blower” heaters chew energy like there’s no climate friendly tomorrow! Opting for a heating device which relies on conductive heat allows heat to disperse around the room. The best option is a wall mounted conductive heater or hydronic heating which is laid permanently in the floor.

3. Look for the Rainforest Alliance Certified™ seal
Choose certified food and beverage products such as Lipton Quality Black Tea sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified™ farms. Every cup of Lipton Quality Black carrying the Rainforest Alliance green frog seal is a sip towards a better life for tea farmers, their families and the environment.

4. Go native in the garden
Australia is home to some of the most exotic and interesting plant species in the world. Try planting Australian native grass, waratahs, banksia, kangaroo paw, wattles, reeds, native orchids and succulents. These use minimal water and can provide habitats for local birds and beetles.

5. Power your shower
The best showers are short and sweet. An average 10 minute shower using an old shower head will use 250 litres of water, whilst a four minute power shower with an innovative AAA rated shower head will use only 36 litres. That’s an 85 per cent water saving.

6. Reach for the stars
Look for a good energy star rating (over four stars is best), when purchasing appliances such as fridges, washing machines and dishwashers. The star rating can help you to make an informed decision about which product will use the least energy.

7. Go fluoro
Most of the electricity used by normal light bulbs actually heats up the light bulb rather than provide light. Installing a compact fluorescent light bulb is 90 per cent more efficient than normal bulbs and lasts for up to five years.

8. Water the garden in the evening
Water stored in the soil is evaporated throughout the day. To avoid this evaporation, water the garden only in the evenings so the water has the opportunity to percolate through the soil and be absorbed by the roots of the plants.

9. Refuse plastic bags
Remember to take a re-usable bag when you shop and say no to plastic bags. Australians still use around five billion plastic bags at supermarkets every year. This contributes to landfill and can be harmful to birds and sea life.

10. Slow the water flow
Installing low flow tap fittings will cut down water flow in household taps by 50 per cent. They are easy to install and cost less than $5 each.

For more ideas on acting sustainably in the home visit www.thegreenpages.com.au

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