energy efficiency outdoors

5 Ways to Reduce Energy Use Outdoors

Savings from the Outside, In.

When most people focus on ways to reduce their energy use, they typically focus on things they can do inside their home. It makes sense, of course, as there are numerous opportunities to improve the energy efficiency of day-to-day life indoors. But there are also ways to reduce energy use outside the home, and you can find handy suggestions below. Some will affect the energy used outdoors, others the energy used indoors. All of them will have a positive impact on the energy efficiency of the total home.

1. Plant a Shade Tree

Planting a shade tree can dramatically improve the temperature control in a home. By blocking the sunlight from entering via the windows, shade trees make the property more energy efficient and reduce the energy needed to cool the home.

2. Use Hand Tools

Replacing the energy use required to operate power tools with the effort necessary for hand tools makes the home more energy efficient. Homeowners who replace weed whackers with clippers, leaf blowers with rakes, and riding lawnmowers with push mowers will find it makes for good exercise as well.

3. Seek Alternative Modes of Transportation

Instead of burning fuel to make short drives for the sake of "convenience," try walking or riding a bicycle as an alternative mode of transportation that is better for the user and the environment.

4. Compost for Garden Use

Creating and using a compost pile provides a positive, rich fertilizer for use in the garden. It also saves the homeowner the energy of running this material through the garbage disposal, and it is more environmentally friendly than many other fertilizer options.

5. Research Lighting Options

Many homeowners leave their yard lights on all evening, wasting energy. Opt instead for some of the numerous energy-saving alternatives available. Solar yard lights trap the sun's power during the day and release this power at night in an energy-friendly way. Motion-sensor lights turn on only when triggered by movement, and homeowners can always replace the existing bulbs with Energy Star bulbs for an efficient way to reduce energy use.

Energy-saving options exist outside the home just as they do indoors, and while making the most of these options requires extra effort from the homeowners themselves, the considerable benefits are there for the taking.

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