Like the “GREEN” posts?

If you are enjoying the little “Green” tidbits we have been blogging, check out our new site and blog at www.ourgreenlifebiz.com. There is also a  link in the top/right column.

We decided everyone needs to “Go Green” to some extent to improve our world.  We are not fanatics about, just doing what fits how we live.  We are doing simple things like florescent lights vice incandescent bulbs (replacing them as they burn out), keeping the appropriate air in our vehicles tires, etc.  

I intend to write an entire blof about this on our “Green” site just to let people know how easy it is to help the environment all over the world.

Jay 

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Our Green Technologies – Week 8

My wife Lynne and I have done a lot of research into green technologies the directly affect our lives and of course the pocket book.  We started very simply by changing out our light bulbs around the house with fluorescent bulbs.  The cost is very much close to the same as incandescent bulbs so as they burnt out we replaced them with the new technology.  I have not done the math to determine the cost effectiveness yet but it is probably worth the effort.  Take out a 60 watt bulb and replace it with a 12 watt bulb times thirty bulbs….you get the picture.  So without changing our lifestyle at all, we save money and use much less electricity.

As I was getting ready to retire we started looking for property and/or out retirement home.  So we started investigating the green technologies for ways to better our investments in the long term.  We are in the process of purchasing a log home that is better insulated than 90% of homes in America and has geothermal assisted heating and cooling.  So we lower the cost to heat and cool and we have a lower carbon footprint.  Now we haven’t even moved in yet but we are way ahead of the game.  The home is all electric so we plan on installing an alternate heat source of an LP Fireplace.  We also intend on looking into solar power at least to augment what we have coming in over the electricitygrid.  The home is situated in the trees, but we do have areas that the sun gets through.  We would like to utilize wind power also, but so far only one type of turbine may fit the bill.  This is a vertical “squirrel cage” type fan mounted on a pole from Mariah Power.  It sort of looks like a skiny tree.  As a matter of fact you could line your driveway with them….I mean I wouldn’t but you could.

In any case I believe Lynne and I found our niche in Green Technologies.  It will allow us to further delve into better ways to live that will help  the environment or at least lesson our carbon footprint.  So as we find things out we will document them, put our personal touch on how we will use them and how we like them.  STAY TUNED!

 

    Jay

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Geothermal Heat Pump

The geothermal heat pump is a highly efficient renewable energy that is gaining wide acceptance as a heating and cooling source for use in both residential and commercial buildings. Geothermal heating and cooling uses the relatively constant temperature of the earth usually between 50 and 60 degrees to heat and cool homes and businesses. The geothermal heat pump uses 40-70 % less energy than traditional heating and cooling systems. Geothermal heat pumps are used for space heating and cooling, as well as water heating. The technology relies on the fact that the Earth (beneath the surface) remains at a relatively constant temperature throughout the year, warmer than the air above it during the winter and cooler in the summer, very much like a cave. Geothermal energy is clean (emits little or no greenhouse gases), reliable (95%), and homegrown (making us less dependent on foreign oil).

A geothermal heat pump system consists of pipes that are buried in the ground, a heat exchanger, and ductwork into the building. In winter, heat from the warmer ground goes through the heat exchanger and ductwork into the building. In summer, hot air from the house is pulled through the heat exchanger into the cooler ground.

A geothermal heat pump system costs about $2,500 per ton of capacity. The typically sized home would use a three-ton unit costing roughly $7,500. That initial cost is nearly twice the price of a regular heat pump system that would probably cost about $4,000. Drilling costs which range from $10,000 to $30,000 or more also have to be added in. The investment can usually be recouped in five to ten years.

Geothermal heat pumps are durable and require little maintenance. They have fewer mechanical components than other systems, and most of those components are underground, sheltered from the weather. The underground piping used in the system is often guaranteed to last 25 to 50 years and is virtually worry-free. The components inside the house are small and easily accessible for maintenance. Air is distributed through ductwork, just as in a regular forced-air system.

Lynne

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Benefits of a Tankless Water Heater

Jay and I have been thinking of getting a tankless water heater that runs on propane. There are many benefits of a tankless water heater. Tankless water heaters are small compact units that provide hot water as it is needed. Hot water is not stored like it is in a tank type water heater. A standard tank water heater keeps 40-80 gallons of water heated to a temperature of at least 120 degrees every minute of every day whether your home or not. Because tankless water heaters do not store hot water, they are much more energy efficient and can reduce water heating bills by 10-20 percent. A conventional tank heater is constantly heating and reheating water because heat loss occurs because the water is just sitting in the tank. Tankless water heaters eliminate this heat loss which reduces energy consumption by 20-30 %. According to the Department of Energy, the he average household spends between 14-25 percent of its energy budget on heating water. Tankless water heaters last twice as long as traditional water heaters since they are less likely to corrode since they do not store water. Tankless water heaters also are less likely to leak also since they are not under constant pressure. Tankless water heaters are more expensive than traditional water heaters but they provide significant energy savings and they last longer so they will pay for themselves in a short amount of time. The energy to power tank water heaters come from fossil fuels such as coal, oil, or natural gas which are harmful to the environment. By reducing the amount of power used to heat water, the amount of fossil fuels burned will be less which will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. If all Americans would replace their tank hot water heaters with a tankless water heater, almost 300 million gallons of fuel oil or over 160 million gallons of propane, or over 6 billion kilowatt hours of electricity would be saved a year.

 

Lynne

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