Feature

Tip of the week: How to ‘green’ your house

Advice on making your home energy efficient and chemical free

Heat water efficiently. Invest in a “tankless” hot-water heater that starts only “on-demand,”­ or in a solar water-heating system. Besides cutting costs, both can qualify you for a federal tax credit.

Bolster insulation. “Exterior walls, basements, and attics” are usually problem spots. “Fill the cavity any time a wall is open.” Use environmentally sensible insulators, such as “soy-based foams, loose-fill cellulose, and denim,” and opt for the one with the highest thermal resistance, or R-value.

Check kitchen cabinets. Many contain “added urea formaldehyde,” which has been ­classified as a “human carcinogen.” Find formaldehyde-free cabinetry at Greencabinetsource.org.

Don’t use tainted paint. Many paints contain “volatile organic compounds” that can contribute to smog, as well as a host of illnesses, especially in children. Check out Greenseal.org for a list of certified non-VOC paints.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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