26 May
2015

Inkjet and Toner Saving Software and Solutions

Posted by Norman F, May 26th, 2015

We have covered the costs, non eco friendliness, and inconvenient inkjet printer cartridge area in several articles including refilling inkjet cartridges.  We recently ran across several software programs that claim to help reduce the amount of ink you use while maintaining high resolution quality prints.

Ecofont is a free typeface that looks like Arial but has lots of little holes punched in it, so it will require up to 20% less ink to print. At sizes of 12 point or larger, the holes are very visible. Selecting the font Century Gothic will also reduce the amount of ink that is needed.

inkgard costs $9.99 a year and claims to have upto 75% ink & toner savings. It works on your PC in the background and uses ‘intelligent image processing’ to prevent wasteful overlapping of droplets and toner particles.  They also sell replacement ink.

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variable Speed Pool Pumps, multi speed pool pump

Swimming pool pumps use a ton of electricity. It is estimated that they use up a shockingly high percentage of all residential power and use almost 1500 kWh of power each year. Spa pumps and heaters use up to 2250 kWh of energy every year. The pool pump uses most of the power, so finding energy efficient pool pumps is very important. It pushes water through filtration units and has not changed in many years. New variable speed pool pumps are now available. They are energy efficient and are quieter by running motors slower, but run for longer periods of time.

Pool Pump Power Usage

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27 Apr
2015

Eco Friendly or Green Remodelling – Kitchen Cabinets, Construction

Posted by Norman F, April 27th, 2015

green kitchen, eco-friendly kitchen

It is spring and many people including us are interested in remodeling. Our last project was in our kitchen, here are some lessons we learned.

Green Construction

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22 Apr
2015

Earth Day – Become more Eco-Friendly and Green

Posted by Norman F, April 22nd, 2015

Earth, Reuse, Hands Holding Earth

Happy Earth Day, Monday April 22, 2015. It’s great that more attention is being paid to eco friendly, green causes. Earth Day started slow, but has gained momentum every year. We celebrate it everyday as do many of our readers. Look for local events in your community.

Take time to help educate friends, neighbors, family members, and strangers about ways to lead a more eco friendly or green lifestyle. Only through extended enlightenment, can the cause succeed.

  • Change all your lightbulbs to CFLs
  • Walk or take public transportation instead of driving your car today.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
  • Recycle everything you can today. Learn new ways to recycle items.
  • Plant a new tree in your garden
  • Stick to organic, sustainable, and local products today.
  • Eliminate your junk mail
  • Start using a reusable bag

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9 Apr
2015

TXU Energy Efficiency Rebates – Oncor Energy Efficiency Rebates

Posted by Norman F, April 9th, 2015

TXU Energy Rebates
New TXU Energy rebates have been added for 2015.

Utility Company TXU Energy has a bunch of programs and incentives to help save energy, go green, and save money. They serve the Texas area and are the Number 1 Electricity Provider in the State.

  • 3% Cash Back Loyalty Reward for selecting an energy plan – Payable by the end of February for the previous calendar year to eligible customers in good standing as of the payout date who have remained a customer continuously from date of enrollment on an eligible plan.
  • Brighten Internet controlled thermostat. It can save you up to $180 a year in energy.
  • Refer a friend and get $50
  • Sign up for renewable energy in Texas

Questions, call TXU Energy at 1-800-883-6060.

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1 Apr
2015

Fuel Efficient Tires – Tires with Good Fuel Economy

Posted by Norman F, April 1st, 2015

Car's Ski Rack Storage Box

Different types of tires have different fuel efficiency characteristics, so when you are shopping for new tires, you many want to keep in mind how Energy Efficient auto tires are. Of course you should keep your tires inflated to their recommended pressure levels. Tires affect vehicle fuel economy mainly through rolling resistance. Bigger tires, rims and wider tires are heavier, less aerodynamic, and create more rolling resistance. Unfortunately no standard on rating efficiency exists. Bills have been introduced to create such a rating.

An interesting publication on Tire Fuel Efficiency states:

“A 10 percent reduction in average rolling resistance, if achieved for the population of vehicles using replacement tires, promises a 1 to 2 percent increase in the fuel economy of these vehicles. About 80 percent of passenger cars and light trucks are equipped with replacement tires. Assuming that the number of miles traveled does not change, a 1 to 2 percent increase in the fuel economy of these vehicles would save about 1 billion to 2 billion gallons of fuel per year of the 130 billion gallons consumed by the entire passenger vehicle fleet. This fuel savings is equivalent to the fuel saved by taking 2 million to 4 million cars and light trucks off the road.”

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12 Mar
2015

BPA in Canned and Packaged Foods, BPA in Water Bottles

Posted by Norman F, March 12th, 2015

Credit: Washington Post

Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a controversial chemical used to make plastics and has been in the news again. Many regard it as a dangerous chemical while the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says it is safe at the levels people are exposed to it at.

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23 Feb
2015

Save Money – Washing Clothes in Cold Water

Posted by Norman F, February 23rd, 2015

clorox Greenworks natural laundry detergent

Saving Money and Energy by Washing Clothes in Cold Water

We use Seventh Generation laundry detergent (Great for those with sensitive skin or allergies) in our washer and noticed that the box suggested saving energy by using cold water for washing all clothes. US Dept of Energy calculates that 90% of energy used in washing clothes goes toward heating the water. Save up to $60 a year by using cold water. If 70% of US households washed their  clothes in cold water, we could provide energy 4.4 million households. In 2012 it was estimated that approximately 40% of homes washed their clothes cold water.

In the old days, you would not think about doing this, but with modern washing machines and improved detergent formulations, it is now feasible to only use cold water to wash clothes.

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3 Feb
2015

SCE Rebates or Southern California Edison Rebate for Energy Efficiency

Posted by Norman F, February 3rd, 2015

Southern California Edison energy efficiency rebate form
New rebates have been added for 2015

Southern California’s power utility Southern California Edison rebates are here.  SCE has a bunch of cash SCE rebates and ways to go green and save money.

  • Energy efficient appliance up to $75 rebate Qualifying Energy Star Refrigerator, $50 or up to $200 Energy efficient Electric Water heaters – Expires December 31
  • $50 back on Refrigerator or Freezer recycling
  • Solar Energy rebates including Photovoltaic (PV) incentives for solar panels
  • Solar water heating incentives up to $1834
  • Up to $35 on Whole House Fan or Energy Star qualified room air conditioner. Expires December 31, 2013
  • Up to $20 back on a portable room air conditioner
  • Up to $400 on Energy Efficient Evaporative Cooling. Up to $200 rebate with Window Evaporative Cooler
  • Air conditioner rebate, up to $1,100 back
  • Up to $200 on Variable speed pool pumps and motors.
  • Lamp Exchange program, trade in your qualifying halogen and incandescent lamps for highly efficient, ENERGY STAR-rated fluorescents lamps.

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14 Jan
2015

PG&E Energy Efficiency Rebates 2014 – 2015

Posted by Norman F, January 14th, 2015

pge energy efficiency rebate form
New PG&E rebates have been added for 2015. Most expire 12/31

Our local utility Pacific Gas and Electric – PG&E has cash rebates and ways to go green and save money. Here are some PG&E Energy Efficiency Rebates:

Heating and Cooling Read the rest of this entry »