Family energy efficieny

DIY in Asbestos-Contaminated Areas: Five Life Saving Tips

You love to do home improvement projects, and you want to tackle part of your home that you think may have asbestos in it. Before you start, be aware that asbestos can be a deadly substance that leads to mesothelioma, a rare but deadly form of cancer that affects the protective lining of your internal organs. Before you start removing anything with asbestos or working around any area that may have asbestos contamination, review the following tips – they may save your life: 1. Do not expose yourself for even a short amount of time If you are in the midst of a home improvement project and you just want to forge ahead and not worry about the potential asbestos in front of you, do not yield to that urge. Even a few hours or a single job which involves inhaling asbestos can turn deadly. For example, when one man from England removed his old boiler (which had been insulated with asbestos), the job didn’t take very long. Sadly, although it was his only encounter with asbestos and only lasted a brief amount of time, he was diagnosed with mesothelioma as a result of that exposure and quickly died from the condition. 2. Research the age of your material Asbestos was used in Australia until the mid 1980s. If the building or home you are working on is older than that, you may have asbestos on your hands. If you are working outside, consider the ages of buildings that may have been demolished in your area as well as the ages of existing structures. If you know confidently that... read more

Improving Your Home’s Air Quality By Understanding How Your Floors Can Affect Your Air

When you think of indoor air quality, you may think about filters, HVAC systems or other items that engage directly with the air you breathe. Although these elements are important, you should not let them overshadow other critical elements that also relate to air quality. Namely, the floor you stand on can have a surprisingly huge effect on your air quality. If you want to improve air quality from the ground up, you need to start with your floors. Here are four essential things to consider: 1. The age of your flooring In most cases, the newer your flooring is, the safer and healthier its impact on your air will be. If you have vinyl flooring, for example, it may have asbestos in it if it was made in Australia prior to the 1990s or imported to the country prior to 2004. However, flooring with asbestos only affects your air quality if it is disrupted. If the flooring is peeling, coming apart or has holes drilled into it for wires, then you need to be concerned and consider replacing it. If it is fully intact, it may be okay. In other cases, the age of your flooring may not necessarily indicate that it was made with toxic materials, but the flooring still may have an unhealthy effect on your air simply because it’s old and dirty. For example, in one air quality study, a group of workers exposed to a 20-year old carpet made more mistakes than their colleagues who were not exposed to the carpet. The VOCs (volatile organic compounds) released from this carpet were based on years... read more

About Me

Growing up my parents always yelled at me to get out of the shower quickly to save power. These days we have an eco-friendly set up in our house that has an endless hot water from a hot water system and I’m always looking at easy ways to save energy around the home. It’s funny how these things go in cycles! Luckily for me my kids are also enthusiastic about preserving the environment and saving power so half the time it’s actually by kids find new ways to preserve energy.
We collect all of our tips on this site to help other families save energy as well.