Tackling any kind of renovation project is daunting, and doing it the eco-friendly way adds one more major challenge to the list. Yet, there are many reasons to spruce up your bathroom and see it being reborn in a new, greener light.
Outdated bathrooms can be as ugly as a sin, but they also waste a ton of water and electricity in the long run. Therefore, the initial investment is a drop in the bucket compared to the benefits you will reap.
Weigh your options
I want to point out right away that finding a reliable eco-expert contractor can help you navigate the renovation process to your utmost satisfaction. You will most likely save yourself quite a bit of headaches, time, and money.
Therefore, do your homework and carry out online research. Compare different offers before taking the plunge. Companies like Integriti Bathrooms are a sound option as they offer uncompromising quality and help you translate your dreams into reality.
In any event, you also have to decide whether you want to go for a large-scale remodel or renovation on a budget.
In both cases, note that your choice of materials makes all the difference. After all, conventional materials that make up cabinets and vanities, such as plywood and particle board, often contain toxic chemicals and carcinogens. Instead of those, you should use recycled wood, bamboo, reclaimed wood, glass, steel, and concrete.
Make conscientious choices
When it comes to paints, finishes, and coatings, you have to steer clear of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). They are gases emitted from thousands of different products that can cause a variety of health issues. The good news, though, is that VOC-free products abound as well.
Likewise, when choosing wall covering and flooring, stick to products with high-recyclable content, like bamboo, cork, and natural plasters.
While you’re at it, do not forget to recycle what you can. You may not be able to recycle construction debris, but fixtures that are still in decent shape will do. You could at least offer them online or see if salvage stores need your used furnishings and materials.
Test the waters
To drastically reduce your carbon footprint and avoid pouring money down the drain, you will have to cut your water and energy use. So, first off, carry out a thorough inspection to identify any leaks and problems with the plumbing.
When it comes to water-saving fixtures, there is no shortage of options in the market. A conventional toilet uses 1.6 gallons of water per flush, old pink ones devour up to 7 gallons, while a leaky one wastes immensely more. Thus, ramp up water conservation by purchasing an eco-friendly, dual-flush toilet or one with the latest vacuum technology.
Furthermore, conduct a simple, 1-minute test with a bucket with gallon lines to figure out the flow rate of your showerhead. In all likelihood, you will have to invest in a low-flow product, either a laminar flow or aerating-type one.
The beauty of it is that you will not have to sacrifice performance. Finally, consider a new bathroom sink faucet to reduce water consumption by up to 30%.
A matter of efficiency
Energy-efficiency is the essence of a green bathroom transformation. To capture it, look for appliances with an ENERGY STAR logo. Bear in mind that although products like water heaters are technically not in the bathroom, they can help you reduce energy consumption.
So, see if you can get your hands on a solar, condensing water, or tankless water heater.
The final piece of the puzzle comes in the form of lighting. Bring as much natural light inside as possible, but do not fret if you have no windows. Go for LED lights that use 90% less energy than incandescent bulbs, contain no toxic chemicals, and last much, much longer.
Green dreams are made of these
When taking on green renovation, there is a slew of things to consider, from faucets and toilets to floors and ceilings. Think big and start small, step by step. A responsible use of materials and smart choices of resource-saving features go a long way in enabling you to witness the full glory of your new personal shrine of relaxation.
So, trim your utility bills and tap into healthy living at its purest. Remember that you do not have to stop at renovating just your bathroom. Turn a new leaf and boost the eco-friendliness of your entire household.