Ecolicious House Conversions [For the eccentric]

My last article, I wrote about traditional house conversions to create an eco-conscious space.  Although these are great methods to cut energy use and money I am about to share some more ecolicious conversions that are not for the faint hearted.

These alternatives take more determination and may require small lifestyle changes.

Solar Water Heater

Image from thesunbank.com
Image from thesunbank.com

Scrap the bulky basement water heater and replace it with a fixture on top of your home. Be prepared to get REALLY hot water!  The houses I used these in I couldn’t even tell the difference from conventional water heaters.  The best part? No energy use, at least not man-made.

One disclaimer; there are many ways to create solar water heaters and the more effort/ money you put into these the better the results.

Compost Bins

Where do you put your food waste? Down the disposal? Or worse, in your garbage??  251 million tons of trash end of in American landfills yearly and 95% of food ends up in those landfills!

Compost bins are easy to make and maintain!

-You need-

  • a small enclosed bin inside the household, for easy access
  • a larger bin outside that has contact with the ground but not with animals!
  • a stick or something to stir with
  • cardboard, woodchips, leaves or something that will get rid of some of the water in the compost

Valhalla does a great job describing compost in this video. <Check it out for more info<

tomato seedlingGrow your own…

Grow your own food! Using that fresh fertilizer you made from food scraps!

Start with easy plants with long growing seasons.  Tomatoes are awesome to start with, even starting inside!

Growing your own food is huge movement currently! You reduce costs and more importantly you cut fossil fuels profusely. Not to mention its a ton of fun and you get lots of nutritious foods!!

All it takes is a minute a day to water and some maintenance on weeds.

Rain Catchment 

Now this one definitely takes more time, knowledge, and possibly money but in my opinion necessary!  Fresh drinking water is becoming more scarce and consistently polluted. To co-create civilian empowerment catching rain is definitely ranked high on my list.

There are many steps that go into converting a house to potable water storage;

  • changing roof tiles to a nontoxic material;

“Use rubber, galvanized metal, or aluminum for flashing and vent seals, and stay away from lead.”

  • clean off the rooftops and gutters and then put a filter somewhere before the storage
  • create a storage space, either outside or under your house
  • more filters!  charcoal filters are great for creating potable water.

Disclaimer: Please do more research on the subject on rain catchment for drinking water before you jump into it, although this is helpful advice I am not an expert on this subject!

There are many other ecolicious house tips on its way but hopefully this is a good start!

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