Choosing a Green car

It can be possible to make a big difference to the environment by driving a greener car. We all know that not driving at all is the best solution, but it is not always possible to avoid driving if you live out in the countryside or have a long commute to work which is not on a public transport route.

Recently there has been a lot of promotion of electric cars. These are cheaper to run and better for the environment, but although the are subsidised, they can be very expensive to buy new. If you like buying new cars and have a lot of money then this vehicle could be for you. However, if you do the maths, it will not save you money, despite the fuel being cheaper.

A hybrid car can be a better option as they can be bought second hand. They are cheaper anyway and they are still a good option for the environment. They work on the basis that the petrol engine starts off by driving as normal and then the electric battery charges when the driver brakes and so eventually the battery charges and can run off electric. It can be a good way to save fuel.

These cars can still be expensive and the older models are not so efficient with regards to the MPG as some small petrol cars. It is therefore worth doing some research in to the costs of the cars and of running them. You will have to find out what the MPG is likely to be and look into the cost of the tax as well. It can take time to work out, but be well worth it as it can help you to do your bit for the environment as well as save money.

With technology advancing all of the time, there is always going to be a better car on the market just after you select the one that you want. However, if you keep waiting, you will wait forever and so you will need to make up your mind at some point!

Being green

Being green and Saving money

There are quite a few people that still think that helping the environment can be really expensive. There are some things which will cost you more money, but there are other things that you can do, which will actually save you money.

Changing all of your light bulbs to energy saving ones could save you a lot of money. The bulbs are not normally any dearer than standard bulbs and they will not only last longer but actually use less electricity when they are on. As your bulbs go, if your replace them with energy saving ones, you will save money. Also if you replace light fittings, make sure that they can take energy saving bulbs.

Using less fuel will help you save money and the environment. Whether you are using less petrol for your car or less electricity and gas for your house. Driving less not only saves money on fuel but also on wear and tear on the car and you can cancel the gym membership if you are getting your exercise through walking. It can be worth considering the fuel efficiency when choosing a new car as well. Full electric cars are becoming more popular and they are very expensive, but they will come down in price and there are efficient second hand cars on the market as well as hybrids which could be worth considering as well. Obviously you will need to calculate whether you will save money overall considering the cost of the car compared to others as well as the savings on fuel and tax that could be made.

In the home, we can make some simple savings which will help the environment as well. By turning down the heating by one degree we can instantly save money. We can also save by turning off lights and appliances when we are not using them and by drying washing outside instead of using the tumble dryer. We can also invest a little money to make savings in the future by improving our insulation and by making sure our water tank is lagged. There are even grants to help cover the cost of this sort of thing.

A few simple changes can make a big difference to the environment and save you a lot of money.

The Advantages of Solar Panels

Solar panels are something which more and more people are considering getting. There are two ways of getting them and it is important to think hard about which to go for. You can either pay for the panels yourself and then make that big investment, waiting for the money to come back by way of savings in your electricity bill as well as the feed in tariff you get back. The alternative is to allow a company to install them and they will pay for them but you will only save the electricity and not benefit from the feed in tariff.

If you can afford to make the investment, then this is well worth the consideration. It can be worth getting a few quotations and looking at how much return you are likely to get on your investment. Despite the drop in feed in tariff, it is likely that you will still get a decent return on your money. However, finding the lump sum to do it, can be difficult for some people.

Using a company to do it for you can cut out some of the hassle, they will pay the lump sum and organise the fitting. However, it does mean that you will not benefit form the feed in tariff. However, the electricity savings will still add up as they can reduce bills by a third. You may also find that you become much more aware of how much you are using and cut your usage and so save even more.

When deciding which to go for, it is important to decide which will be best for you now and I the future. Consider what might happen if you want to sell your house, for example or if you manage to have enough money to invest yourself in panel would regret going with the other scheme.

Of course, it is not worth all houses getting solar panels, it depends on which way they are facing, so this may mean that you will not be able to get them anyway. However, if you have a large garden you may be able to put an array on the ground, so look in to all options before you decide against it.

Being efficient with Energy

You may think that using energy efficiently will mean that you have to freeze in the winter or invest in expensive ground source heat pumps. There are ways that people can use less energy, save money and help the environment.

Firstly, turning off things when you are not using them. Many people get in to the habit of leaving a television or radio on all day, even if they are not in the room. They may leave lights on all over the house or put things on stand by instead of completely turning them off. Just being more aware of these things can make a big difference to the environment but no difference to your quality of life or your pocket.

White good scan take a lot of energy as well and there are easy ways to save there as well. For example rather than running your washing machine on a half load every day, put in a full load every other day. Make sure your dishwasher is stacked full before putting it on. Hang your washing up outside on dry days and by the radiator inside on cold days, rather than using the tumble dryer. If you are putting the oven on to cook, then make the most of that heat and if you do baking then cook that at the same time. Only fill the kettle for as many drinks as you need so you are not heating water you will not use.

Once you change your way of thinking and start concentrating on the way that you can be more efficient, you will be surprised at how easy it is. It will soon become automatic to switch things off when you are not using them. The great thing is that this will all save you money as well. This can be a great incentive and when you see your energy bills, it will encourage you to work hard to make even more savings. It feels good to be saving some money and you could even put the savings you are making towards paying for ways to save energy such as insulation and solar panels.

It can be worth listing all of things you could do and looking in to the long term savings you could make. It can be great to be more efficient and save money but also know that you are doing your bit for the environment as well.

History Of Solar Power Usage

Solar power might seem like a new “invention“ but the fact is that the history of solar power usage goes back over 140 years. Inventors back then were just as worried about the world’s reliance on fossil fuels as they are currently.
From 1860 to 1880 Auguste Mouchout worked on a solar powered engine which operated by converting solar energy to steam power. He was motivated due to extensive coal usage in Europe and his knowledge that the coal reserves wouldn’t be around forever.

The French government funded Mouchout’s efforts and he later invented the half-horsepower engine, a steam engine capable of running a water pump. It was sent to be utilized in Algeria, which was highly dependent on coal. Algeria had abundant sunshine and also needed plenty of water.

At the same time, and Englishman in India named William Adams viewed Mouchout’s device as too hard to use for larger applications.  He invented another solution; he built a rack that had many small mirrors around a stationary boiler, which let him get 2.5 horsepower from the engine.

Charles Teller worked with solar power from 1885 to 1889, inventing big solar collectors to be placed on rooftops.  His primary objective was refrigeration and the invention was used to make ice.  He also imagined his gadgets taming the African plains, making them more friendly to farming and development.

Back in 1903, the history of solar power usage shows that Aubrey Eneas built on Mouchout’s designs, making them bigger and more practical.  He sold one finished system for just over $2000 to an Arizona doctor. After just a few days, it was damaged by a windstorm and was no longer useful. Another $2500 system was sold in Arizona but didn’t even make it through the first hailstorm.

Around the same time Henry E. Willsie created two solar plants capable of storing energy from the day for it to be utilized at night. At 15 horsepower, Willsie’s invention composed of flat plate collectors also boasted a superior power rating.

In 1906 Frank Shuman further developed and modified Willsie’s system. It resulted in an engine of 33 horsepower. After transporting it to a plant located in Cairo, the performance improved even more dramatically, with an engine of 55 horsepower.

For the next 50 years, not much was done with solar power. In 1954, photovoltaic cells were invented at Bell labs, and this was a big breakthrough in the industry. During the 1970s, people started seeing, once again, the need for solar power as gas pump prices increased.

Today solar power systems are fully open to individuals for use at their private residence or business use. It has not always been that way, by the middle of the 1980’s the Luz Company had developed various electric solar power plants.

Due to alleged lack of cooperation by the government the company was bankrupt and out of business by 1991, making solar power systems available to the masses.

The history of solar power usage began well over a hundred years ago as experiments conducted by a few inventors. It has become potentially eco-friendly and inexpensive energy for the future. For many who have solar power systems, that potential already has been achieved.

How To Make Money From Your Greenhouse

Many people find themselves extremely successful at growing fruit and vegetables in their greenhouse. If you are able to consistently grow more than you can consume or give away to your family, then you can make some extra money, which is always welcome by selling your greenhouse vegetables and fruit.

You might choose to use your greenhouse to grow vegetables that are usually unavailable at certain times of the year. You will be to sell those vegetables at a local farmer’s market or direct to a select number of customers, who might also be your neighbours.

What should you sell?

The key to selling home-grown vegetables is to know what your market requires. You need to go through the same process that the superstores and global companies go through, when they conduct market research to find out what their customers want them to sell. Obviously your market research won’t need to be quite so substantial, but it will involve you asking your neighbours what they would like you to grow in your greenhouse and perhaps asking your local farmers markets, about which items you should be selling at different times of the year.

If you’re selling home-grown vegetables, you need to consider how much it costs you to move your finished produce to the different outlets that will be buying from you. You will need to add the cost of this travel to your costs for growing vegetables to find out how much you will need to charge after you have added a suitably sized profit.

If you’re only going to sell to a few streets around where you live, your transport costs might only be a new pair of shoes once a year. However, if people are going to visit you at your home, you need to consider the implications of having strangers turn up at your front door at different times of the day or perhaps walking straight down your garden to your greenhouse?

Quality counts

If you’re going to be selling greenhouse vegetables, you’ll have to make a decision about the perceived quality of your goods. You will have seen how your local superstores only sell carrots that are straight and/or of a particular size. You will be losing profits if you turn away the carrots that decided to add a bend and various different shapes and sizes. For you to be able to compete in the market for selling home-grown vegetables, you need to teach your customers to accept a different standard from superstores, and explain how your completely natural products cost less than your competition and, of course, taste better.

When you check your greenhouse vegetable growing operation expenses, you must include any money you spent on maintaining the greenhouse. This might include heating and lighting and the operation of fans, but it might also include replacement panels and making sure that your greenhouse is fully treated against the bugs and weather.

Particularly during a recession, some people are looking to make extra money by selling greenhouse vegetables, whilst other people are looking to save money by paying less for their greenhouse vegetables. If you can provide the link between the two, you could be looking at the successful operation.

You can always add a sideline by growing plants to further enhance your family income. How about growing pineapples during the winter?

Save Energy – It’s Just the Right Thing to Do!

Saving energy does more than just protect the environment. It actually helps you enjoy your quality of life to the fullest. At first glance of the subject, it might not sound that way but it really is true. You just need to think about your options when it comes time to actually save energy.

Let’s start with water conservation. Water is a precious resource in many ways, as it takes a lot to reclaim water from the seas. If we can preserve and protect other natural sources of water, then we are ahead of the curve, so to speak.

Saving water tips include making sure that you limit your washing (or at least bundle it up and do it all in one shot), limiting your baths to once or twice a week, and taking fewer showers. You can also make sure that you turn the water off while you’re brushing your teeth.

It might sound silly to think so much about water, but we have rapidly and dramatically changed the way the Earth is so far, and those changes affect more than what we can see up close. You can use a water calculator to make sure that you are getting some value out of it.

Is it going to affect your expenses? Of course it is! A lot of people get into the concept of green energy because it has a dramatic effect on how much they pay in utility costs. The extra money that you free from this can be used to do all of the things that you like to do. Or it can be thrown into your bank account for another rainy day. It’s completely up to you. Continue reading…

Increase Your Gardening Success with a Greenhouse

It’s frustrating to know that you should eat and would prefer organic vegetables, yet have to suffer the inflated prices of your local grocery supermarket just because the word organic is involved in the process. It makes you look at the greenhouses for sale section in local and national advertising in magazines and online. Perhaps you can, with a little planning, take to growing in a greenhouse of your very own.

You can take great pleasure with growing in a greenhouse the many different vegetables and fruits that will serve your family well, at dinnertime.
People turn to organic food to help them stay healthy. The lack of chemicals used on growing organic vegetables and fruits means that your body is taking in less of the potentially harmful concoctions that are not really suitable for human bodies.

You shouldn’t find organic gardening particularly difficult and once you have a steady plan in motion, you can choose to grow fruits and vegetables that your family enjoy and have them available all year round, in your new greenhouse.

Starting with organic seeds

You will increase your gardening success if you follow some simple rules correctly.

By purchasing organic seeds either online or from an organic greenhouse gardener, you will be well on your way.

You will need to carefully check the labels to clarify that the seeds are completely organic and free of all pesticides, preservatives and chemicals.

You will need to develop a regular routine in looking after the fruit and vegetables growing in your greenhouse. These organic foods grow best when they are able to receive the right amount of light and the right amount of air and water. This is why growing in a greenhouse is a great way to raise your organic food. Despite your thoughts on the contrary, the UK does receive a good amount of sunlight during the year and you can allocate the right amount of air and water so you can organise the right amount of humidity for good growth.

Potting plants in your greenhouse

Many people find they have sufficient space in their greenhouse to add a range of potted plants which can be used all around your garden during the best months of the year without your needing to head to the garden superstore to spend excessive amounts on plants that are being grown in exactly the same way as you are going to grow in your greenhouse.

If you find you have an excess of fruit and vegetables and potted plants, you can always pass these on to members of your family or perhaps, close friends. If you get really carried away, you can make some extra money by selling these items to your neighbours or local farmers markets.

There’s no doubt that growing fruit and vegetables and some plants in your greenhouse is much easier than trying to grow the items in an outside garden where the variable British weather and numerous bugs and pests can damage your entire crop overnight.

Once you have found the secrets to successful growing in a greenhouse, you can pass on your methods to your children and install a lifelong plan to eat better quality fruit and vegetables while providing you with some outside time in the fresh air; all of this can only be great for your health.