The garage tends to be one of the most frequently overlooked areas of the home when homeowners are looking for ways to make their homes more energy efficient. But when you think about it, the average garage is larger than any bedroom in the home (save for perhaps the master bedroom), and it makes up a significant portion of the home’s square footage. All of this is to say that if you’re looking to make your home more green, the garage may be just the place to start. Here are five ways that you can make your garage more environmentally friendly and energy efficient.
Upgrade your garage door.
Garage door technology has advanced significantly in the past decade, especially in terms of energy efficiency. A new garage door—especially one that features double- or triple-layer construction and superior insulation—will increase thermal efficiency levels in your garage and ultimately, your home. This means that your garage will remain a more stable temperature and that the heating and cooling systems in your home will not need to run as frequently, saving you both energy and money. So when you consider the fact that the garage door covers the largest opening in your home, it makes sense to invest in an energy efficient one. If you really want to step things up and make your garage more green, a new garage door is truly the way to go.
Insulate the walls.
Most garages come unfinished, leaving homeowners with bare walls and little in the way of insulation on these walls. Adding insulation to these walls will help reduce energy transfer, working to stabilize temperatures in the garage.
Upgrade to double-paned windows.
Just as with your garage door, swapping out single-paned windows for windows that feature multi-layer construction can make a tremendous difference in the overall energy efficiency of your garage.
Replace inefficient lighting.
Don’t forget about the lighting in your garage, either. Even if your garage has little in the way of overhead lighting, changing even just one bulb to a more energy efficient one makes an impact. Consider swapping out old bulbs for newer fluorescent or LED lighting. Newer, more energy efficient bulbs will allow you to enjoy high intensity lighting at a lower wattage.
Create a recycling center.
If you haven’t yet developed a system for recycling the materials that come through your home, now is a good time to start, and the garage could be just the place to organize it. Consider investing in a few bins, where you can organize paper, plastic, cans, and glass containers. This doesn’t make your garage more environmentally friendly, per se, but it definitely turns your garage into a space that enables a sustainable lifestyle.