Go Green This SummerSummer is a great time for you and your home to go green! The days are longer, the weather’s warmer and it’s fun to enjoy the outdoors. So, this season, what steps can you take to make a positive impact on the world around you?

Try going green with these eco-friendly summer tips!

  1. Raise your temperature.

Changing your thermostat from 72 to 73 degrees is a simple change that will take you less than a minute. Yet its impact is big: you’ll save approximately 40 pounds of CO2 each month. Bonus? A lower A/C bill.

  1. Make the most of windows.

During the day, when the temperature’s warmer, keep windows tightly shut and draw the shades in order to keep your home naturally cooler. At night, if possible, turn off your air-conditioning, and let the cool outdoor air inside.

  1. Install more fans.

Exhaust fans can pull heat and humidity out of your living spaces, and ceiling fans can help reduce your need to crank up the A/C.

  1. Use a clothes line.

Taking advantage of summer sunshine means not needing to use your dryer. This can save you approximately 60 pounds of CO2 each month. Bonus? Air-drying actually helps clothes last longer.

  1. Plug nearby appliances and/or electronics into a power strip; turn it off when not in use.

Plugged-in appliances emit small amounts of heat, even when not in use. A simple flip of the switch on your power strip will help conserve energy.

  1. Avoid the oven.

Summer barbeques aren’t just fun; they are the greener alternative to cooking indoors. If you must cook inside, consider using a toaster oven or the microwave rather than the main oven.

  1. Control your fridge.

Did you know refrigerators can be responsible for as much as 20% of household energy use? Try setting your fridge temp to 37 degrees and your freezer to 3 degrees for maximized use/savings.

  1. Recycle!

Do you pay your bills online? If all Americans did, millions of trees and countless forests could be preserved. Look for ways to trim your trash, making your home greener in the process.

  1. Create organic compost.

Along the lines of recycling, creating your own organic compost out of scraps and waste is an excellent way to make the most of your garbage. Visit the Environmental Protection Agency’s website for more tips on what to do.

10. Grow your garden green.

There’s no doubt that outdoor plants add incredible appeal to homes. When choosing plants, you’ll want to look for long-living perennials rather than annuals. Think of it this way: every plant you keep is a plant you don’t have to replace later.