Contrary to popular belief, going “green” does not mean that you have to make big investments with your time or with your money. Making some changes to the home can lower electricity bills and benefit the environment. Learn how to harness green energy to help the environment and yourself by reading this article.

Switch to solar heating systems for water to lower your cost of indoor water. Heating water with electricity or natural gas is not very efficient, but solar water heaters harness energy from the sun to keep water at a steady temperature. Some of these upgrades, while more expensive up-front, may qualify for green energy tax deductions.

Recycling is one of the easiest tasks that can make a greener home. Some towns automatically include costs for recycling in their garbage collection, so look into this! If not, certain states including Michigan will pay consumers to return bottles after use. Recycling is one of the best ways to cut energy costs!

Think outside of the box. While many people think ‘solar’ panels when they think of green energy, there are other ways to take advantage of the sun. If you are building a new home, consider incorporating passive solar design into the home. By building with materials such as concrete or adobe and taking advantage of the sun’s natural heat with south-facing windows, you can create a home that will naturally heat itself in the winter and stay cool in the summer.

Install timers, motion sensors, or sound sensors on lamps, lights and other electrical devices to automate their functions. Such sensors are ideal if you have a hard time remembering to turn off the lights, and because they conserve energy, they can save you a significant amount of your power bill.

Many people who own homes with air-conditioning fail to realize how much energy is used by these units. If you have an air-conditioned home, consider a greener way of cooling off by saving the energy used to cool the air. Try to save air-conditioning for the hottest days. Keep blinds and drapes drawn during the hottest hours and open windows and doors after the sun goes down. Ceiling fans can also help a great deal!

Make sure that all heating and cooling units and registers are not blocked by furniture, window treatments, or kid’s toys. If a piece of furniture must be placed in front of a baseboard heater, leave a space of two feet. This may seem like a waste of space, but this allows you to avoid wasting energy.

Pay attention to the thermostat in your home. Installing a programmable thermostat makes it easier for you to track the temperature in your house, and turn the heat down when you aren’t at home. Between 1 and 3 percent of your energy costs can be cut for each degree you turn it down!

Some people deny that global warming exists, but even these people can still personally benefit from green energy technology. Green energy saves money with just a few minor changes that are easy to do.