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The Original “Green” Building Material: Brick

Posted by Art Young, Guest Columnist

Feb 19, 2018 1:27:57 PM

Brick is an authentic building material, made from the earth, for the earth.

One of the hottest topics in the construction industry today is “green buildings.” This is a catch-all phrase that describes construction materials and building techniques which are environmentally friendly. These buildings require less energy to heat and cool and save their owners thousands of dollars over the life of the building. They can withstand the ravages of elements for generations and they are most likely constructed of materials that come from the earth.

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'Not All Houses Marketed as 'Green' Truly Are

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Jan 17, 2018 12:34:49 PM

Home shoppers need to be on the lookout for greenwashing.

As home shoppers increasingly are showing their attraction to, and willingness to pay more for, green homes.  It's important to do your research.

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What Determines The Lifespan Of Solar Panels?

Posted by Kyle Pennell, Guest Columnist

Jan 5, 2018 5:50:25 PM

Solar panels don’t last forever. But what determines when and why solar panels die?

The truth is that solar panels don’t typically die in the traditional sense. That is, they remain operational decades after they’re installed, but not as well as they did back when they were new. The slow decline in the panels’ energy-generation capability is known as its degradation rate. When panels produce less than 80 percent of the energy they did when they were new, they’re considered failed, and most solar installers will recommend that they be replaced.

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How to Choose a Kitchen Sink, According to Science – 8 Factors to Consider

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Jan 2, 2018 5:51:40 PM

You need a comfortable kitchen space before anything else.

And the first thing to start with when decorating or redecorating the kitchen is the sink. It’s easy when you have all the choices laid out in front of you.

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How to Choose a Vacuum Cleaner, According to Science – 11 Factors to Consider

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Dec 26, 2017 3:58:51 PM

Buying a vacuum cleaner for the first time isn’t as simple as it used to be.

If you wish to make your house cleaner with dust-free floors and unblemished carpets, it’s time to upgrade. There can be many reasons why you need a vacuum cleaner, but have you thought about the kind of cleaner you want for your home.

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Renew, Reuse and Reduce your Lighting – 10 Quick Tips to Become “Brighter Green”!

Posted by David Gray, Sales Manager, Lamps Plus Professionals

Dec 19, 2017 12:29:57 PM

Builders, contractors, designers and consumers all over the world are switching to LED light options today and saving loads of energy in the process. It’s a great step forward, but it’s just one of many to reducing our carbon footprint as we light our lives.

Here are 10 things you can do to create greener spaces with lighting.

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Five Ways to Reduce Your Dehumidifier Dependence

Posted by Matt Power, Editor-In-Chief

Nov 3, 2017 10:42:56 AM

Compact, portable dehumidifiers use a lot of energy, and now some are connected with house fires. But there are greener options.

Before we talk about alternatives to energy-sucking dehumidifiers, here's a video sample of some of the controversy surrounding these machines.

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Stymied by Sky-High Home Costs, Brits Experiment with Co-op Style Self-Built Model

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Aug 3, 2017 9:40:12 AM

Advocates suggest that the self-built homes will cost just 59 percent of their finished value.

As written by Nick Dowson, Redpepper:

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Identifying and De-Fanging Energy Vampires

Posted by Chris Brooks, Guest Columnist

Jul 6, 2017 10:06:00 AM

Reducing the amount of energy wasted by "passive" devices in the can save up to 10 percent on overall power usage.

We're under increasing pressure to stay connected at all times. As a result, the ability to start faster and stay online is becoming a feature in many of today's electronics. Some electronics still consume power even when they're turned off. Others consume energy while providing secondary functionality unrelated to their primary responsibilities. Such appliances and electronics are called energy vampires or power vampires, and they're becoming more and more common.

What Is an Energy Vampire?

Simply stated, an energy vampire is any electronic that still consumes power even when it has been turned off. The power used is called "standby power" or "phantom load". The feature allows modern appliances to accomplish a bunch of neat tricks. It allows a remote to turn on your TV. It helps your cable box update your TV guide. It helps your electronics keep the time.

Some of the most common energy vampires are computer equipment, television sets, stereo and speaker systems, cable or satellite boxes, and pretty much anything with a clock in it.

Calculating the Cost of Standby Features

Estimates from Energy.gov suggest that standby power accounts for anywhere from 10 to 13 percent of the total amount of power used in the US and Europe. In real dollars, the average family in the United States could be paying as much as $100 a year to cover the costs of the phantom load.

A recent study by the NRDC suggested that power vampires cost the United States as much as $19 billion a year. Over the given lifetime of a microwave, for example, it may consume more power when not in use than it does while working.

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Video: The Overweight Carbon Footprint of a BLT Sandwich

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Jun 26, 2017 9:39:20 AM

There's no such thing as a carbon-free lunch—not even close—as this NPR video illustrates. We're a high-maintenance species.

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