Creating a green bathroom doesn’t have to mean matching a hunter tub and toilet with sea foam towels and flooring. Unless you’re into that. But for as little space as your bathroom takes up, it can have a profound effect on your utility bills and your eco-print on the planet. With a few design techniques, you can save not only energy and water, but money and earth as well (every little bit counts).
The primary concerns with bathroom remodeling are water usage, electricity usage, design and incorporating eco-friendly materials.
Save the water for the fishies
It’s fairly easy to deal with water usage. In most cases, faucets, showerheads and toilets manufactured today are done so with water savings in mind. By simply seeking out new fixtures, you’re almost guaranteed to waste less water than you do now.
Bathrooms tend to be dark places with poor natural ventilation that must be artificially illuminated at all times of the day. This is bad news bears. If your bathroom doesn’t have a window, you can easily incorporate a solar tube to pull sunlight down through the tube into a skylight-like fixture in the ceiling. You’ll never need to flip the light switch on during daytime again.
Some solar tubes can even power a bathroom vent. One small design change to your chamber equals a dramatic cut in electricity usage.
For the most part, bathroom designs are standard and unimaginative. You’ve got the tub, the toilet and the sink lined up with a bit of floor space in front. The biggest concern is that you have a combined space for taking care of all your business and practicing good hygiene. This almost seems counterproductive. For the sake of healthier living, if you’re remodeling your bathroom, try to keep the toilet off to one side and bunch the sink and tub together. This will help keep more of the germs away from the spaces you use to brush your teeth and hair.
Achieve healthier living for yourself and the planet. Stone and tile are good choices for bathroom floors, tub & shower-surrounds and vanity tops. The vanities themselves are typically made of wood, so look for responsibly harvested, reclaimed or recycled wood cabinets. Your accessories can be green, too. Items like bath mats, towels, benches, towel racks and shower caddies can be found in environmentally friendly stores.
Even if it’s a tight space, a well-planned bathroom can be more of a delight than drain.
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