We want to let you in on a little secret. You can have it all when it comes to building your dream kitchen. What we mean by that is this: you can renovate your kitchen in a way that is beautiful, functional, and environmentally responsible.
Spring is the perfect time to start dreaming about your kitchen renovation, so we’re sharing our top 5 insights for making upgrades the “green” way.
1) Use Recycled Materials for Countertop, Tiling, and Cabinetry
The character and uniqueness of quality recycled materials are selling points in and of themselves, but if your goal is to remodel your kitchen with minimal impact on the environment, then it’s truly the best option.
Quarried stones are often used as kitchen countertops, but they have damaging effects on the earth. Rather than granite or marble, we encourage the use of reclaimed wood, recycled glass tile or quartz, and recycled metals. Depending on the style you’re going for, you might also consider preformed concrete using recycled aggregate. Preformed concrete is a nearly zero waste product since you only mix as much as you need.
As for tiles and cabinetry, work with your building team to source reclaimed wood and tiles in your favorite style.
2) Efficient Appliances
Doing your homework is crucial when it comes to your appliance search. With the right ones, you’ll save water and electricity...and lowered consumption comes with lowered monthly bills. Who said being green doesn’t pay off?
We recommend looking at the Energy Star label while shopping for refrigerators, stoves, dishwashers, and other appliances. It’s a grading system the EPA and DOE use that measures the energy consumption of every appliance on the market.
3) Design with Efficiency in Mind
The design you choose can have a huge effect on energy consumption. One of the biggest mistakes you can make during your kitchen remodel is to place your stove next to your refrigerator! The heat from the stove and oven will increase your refrigerator’s energy usage since it will work harder to stay cool.
Partner with an experienced and certified green building team to design and build the most efficient kitchen.
4) Source Locally
Perhaps the largest environmental impact in a renovation can be attributed to the energy required to get building materials from A to B. Rather than ordering materials from the other side of the world, turn to local builders and suppliers in order to keep your kitchen remodel as low impact as possible. Source recycled materials wherever possible, and when you can’t, see what materials are produced regionally.
5) Use a Green Building Expert
Certified green builders are experts in combining cost-effective building science with an ever-expanding selection of sustainable techniques and products.
Working with a certified professional means your remodeled kitchen will be toxin-free and require less energy, water, and resources to use and enjoy. The building process itself will be significantly gentler on the earth, as well.
You will have to make innumerable decisions throughout your kitchen renovation project. Make sure you have the wisdom and experience of a certified green builder to build green and live green.
Steel Root Builders is a member of the Asheville Green Built Alliance the Asheville Home Builders Association. Our firm specializes in low impact buildings and renovations for homes and businesses. Get in touch today and tell us about the space you’re envisioning.