There's a lot of great information in this post and I encourage you to read through it ... however, if you'd rather jump straight to the current challenge, you can do so by clicking here: This Week's Challenge
Last week we got busy and started preparing for fall by cleaning our furnaces. I quickly learned that many of you don't use a furnace to heat your homes ... folks in the UK typically use water boilers, people in the warmer climates don't need to heat their homes, some of you stay warm using radiant heat in the floor and still others use wood heat. And ... some of you are moving into spring instead of fall. So, many of you took on the second part of the challenge to come up with Eco-friendly tips for the coming months.
Our Honor Society (those folks who wrote articles and/or left comments) had a lot to say this week. Let's check in with them:
Good Girl Gone Green doesn't use a furnace ... her heat comes from the floors (fascinating). So, she offers us 5 Tips to Prepare for the Fall/Winter Months. My favorite tip is the first one ... something that many people don't think about but which will definitely make heating more efficient. Which tip is your favorite?
Amy heats her home with wood which they cut from fallen trees. She shares that to ensure efficient burning, one needs to clean the chimney several times a year. And for those folks who have heating ducts throughout their home, they need to be cleaned as well.
EcoGrrl decommissioned an oil tank when she bought her home and installed a new, efficient gas furnace. She lives in Oregon and only uses it during a couple of months each year. She makes sure to change the filter as required.
Mrs. Green shares that in her area, a furnace is something which reaches 2000 degrees and is used for smelting metal ... and she doesn't think she has one in her home. Probably not, Mrs. Green. (lol) In Preparing for autumn the green way, she shares her plan for the coming months. It might surprise you!
Rachel lives in the UK and says that most homes in her area are heated with a boiler. In her words "Here, the usual central heating system is water-based. A boiler (usually burning gas) heats water that is then circulated round radiators in the rooms. There are other systems that use air ducts and other methods, but they are much less common." While having the boiler regularly serviced is recommended, Rachel isn't sure whether that's for efficiency sake or just to keep engineers in business. She was curious about how we, in the US, heat our homes and offers this ARTICLE for anyone curious about the history of heating and cooling in America. Thanks, Rachel ... that was interesting!
Ann shares our banner on two posts this week ... one is about the SS Toroa and the other is about how she recently accomplished something on her bucket list (you can read that one HERE). WhooHoo Ann ... you're a brave girl!
The Organic Blonde lives in a warmer climate so rarely needs heat. She shares that it's important to keep A/C units clean so that they run efficiently. Even though she doesn't get a cool fall/winter, she does make it a point to check for insulation issues so that her family will stay warm during the few chilly days they get. By the way, if you've never visited The Organic Blonde, please do ... her site is filled with great information.
Kelleigh burns wood to heat her home and she shares that it's necessary to make sure the stove pipe is good and clean. Great tip! She's going to think about some other tips for us ... can't wait, Kelleigh!
Why should you care about your furnace? Our Funtastically Green Girl, Lynn, answers that question HERE.
Argentum Vulgaris has given up on blogger and now has a blog on wordpress. In this POST he talks about the challenge and since his area is moving into spring, he shares a great tip that I'm betting most people don't think about. Here's a riddle: if you don't look up, you'll never know ... collecting dust makes it run slow. Know what AV's tip is about?
I'm guessing that Rewinn turns every chore into a fun activity. For example ... look how he handled this challenge at REWinn Scrapbook. Thanks, Rewinn ... love your happy attitude!
Tina (aka The Book Lady) joined us for the first time. So nice to "see" you, Tina! She writes two wonderful blogs: Family Literacy and You and Giving N Sharing. She's asking for our help and would like ideas for conserving heat in a drafty old basement apartment with windows. Anyone have any ideas for her?
Alicia had a bunch of great ideas for us including cleaning filters monthly. But that's not all ... check HERE for more wonderful tips. Thanks, Alicia!
Thanks to the Honor Society for those wonderful posts and comments. If you wrote an article, I have stumbled, tweeted and facebooked it.
There are a group of people who hit the twitter airwaves each week and talk about our challenges using the hashtag #CTWW. We lovingly refer to them as our #CTWW Gang. Joining the gang is easy ... just tweet about our challenges. Ready to meet this week's Gang? Here you go:
If you are on Twitter ... those are great folks to follow and get to know.
Are you ready for more?
This Week's Challenge:
Our challenges are based on the idea that if a lot of us do the same activity at the same time, we'll have a positive impact. So this week we're going to join forces with Mrs. Green for the fourth National Zero Waste Week. The theme is "Reducing waste away from home". Joining this challenge will make Zero Waste Week an international effort. Here you go:
This week, head over to Zero Waste Week 2011 and commit to at least one activity which will reduce waste away from home. Be sure to come back here and share your commitment. The same rules will apply as always ... if you write about it and/or tweet about, you'll be honored next week. After committing to an activity, keep track of your progress because we'll be talking about our successes next week.
So let's join forces with our neighbors "across the pond" and make this a huge, world-wide event! Are you with me??
Until next time ...
WE'RE CHANGING THE WORLD ... ONE CHALLENGE AT A TIME!