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Natural Awakenings Dallas -Fort Worth Metroplex Edition


Five Ways To Save Energy and Breathe Easier At Home

There are many large and small ways that North Texas homeowners can make an impact on their indoor air quality and energy efficiency at home, which then impact the larger community. Here are five tips from the pros.

Detox the Air With Indoor Plants: Certain kinds of plants actually help detoxify the air. The air in a house may contain pollutants, allergens and irritants that can negatively affect our health in many ways. Peace lilies remove both carbon dioxide and formaldehyde from the air, and pothos plants remove a number of common toxins. A succulent called mother-in-law’s tongue is great for removing various pollutants, and a good choice for those with a “black thumb” that have a harder time keeping plants alive,

Detox Water and Reduce Plastic Bottle Use: The most commonly used refrigerator water filtration systems or pitcher filters for drinking water only address smell and taste, and filter out chlorine at most. A reverse osmosis water system is the best for filtering out lead, mercury, chromium, arsenic and total dissolved solids, which can carry viruses and bacteria in drinking water.

Kill Bacteria in the HVAC System: Because of moisture in the air and condensation that forms on the unit itself, the heating, venting and air conditioning equipment can be a haven for mold and bacteria. UVC lights can be installed that effectively clean the air of unwanted microorganisms and keeps the system and running more efficiently, extending its life.

Mind The Gaps: Doing home inspections and energy assessments, many people are losing efficiency in their HVAC systems because of unsealed ductwork. Conditioned air leaks into unconditioned spaces instead of flowing to where it is supposed to go, and their systems are working twice as hard to cool their homes as a result. It is important to have the HVAC system serviced regularly to make sure ducts are properly sealed, clean and unblocked, and that everything is running smoothly.

Add Insulation: Another common problem in North Texas homes is too little insulation. The current recommended standard for insulation in Texas is R-43, 15 inches deep. Standards change over time, and while insulation should last 15 to 20 years, if it was installed at a time when the standards were lower, it may be a good time to add more to make the house more efficient and save on energy costs, especially going into the heat of the summer.

Clayton Bailey is the owner of Green Scene Home Inspections. For more information, call 214-796-7707 or visit