An eco-friendly kitchen is the best way to express your concern and love for the environment. Whether building it from scratch or renovating it, do it sustainably. There are many ways you can create an eco-friendly kitchen. Besides, an eco-friendly kitchen lets you save money while conserving the environment. Check out these ideas if you’re thinking of building a sustainable kitchen.
Use Sustainable Building Material
Building a sustainable kitchen starts with sourcing and using sustainable building materials. Bamboo is an eco-friendly, affordable, and accessible building material. You can use it on the floors or cabinets. It’s also good for cookware. Bamboo is also pleasing to the eye and has unique patterns. Hence, a perfect option for the kitchen.
- You can also use lyptus, reclaimed wood, or solid timber on your cabinets. Lyptus looks like red oak and mahogany. Hence, a good alternative if you desire a hardwood feel in your kitchen. You can get lyptus in varying shades, from light to darker shades. What’s more, it takes a short time to grow and mature compared to most hardwood trees. If you want to add character to your kitchen, use reclaimed wood. Finish it with an eco-friendly wood sealer and stain to get a polished look.
- Plywood is also a good option for a sustainable kitchen. But, ensure it’s formaldehyde-free before using it in your kitchen.
- Granite countertops are beautiful. Unfortunately, miners use high energy to mine and cure granite. Instead, use crushed or recycled stone on the counters. They are durable and leave a smaller carbon footprint. Paper stone is also great for the counter. It’s made from recycled paper, natural pigment, and resin-free petroleum.
- There are lots of building materials packaged and promoted as eco-friendly building materials. So always check the green label before buying any building material. If it’s possible, let a certified kitchen contractor help you buy eco-friendly materials. LEED-certified professionals have the knowledge and experience needed to build a sustainable home.
Installing a motion-sensing faucet prevents water wastage. More and more people can’t access drinkable water. Hence it’s crucial to be mindful of how we use water in our kitchens. Install a touch or motion-sensing faucet to conserve water. Motion sensing faucets use an infrared detector to sense the presence of objects. When your hand moves below or in front of the tap, it lets out water. It stops once you move your hands. They are low flow and designed to prevent leakage.
Energy-Efficient Appliances and Lighting
Invest in an energy-efficient refrigerator, dishwasher, oven, microwave, and lighting options. Look at the energy labels before buying any kitchen appliance. All kitchen appliances go through energy efficiency evaluation. The scale runs from A to G (most efficient to least efficient). You might find appliances using the older system A+++ to G (most efficient to least efficient). Involve your kitchen contractor to get the best deals and quality kitchen appliances. Don’t forget your lighting. Install energy-efficient lighting options. Use LEDs since they’re energy-efficient.
Zero VOC Finishes
Most finishes in the kitchen, including paint, wood sealer, and wood stain, release VOCs. It would be great if all the building products and finishes with zero or low VOC. Use organic paints, wood stains, and wood sealers. Cleaning products also contain VOCs. Talk to your kitchen contractor about low or zero VOC kitchen finishes.
Recycle. Upcycle. Reuse
Before picking new building material, exhaust what you already have. Reuse what you have. Don’t throw away old cabinets or work tables. Reuse, donate or take them to a recycling center. This will reduce the earth’s landfills by diverting it to someone who needs it more. You can also repurpose your older cabinets or leftover building material. Repurpose older cabinets to create storage solutions for the kitchen. You can also turn an old cabinet or cupboard into a banquette seat. Use leftover wood to make open shelves. Remember to always use such items until they wear out.
A sustainable kitchen protects the environment by lowering a household’s carbon footprint. It is also energy efficient hence reducing energy bills. If you’re thinking of remodeling or building a new kitchen, do it sustainably. Consider your family’s needs when designing and building a sustainable kitchen. Use sustainable building materials. Always pick energy-efficient appliances and fixtures. Use sustainable accessories, finishes, and approaches when remodeling or building your kitchen.
Author: Bella Clarks