Homeowners are usually focused on taking on projects that can improve our home’s comfort, functionality, and aesthetics. True, our families deserve a liveable and comfortable house where they can feel safe and protected. But while we’re busy working on things for our benefit, we often forget what it’s like for the environment around us. This is where sustainable home improvements come to view.
One amazing home project these days are deck or patio additions. This is a great way to provide your family members with an outdoor living space and take you closer to nature itself. But did you know that you can also build this exterior addition in a sustainable way that won’t harm the environment? Here’s how to do it.
Pick an eco-conscious design
When it comes to planning your outdoor decking area, you should focus on an environmentally sound design. As much as possible, you want the project to have a minimal carbon footprint impact. For instance, when it comes to building your deck, it is a good practice to avoid excessive digging. You can dig at certain spots by marking the support beam’s location.
In positioning your deck, make sure to choose an area shaded by trees or protected from the sun’s harmful rays. Doing so prevents you from building extra structures for shade and using more building materials. The last part of the design is decoration, wherein sustainable options are recommended as well. You can place plants, install outdoor solar lighting, and buy recycled deck furniture.
Source your materials locally
You might have already known that one of the top contributors that harm the environment is the construction industry. And the primary reason? Well, it’s the need for transport of the building materials to different faraway locations. The fleet, such as ships and trucks that are utilized for the transportation of the building materials, pollutes the environment by consuming fossil fuels.
If you want to take part in helping the environment breathe a little cleaner, it is advisable to source your build materials and supplies locally. Not only this could help minimize the pollutants released into our surroundings, but you also get to save a few bucks on the side.
Perform proper maintenance and repair
Another crucial part of building and using a deck or patio is regular maintenance. In terms of cleaning, be sure to avoid using harsh chemicals that are not only bad for the environment but you and your family’s health too. Instead, opt for chemical-free cleaning products, homemade solutions, and natural cleaners. For instance, you can create your green cleaner at home by mixing baking soda or white vinegar with water.
In addition, make sure to always opt for repair work before considering replacements to save on cost and materials. For more challenging tasks like fixing a leaking under-deck roof, it’s always best to hire a professional in repairing under-deck ceiling systems. This prevents you from causing more damage to the ceiling or gutter system and giving your deck more years.
Another fantastic way of helping the environment while saving money is through recycling what you can to build your outdoor decking area. Use what you already have and avoid sourcing new materials. Help reduce the need to cut down another tree or perform another harmful manufacturing process. If you cannot find materials to recycle, try acquired readily recycled ones like reclaimed lumber or timber. Such kind of materials often requires little to no harvesting or processing, and transportation too.
Use a wood-alternative frame
If you have decided to go for a wood-alternative decking or patio frame, there are tons of other options to choose from. This is ideal if you don’t have access to recycled materials or cannot afford new ones. Instead of wood materials, you can use aluminum, which is recyclable, rust-proof, fire-resistant, and durable. It also does not need great maintenance, is easy to install, and is very light. However, take note though that aluminum can be more expensive compared to other framing materials. Be sure to account for the initial cost first and see if it suits your budget.
Green deck and patio additions can be rewarding for your home’s value, your health, and of course, the environment. However, keep in mind that this kind of eco-friendly build can be initially costly if you are not resourceful and careful enough with the project. Start your lovely sustainable decking area now!