• Greening Up Your Home
    In honor of Earth Day this week, we’re on the topic of sustainability. All of us can contribute to a greener Earth by understanding that, while we can’t control everything, we can control what happens in our homes.

    You can make your home more eco-friendly simply by researching and choosing home improvement products that are kinder to the environment. They’ll also be healthier for your family. Here’s our Top Five list.

    1. Hearth Products
    Today’s hearth products have technologies built in to make them gentle on the environment while maintaining indoor air quality. Direct vent gas fireplaces, stoves and inserts prevent carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide from entering the home, are up to 85% efficient, and many models have intermittent pilot ignition to reduce energy consumption. EPA-certified wood- and pellet-burning stoves and inserts burn renewable fuels, are highly efficient heaters, and have low outside air particulate emissions. Electric fireplaces offer ambiance with no combustion byproducts. Check out the latest innovations here.


    Accentra Pellet Stove


    2. Flooring
    Cork flooring
    is made from the bark of cork oak trees, which are incredibly fast growers. After a portion of bark is stripped from the tree for the flooring, the tree quickly regenerates and grows new bark in place of the removed bark. If you prefer carpet, hemp carpet is 100-percent biodegradable and natural. Made from durable hemp fiber, the carpet isn’t dyed with chemicals and the adhesive is made from natural rubber.


    Cork Floor Tiles


    3. Paints
    Paints that contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds) have been linked to respiratory and related health issues. The federal government caps the VOC content in paint at 250 grams per liter (g/l) for flat finishes and 380 g/l for other finishes (low-luster, semigloss, etc.). Some manufacturers offer even lower levels of VOCs (like 50 g/l) with products likes Benjamin Moore Aura and True Value Easy Care.



    4. Countertops
    Paper-based countertops
    are a green alternative for countertops. Made from tree pulp harvested in carefully managed sustainable forests, paper-based countertops are a great alternative to stone and plastic surfaces. Recycled glass countertops are made from materials like beverage bottles, glasses and windshields. Fly ash (a coal production waste product) bonds the glass with concrete, instead of traditional method of using petroleum-based binders.


    Recycled Glass Countertop


    5. Water Saving Fixtures
    An easy DIY project, low-flow showerheads, will help you conserve our most precious natural resource – water. Quality low-flow showerheads can be purchased for as little as $25 and can achieve water savings of 25 to 60 percent. Low-flow toilets got a bad rap when first introduced since they didn’t flush very well (that’s a problem), but today there are many models with much scoand getting closer to that of traditional single flush toilets.



    So, next time you’re embarking on a home improvement project, why not consider making your home more efficient, safe and sustainable? You’ll love how it makes you and your family feel.
    The following brands contribute content to the fireplaces.com blog.

    Archives

    Featured Stove
    Accentra Pellet Stove
    The Accentra makes it easier than ever to enjoy the warmth and convenience of pellet heat. Maintenance is easy—and rare. A large ash pan lets you burn nearly one ton of pellets before emptying is needed. And, with the optional cast iron hearth pad and outside air kit, you can install the Accentra where other pellet stoves can’t go.
    Featured Insert
    Accentra 52i Pellet Insert
    The Accentra 52i is the latest, upgraded edition of the best-selling Accentra Insert. This high-effiiency, 52,000 BTU unit uses Harman Pellet Pro and ESP technologies to burn any grade of pellet with even heat and precision control. Beautiful accents, like mirrored glass, and easy maintenance are among the many features of the Accentra 52i. Upgrade an existing fireplace opening and experience warmth like never before. Even heat, easy maintenance and distinctive features make the Accentra 52i a practical heating solution. "Built to a standard, not a price."

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