It’s not just a trend; it’s the right thing to do – consider how your remodeling project impacts the environment. If you can save natural resources, eliminate pumping more toxins in the air, or reduce landfill, you are not only contributing on a global scope, your are making your own home more healthy and pollutant free. And it will look just as stylish and modern.
There are a variety of things to consider when trying to “go green” in your kitchen remodel project. One of the first items to ponder is your cabinetry, often one of the most unhealthy components in a kitchen. Pressed board and plywood are usually covered with glue to fuse laminate or veneer surfaces. The glue regularly contains formaldehyde, which gives off noxious fumes.
If your cabinets are in generally good condition, look into cabinet refacing. This option saves the cabinet box, which is relined, and environmentally-friendly doors can replace the originals. The selection of styles and materials is almost unlimited. You will have contributed on another level, by keeping most of the old cabinets, reducing disposal, sparing trees, and shrinking the effects of pollution from manufacturing.
To avoid the “glue pollutants”, explore options in solid wood, metal, recycled glass, end-grain bamboo, recycled paper, sustainable wood, and recycled aluminum. If you use wood, be sure to get assurance from your contractor that it was acquired legally and does not contain unhealthy substances.
For your countertops, there is also an abundance of choices. Green design should be focused not only on beauty but durability. With that in mind, make sure the material you choose can stand up against common spills, like mustard, coffee and red wine. Many are made from recycled materials and look spectacular. For example, look into Shetkastone, Eleek, Lithistone, Squak Mountain Stone, glass products, and icestone.
Ditch the bottled water and install a good water filtration system. Did you know the government standards for tap water are more stringent that bottled water?
When choosing new appliances, don’t think you have to give up style if you go green. Of course, be sure old one can’t be fixed, but if it does, go for a new one with the Energy Star rating.
Gas versus Electric – if you choose gas, remember the lower the BTU, the more energy efficient. If electricity is your choice, the most efficient stoves use induction elements which use less than half the energy of standard coil elements. Ceramic-glass surfaces are also a good choice. Both of these transfer the heat more quickly to the pan.
If you have questions about green cabinet refacing, we are here to help. Contact us by email or give us a call at 303-452-6467.