remodel Your Kitchen Sustainably: A Guide to an Eco-Friendly Kitchen Remodel

The kitchen is the central hub of the home, but even a simple footprint renovation can leave an environmental footprint. Fear not, eco-minded homeowners! With a little planning and resourcefulness, you can remodel your kitchen sustainably. Let’s explore some ways to create a beautiful, functional, and eco-conscious kitchen.

Remodel Your Kitchen Sustainably

Choose Eco-Conscious Materials:

  • Cabinets: There’s multiple things to consider here. The first is quality. Selecting cabinets that will last 5-7 years, is not a sustainable choice. Companies that are selling lower quality cabinets at what appear on the surface to be a great price point, are selling you cabinets that will need replacement after 4-7 years. Ask about the warranty on the cabinets you are considering. If it’s a 5-year warranty or less, you are getting what you pay for in this case. The second is material. In new England consumers have been conditioned to want all plywood cabinets. This refers to the cabinet construction of the cabinet box, not the face frame and door. Particle board often conjures up images of inexpensive, flat-pack furniture from college dorm days. We work with cabinet companies that use top grade particle board either called furniture board or medium density fiber (MDF) board. This product is much more eco-friendly than plywood and should be strongly considered when eco-conscious materials is important. There are also many new advanced engineered cabinet materials that are the top choice. Some of these product tend to come at a higher price point as they are newer to the market, but I suspect the prices will decrease over the years as they become more widely used. Finally, select a cabinet company that engages in sustainable manufacturing practices. You can see our picks in our Green Product Guide.
  • Countertops: Quartz is the best choice for a high performing, eco-conscious countertop. There are other eco-friendly options like, recycled glass, paper, or concrete. Although theses are sustainable choices, they do not offer performance and longevity, which makes them a poor choice for the kitchen. Quartz is the way  Unfortunately, not all quartz products are made equal
  • Choose sustainable superstars: Bamboo is a fast-growing, renewable resource, perfect for flooring. Cork offers excellent insulation and noise reduction, while linoleum boasts durability and easy cleaning.
  • Seek certifications: Look to work with brands that certify their stewardship in environmentally conscious products. 

Appliance Efficiency:

  • Upgrade to Energy Star heroes: Invest in Energy Star certified appliances – they use less energy and water, saving you money on utility bills and reducing your environmental impact.
  • Consider water-saving features: Choose faucets with low-flow aerators and dishwashers with water-saving cycles. Every drop counts!
  • Think beyond traditional: Explore induction cooktops for precise cooking and energy savings, or even a composting appliance to turn food scraps into nutrient-rich soil amendment.

Water Wise:

  • Faucet finesse: Swap outdated faucets for low-flow models to significantly reduce water waste. Sensor faucets can add an extra layer of water-saving convenience.
  • Leak no more: Regularly check and repair leaky faucets and pipes to prevent precious water from going down the drain.
  • Think greywater: Consider a greywater system to reuse gently used water from showers and sinks for tasks like irrigation.

Lighten Up:

  • LED the way: Ditch traditional incandescent bulbs for energy-efficient LEDs. They last longer, use less energy, and come in a variety of colors to suit your mood.
  • Embrace natural light: Maximize natural light with skylights, light shelves, or strategically placed windows. This reduces dependence on artificial lighting and brightens your space.
  • Smart switches & sensors: Install smart switches or motion sensors to automatically turn lights on and off, preventing unnecessary energy use.

Bonus Tips:

  • Donate or sell: Before discarding old cabinets or appliances, consider donating them to reuse organizations or selling them online.
  • DIY magic: For the skilled DIYer, upcycling old furniture or creating your own décor with reclaimed materials can add a personalized touch and reduce waste.
  • Local love: Support local businesses that source materials sustainably and minimize transportation emissions.

Remember, every small step towards sustainability counts. By incorporating these eco-friendly practices into your kitchen remodel, you can create a space that’s not only beautiful and functional, but also kind to the planet. So get creative, think green, and enjoy your sustainable kitchen oasis!

A Guide to an Eco-Friendly Kitchen Remodel

Decora Cabinetry Miralis Cabinetry