Put a “cool roof” on your building to keep the sun’s heat from entering and remaining in the building. Reflective asphalt shingles, when applicable, can also deflect the sun’s rays back into the atmosphere. Seek Energy Star® qualified roofing products when renovating the roof.
NYC Green House is an HPD program designed to help building owners use materials that are durable and healthy for maintaining or renovating multi-dwelling buildings. Find tips on green cleaning and maintenance, as well as access to some guidelines for materials to use in renovating that can reduce water use, lower energy and heating costs and improve the quality of the air in your building.
Don’t install carpeting in busy entryways or in moist rooms such as laundry rooms, bathrooms, kitchens or utility rooms. Use as little carpet as possible, but if you must, use safer, more durable, and safer carpeting certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute.
For a list of green cleaning products endorsed by NY State and a calculator to help figure out how much money you can save with concentrated green cleaning products, visit the NYS website.
If you’re replacing floor or wall tile, or fixing up bathrooms and kitchens, choose caulks and adhesives that are water-based and low in VOCs (volatile organic compounds).
For common areas including lobbies, entryways, stairwells, and elevators, select materials that are durable, easy to maintain, and easy to clean.
Mechanical rooms and basements are typically minimally-ventilated spaces. If you’re unable to improve ventilation in these areas where it is not already required by code, ask your janitorial supplier about green cleaning products.
Hang insulated, pre-filled and reinforced exterior doors to maintain adequate temperatures within the building. Install Energy Star® rated doorjambs and frames at both the interior and exterior doors to help sustain ideal temperatures within the units.
Use Forest Stewardship Council-certified wood, which encourages environmentally and socially responsible practices in forestry.
Install ceiling light fixtures designed for CFL bulbs. Traditional incandescent bulbs use substantially more electricity than CFL bulbs.
Install ceiling light fixtures that are designed for CFL bulbs. Traditional incandescent bulbs are energy vampires.
Use compact fluorescent light bulbs and motion detectors in common areas such as vestibules, stairways or mailrooms, to save energy and reduce electric bills.
Windows are a great source of light and natural ventilation; however a range hood or Energy-Star rated exhaust fan in the kitchen with sufficient speed to circulate air and reduce moisture build-up is an important part of maintaining an efficient and healthy indoor environment.
Bulk insulation products such as, batts, rolls, blow-in cellulose fibers, rigid boards, expanding spray foam and pour-in-place will keep your building warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
Explore and compare different insulation products to find the best insulation for your project: http://www.naima.org/insulation-knowledge-base/general-overview-of-insulation.html
No need to reinvent the wheel: several reputable organizations have done the background work for you. To find a list of certified cleaning products that are made with safer chemicals, visit Green Seal.
For comfortable interior conditions all year round, it’s important to achieve the right balance of sealing (for energy conservation) and ventilation (for healthy indoor air quality) in your building. Keep windows closed to conserve heat during the winter, and make sure ventilation shafts are in working order.
Mold can be unhealthy for residents, unsightly and can cause permanent stains to floors and finishes. Learn more at the Environmental Protection Agency’s webpage: A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home:
If you’re purchasing tissue or paper towels for maintenance areas, look for products that have post-consumer recycled content, are FSC-certified, or are unbleached “chlorine free.”
Read the product’s ingredients label and be aware of the chemicals that you bring into your building. Products with toxic ingredients should be stored in well-ventilated areas.
When replacing windows, prevent unwanted heat gain or loss in the building by using Energy Star or National Fenestration Rating Council rated windows.