" ALFRESCO AMBIENCE
EcoSmart Fire has launched a new line of energy-efficient designer fireplaces called Outdoor Ranges. Fueled by denatured ethanol, they offer a clean-burning, more environmentally sound source of heat and ambience than traditional fire pits or chimineas. And, these can also be brought indoors, requiring no vent or hard connection. Styles and prices vary from the utilitarian-looking stainless steel "Cyl" (pictured here) at $1,990 to the "Lantern," with its intricate cut-outs and bronze patina finish, for $3,990. All Outdoor Ranges are about 15 inches wide and span in height from 20 to 50 inches.
CONTACT: EcoSmart Fire
" WATER, LOGGED
Even with a low-flow showerhead, if there’s a teen in your household, chances are there’s still a whole lot of water, and money, going down the drain. The Shower Manager ($139) does what neither a digital timer nor knocking on the bathroom door can: cuts the water flow by 2/3 when shower time’s up. It attaches to an existing showerhead and there are three setting options—five, eight or 11 minutes—after which the water flow decreases from torrent to trickle. A family of four taking 10-minute showers could save $128 annually—which means it takes about a year to recoup your investment. In a one-bathroom home, the savings in time and hassle are immediate.
CONTACT: LLC, Global Network Solutions
" HAPPY FEET
If cold floors are not your—or your feet"s—favorite thing about winter, consider radiant floor heating. ThermoSoft‘s microfiber-technology ThermoFloor can be installed by DIYers under existing hardwood and laminate floors and carpets, and purports to save up to 40% on the heating bill. ThermoFloor is made from recycled materials, requires no cementing and comes with a 10-year warranty.