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5 Suggestions For Building Energy-Efficient Living Spaces 

With ongoing reports of climate change, and increased costs in utilities, energy-efficient homes are increasing in popularity throughout the world.

Whether you are building a new home or remodelling your current house, now is the time to investigate how you can incorporate energy efficiency into your home.

Energy-efficient homes have a higher resale value and will also cut down on your annual energy bills.

5 Energy Efficient Home Essentials

We have gathered some tips to improve the energy efficiency of your new home.

1) Start with an energy-efficient design

If you are building a new home, you want to incorporate energy efficiency straight from the start.

This includes a design that has an efficient heating and cooling system, solar panels, and the correct orientation.

When designing an energy-efficient house, you need to consider every aspect of the house, including the interior and exterior, the roof, windows, doors and type of insulation, as well as the potential to harvest solar heat.

Correct orientation

If your home is orientated to harvest solar power, you will be able to collect and store solar-generated electricity in the summer and use solar heat gain in the winter to heat up your home.

This will conserve energy and reduce your energy costs significantly during the winter months.

In the northern hemisphere, your living space should face south so you can enjoy natural light throughout the day.

Your kitchen could face east to enjoy the morning sun. Bedrooms and bathrooms can face north as they don’t require as much natural light.

Roof Materials

If you live in a hot climate, select a lighter coloured roof. In areas with harsh winters, opt for darker roof materials as this will absorb and store more heat.

A cool roof is a great idea for hot weather as it will cut down cooling bills and keep your home cool even in hot weather.

The type of roofing material you decide on will completely depend on your local climate but can make a big difference to your home’s energy efficiency.

Exterior walls

In hot climates, use colours that reflect light and heat. This will keep the air inside the house cooler, and your air conditioners won’t have to work as hard.

You can look at different insulating materials for the walls, to trap warm air in the winter and repell hot air in the summer.

2) Energy-Efficient Building Materials

You can make your home “green” by using recycled, eco-friendly materials when building your home.

Door and windows

Windows can let in a lot of heat or cold, so consider getting certified energy-efficient windows that are insulated and will keep the temperature inside at a comfortable level. Make sure doors shut firmly to not allow drafts of hot or cold air to escape or enter your room. This will significantly cut down your heating and cooling costs.

Heating and cooling

Heating and cooling systems have high electricity costs, and you should look for options with lower energy usage.

Consider investing in energy-efficient radiators, like the ones from Trade Radiators, central heating, or a central air conditioner with ducts.

Sealing of openings

External windows and doors that do not fit snuggly should be sealed to prevent air from escaping the room. You should consider looking for energy efficient home windows to help prevent air from getting through any gaps. 

Energy-efficient homes are those that are sealed tightly, otherwise, your heating and cooling system will work overtime when air is constantly moving between the home and outside.

Water Heating

Water heating can be expensive, but this is where the summer sun can be beneficial. Solar heat can be used to heat up water which can then be used in the house.

You can also consider getting high-efficiency water pumps, or a tankless water heater.

If you are unable to install these high-efficiency devices, consider installing low-flow faucets. These will ensure that you use less than half your usual amount of hot water.

3) Energy-Efficient Appliances

If you are paying for your own electricity, you want to use as little as possible.

Energy-efficient appliances and other electronics come with a higher price than their less-efficient counterparts, however, they will save you money in the long term as they cut down on electricity usage or depend on renewable energy.

Some energy-efficient home appliances to consider include:

  • Fridge
  • A pool pump that uses solar energy
  • Washer and dryer
  • Eco dishwasher

4) Install Smart Technology

Smart home technology makes it easier to control your thermostat, appliances and lights. You can control all these devices straight from your phone, or the processes can be automated.

Some smart technologies you can install in your home include:

  • A smart thermostat that automatically adjusts the temperature
  • Motion-sensing lights that use halogen incandescent bulbs.
  • A smart water heater that regulates temperature
  • Batteries for solar panels that store excess energy

5) Ideas for Energy Saving

There are some easy things you can do to upgrade your home and cut down on your carbon emissions.

  • Use insulated curtains that will regulate your room temperature.
  • Apply a reflective film to your windows.
  • Use energy-efficient light bulbs.
  • Install reflective window blinds.

Final Thoughts

Going green is not just about saving money, but also about saving the earth.

The five suggestions above will help your home have a low carbon footprint and will allow you to save money in the long run.