When building a new energy efficient home for yourself, it’s necessary to plan from the outset to reduce energy usage across the board. That means that the design, materials, insulation, heating, cooling and many other factors have to be considered in the overall design. Just including some things and forgetting important aspects will result in higher future energy costs.
Here are some tips for designing a new home and what to look out for with architects doing the main planning for you.
Design the Home to Be Energy Efficient from the Outset
Part of designing a home from the get-go as energy efficient is to envisage the home as a building envelope. This means it’s sealed up from the inside to create a bubble. From there, energy isn’t lost unless air is intentionally extracted or filtered for a specific purpose.
Within the envelope, air isn’t moving unless it’s designed to do so. This prevents outside air that might be contaminated or undesirable for other reasons (moisture or excessive warmth or cold) from coming into the home.
Along with the air seal envelope design is the idea that because of the seal, energy once used to generate warmth, cooling or good ventilation isn’t lost through the doors, windows, walls or ceiling/roofing. That is to say, once you’ve paid for that cool, warmth or clean air, it isn’t lost unduly with a need to be replaced. As a result, these types of homes are more energy efficient.
Using Spray Foam for Improved Insulation
Using spray foam in the walls is a better insulation which prevents a loss of heat through the walls and outside the building. Up to 35 percent of heating is retained when using this type of insulation. It’s also flexibly applied too, which makes it an excellent type of building material. See what insulation your architect is planning to use to see if it offers the same level of insulation.
Better insulation means that an HVAC system for heating, cooling and ventilation won’t activate as often to replace what’s been lost through inferior insulation systems. Less use means a lower monthly running cost and a system that lasts longer.
HVAC Systems for Better Heating and Cooling
HVAC systems are well-known in offices but less known in residential homes. As HVAC engineers will tell you, they’re an excellent solution for homes where at times heating is required and other times cooling is required. With climates that vary considerably through the seasons, a single system that offers both features is easier to manage.
The air filtration system along with potential energy efficient benefits from using a heat retention HVAC system that captures heat and recycles it into clean air for redistribution in the home. This ensures the running costs stay lower than with older heating systems.
Only with an energy efficient home built that way from the ground up does the homeowner benefit from the best energy efficiently possible. With increasing energy costs, it’s a sensible way to offset the rising utility bills.