What makes a renovation energy efficient?
If you are about to renovate or extend your home you can make this major investment more energy efficient and comfortable. Incorporate simple design features into your renovation or your new home, your home will be warmer in winter and cooler in summer saving on energy bills.
Look at the following components:
Ensure living areas face north to take advantage of the winter sun and natural light.
Clever renovation design can compensate for a badly oriented building so seek expert advice.
Contact the Energy Smart Information Centre for a list of builders and designers who specialise in energy efficient housing.
Concrete floors and masonry walls (such as cavity brick or feature brick walls) can stabilise temperatures in rooms with north-facing windows by thermal mass to absorb heat in winter.
Lightweight materials such as timber or plasterboard, used internally will allow rooms to heat up and cool down quickly.
Window Size and Placement
It is important to have the right size windows in the right places to allow the winter sun in and the summer sun out.
Allow cross ventilation in the house to eliminate the need for Air-conditioning.
Use casement, sliding or double-hung windows.
Reduce heat loss through windows with lined close fitting drapes, tight fitting Holland or Roman blinds with pelmets or double glazing
Unprotected skylights and roof windows can be a major source of heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer.
Keep skylights as small as possible and install double glazed skylights.
Draught Proofing and Weather Sealing
Look for obvious gaps under windows and doors
Ventilate bathrooms, toilets and laundry to avoid damp and mould
The most efficient and cost effective way to heat your home is to use one or more space heaters or a zoned central heating/cooling system.
Ceiling height and room placement must be taken into consideration
Hot Water System
Install an energy efficient system (gas, solar or heat pump)as near as possible to the kitchen, bathroom and laundry.
Install a unit that is the right size for your needs
Insulate hot water pipes
Use AAA rated shower heads
Make good use of natural light especially in living areas
Paint your walls and ceilings in light colours
Use compact fluorescent lights in living areas
Large banks of recessed lights, or downlights should be avoided
Visit Energy Smart Information Centre M-F 9-5pm for further information or call 1300 138 638 it is a free service www.energysmart.com.au
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