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If you’ve decided to go green in 2015, now’s the time to invest in upgrades throughout your home that will make it more sustainable than ever. As you consider what changes you need to make to help your abode run as efficiently as possible, there are a few factors to keep in mind.
It’s important to separate what truly results in energy savings from expensive yet unnecessary features. If you’re doing a complete overhaul but don’t have a million-dollar budget, you may have to choose between features like a fancy recycled aluminium backsplash and a solar hot water system. (Guess which is the more practical choice?).
Here’s how to renovate your home for maximum efficiency.
Reduce energy waste
It is probably the least sexy topic in environmentalism, but good insulation is one of the most major factors of green building. Consider passive homes, which are built to reduce heating and cooling costs to an absolute minimum: These homes have extremely thick walls that are stuffed with high-quality insulation. Hire a contractor to tell you whether or not you’re due for an upgrade.
On a similar note, ensure that you purchase efficient, tightly fitting windows. Warm and cool air often escape through window panes, making your heating and cooling systems have to work overtime. There are a lot of mechanics involved in window efficiency, but what you’ll really want to pay attention to the product’s U-factor. This number expresses the rate of heat conduction transmitted by the window. An energy-efficient window will have a low U-factor.
Harvest energy sustainably
The next investment you’ll have to make is a method for obtaining renewable energy that doesn’t require the carbon emissions of oil and natural gas. Solar systems, wind energy and small-scale hydroelectric power are all viable options in Australia. Evacuated tube solar is ideal for your water heating system, because it extracts solar energy even when the sky is cloudy.
Heat and cool efficiently
When it comes to heating and cooling your home, the less you can use the AC or heater, the better. These features are energy-intensive, though AC is often necessary in the hot climate of Australia. Switch to a programmable thermostat – this will automatically keep the temperature of your home steady so your AC won’t have to work overtime. The same goes for heating systems, should you need them.
Learn more about Apricus Solar Hot Water Systems or contact us to discuss your needs or organise a solar hot water system quote.