Energy consumption constitutes one of the highest utility bills for many homeowners. The cost of living is rising in Australia and other nations and much of this cost can be associated with incremental energy costs. If it were possible for a homeowner to avoid paying energy bills then the savings accrued could certainly be channeled towards other facets of life such as healthcare and education. Fortunately, it is now possible to build an energy-efficient house or to redesign an existing house for energy efficiency; such houses will help homeowners to reduce their energy costs drastically.
An energy efficiency houseis ideally designedto avoid any wastage of energy. Additionally, such a house design is capable of generating additional benefits from natural elements, further cutting down on the monthly utility bills. For instance, the building can be designed in a manner that will allow it to tap solar heat during the day thus reducing the amount of electricity needed to keep the home warm. The windows can also be designed to optimize on buoyancy forces, sunlight, and natural wind, to thereby cater for lighting, heating, cooling and ventilation needs, all with minimal reliance on electricity.
If each home was capable of just using the minimal amount energy it required and nothing more, i.e. if all houses were designed for efficient energy use, this would result in a 60% reduction of the current global energy expenditure. This would in turn also contribute to protecting the environment from pollution, developing the poor regions of the world, and uplifting the economic conditions of millions of people across the globe. For a homeowner, an energy efficiency house can help to save on monthly energy costs while also contributing to the environmental-friendly cause of energy sustainability.
There are several ways that a homeowner can build and develop such a house, either as a new building project or as a remodeling project. A few examples of such strategies are; to thermally simulate the proposed building and find key areas that require improvement (window sizes and locations, shadings, insulation etc.), use building materials that capture, preserve, or conduct heat in specific ways so as to optimally minimize energy consummation within the house. Repairing all damages and leaks in the house can also help to prevent the cold air outside the house from entering the living areas. This means that the amount of heating energy required for maintaining warmth in the house during winter will be drastically reduced. All windows, doorframes, walls, joints and sills should as such be firmly sealed, while movable fixtures like doors should be sealed with rubber weather stripers. One can also use window covers made of a heat-resistant material to reduce the conduction of heat from within the house outwards. Flat surfaces like the roof can be used to tap the sun's energy for heating purposes.
Basically, when building an energy efficiency house, emphasis should be placed on controlling the amount of energy required, the source of the energy, and the best way to preserve that energy.
Homeowner's guide and tips for an energy efficiency house