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Energy Efficient Home Design Ideas to Save More Energy

According to the EPA, proper insulation is the most effective way to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Here are some easy and inexpensive ways for you to do so

simphome Energy Efficient Home Design Ideas to Save More Energy

Insulation can come in many forms, but typically it’s made from a material with low heat conductivity and high thermal resistance. It’s imperative to address this issue when you install new home insulation, as old materials have been known to trap excess heat.


Nowadays, the government suggests that everyone make their house more energy-efficient, especially those who build a new home since you can design it fully energy efficient. For you who already have a house, you can also try to redesign the house to be more energy efficient by changing a few things, even though there is a limit to what you can do.

Learn energy-efficient home design before you build a new house or remodel your house to adopt this design. Here is some information you need to know which may help you design a more energy-efficient house.

Energy-efficient home design inspiration for your house

1. Insulation

insulation


Making your house more energy-efficient means that you have to build the house using an energy-efficient home design. That way, your house will only use less energy. Thus, it will save you more money when you use them in the longer term. You should have many things in your home design, and the first is perfect insulation to go against the cold weather.

You will need to install weatherstripping in an area that has gaps, such as windows and doors. This will be able to prevent heat or cold from leaving or entering your house thus, and you will only use less energy to lower or increase the temperature of your home.

If you have a natural gas generator, you need to ensure that it is in good working condition. If you don’t use it very often, you will have to have it serviced from time to time. It would be best to shut off your generator when not in use. You can help save money by only using the amount of power you need and not overusing it.

You should make sure your house is sealed up as much as possible in the summer. It can be hard to do this when the weather is already hot, but you should try to do it. You can also keep the temperature inside at a cooler temperature, so there is less need for cooling.

If you are currently moving to the Southeastern region of the United States, you will find the following info about the natural gas in Georgia valuable.

insulation
(via Canadianinsulationinc and Thisoldhouse)

2. Fluorescent bulbs

Fluorescent bulbsYou could still change the lighting to be more efficient for you who already have a house. The energy-efficient home design lighting you can use is fluorescent bulbs, so make sure you change your old incandescent bulbs after they are burned out.

Purchasing a fluorescent one will be more expensive at first sight. However, it will be cheaper to use in the longer term as you can use it longer than the incandescent one because it produces less heat. (Adding and Scienceprogress)
Fluorescent bulbs-2

3. Programmable thermostat

Programmable thermostat
The energy-efficient home design involves using advanced technology as it can help control everything. And you need to be able to control the temperature of your house. Heating or cooling the room when it is unoccupied will waste both energy and your money.

But if you have a programmable thermostat, you can program it to only heat or cool the room right before you arrive home or right before you wake up. (via Clintonj and Comfort-pro)
Programmable thermostat-2

4. Plant trees

plant trees
It is advised to use more natural lights as your light source. However, you should also control the heat from the sun since it will be able to make your house heat too much, especially in the summer. That is why you need to plant several trees in the right place to give the much-needed shades for your house.
plant trees-2
Plan the energy-efficient home design landscape well so you can get natural lights coming in but still have enough shade to prevent too much heat. (via asphaltmaterials and houselogic)

5. Solar panel

solar panel
The sun will be able to give you free energy for your house, which is why you might want to install enough solar panels in your house. You can use this energy-efficient home design solar panel to heat the water. Thus, you might want to invest in a solar water heater. At first installing solar panels might be expensive. Still, in the longer term, you can lower the electricity cost from the water heating and tax credit which eventually make up the installation cost and give you a huge difference. (via qsdt and chinasteelmaterial)
solar panel-2

Tips for creating a more energy-efficient house (1)

It would help if you also used many energy-efficient appliances and systems, which will make your house become more efficient. Search for a product that has an energy star label, which means those products are more energy-efficient. Those kinds of products might be more expensive at first. However, you can compare how much energy they use every year and see the difference in purchasing a product with an energy star label. For the longer term, they will use less energy than other products in a similar model, so it will cost you less when using it.
Maintenance is also essential to keep your energy-efficient home design in prime condition.

Check the insulator stripping each year to see if it is still in good condition and replace them when necessary. If you want to reduce the heat inside your house, use fewer appliances that create more heat, such as a hairdryer, clothes dryer, oven, and other machines that produce heat when it runs. By reducing the heat creation, you will be able to use less energy to cool down the temperature. That is why try to use that appliance in the cooler time, such as evening or early morning, so you do not feel the need to cool down the temperature while using it.

Tips for creating a more energy-efficient house (2)

To benefit a house with a more energy-efficient consumption, you need to:

Step 1: Reduce the amount of energy you use

Step 2: Increase the amount of energy that your house consumes

Step 3: Reduce excess energy in your home
The idea is simple but not easy. Here are some tips to help you make the transition.

  • 3.1). Completely switch to LED light bulbs – LEDs provide enough light and last up to 25 years!2) buy a programmable thermostat – Smart thermostats can save anywhere from 10% to 40% on heating and cooling costs by setting different temperatures based on time and day.
  • 3.2). Buy more efficient appliances.
  • 3.3). Upgrade your home insulation – get R-20 fiberglass insulation in your attic, cracks in walls, and pipes.
  • 3.4). Switch from A/C to heat – change to heat pumps or heat-recovery units if you want lower upfront costs; otherwise, A/C units can be modified to work as heat pumps.
  • 3.5). Replace old windows with energy-efficient ones or even glass shelving.
  • 3.6). Recycle old appliances and electronics.
  • 3.7). Use more natural light – install daylight tubes in your home.
  • 3.8). Install a rooftop solar photovoltaic system.
  • 3.9). Use LED lighting to replace incandescent bulbs.
  • 3.10). Consider solar hot water systems; check for local incentives for residential system installations.
  • 3.11). Check the energy cost of your utilities and compare that to other areas in your state, which can help you find a less-expensive utility provider.
  • 3.12) Get an energy audit – if it turns out that there are many ways to save energy and money, you’ll want to get an energy audit done by a professional who will review all the details and make suggestions on how to improve your home’s efficiency.
  • 3.13). Use solar energy water heaters, which are great for reducing energy consumption in the house.

Additional tips on how to save money with a more energy-efficient home:

If you want to try and generate your electricity and produce your power, you can go with solar panels or wind turbines. However, these options are expensive many times (you can also get assistance paying for them through government tax incentives).
You can also consider investing in compact fluorescent lights (CFL), LED light bulbs, and decorative halogen lamps; these light bulbs last longer than traditional incandescent bulbs and use less power. Be careful not to touch them when they’re on because they get boiling.

Also:

Step 4. Lower your thermostat

“Lower the temperature on your thermostat while away from home.” In other words, you need to decrease the temperature in your house.
Lower your water flow and use a faucet aerator to increase the water flowing through the pipes to reduce how much you use.
Move stuffed animals out of your bedroom, and don’t keep food, trash, or other non-essential items in your bed.
Use a small fan in an open window if you have a clogged-up one.
Use energy-efficient appliances that consume less energy so they can cool your home more efficiently.
Use CFL light bulbs instead of traditional incandescent bulbs.
Turn off lights and appliances when not in use, and try to turn off house lights when leaving for work or sleep at night.

Step 5. Thriving Compost pile

In detail, you need to keep your piles of food waste as messy, porous, and wet as possible. The more natural microbes feed upon your stuff-soil, the less odor there is of the compost pile you will have.
It would help if you had at least a half meter of loosely packed soil to get food waste composting properly.

Step 6. Get a Greener Roof

Suppose you have a roof that is not in good enough shape and has been damaged by hail or storm, or if it has been leaking for some time, you can install a green roof that will help green up your property.

Step 7. Reduce water use: Water conservation is essential for our environment and economy.

Step 8. Get Low-Flow Showerheads.

In detail, you need to change your showerheads to low-flow showerheads. One way to do this is to replace the spout or sweep with a one-way check ball which forces the water to flow in a single direction against the head, with minimal flow through the faucet. This unit will allow you to use three times less hot water than standard spouts; in theory, that’s about $150 for a newer set of heads from Armstrong WaterWorks (we are not fans of these products, but they worked for us.)
Also:

Step 9. Use Rainwater

If you have rainwater, then have it piped into your house and let it infiltrate your foundation and walls. This idea will increase infiltration and reduce the amount of evaporation.

Step 10. Avoid Over-watering
The turf is hotter, so it takes more water to keep it alive and thriving. Plants also need water, but there’s a difference between having a plant that requires regular watering and one that requires way too much water. This decision can also cause runoff, so you don’t hose down your sidewalks or driveways.

Step 11. Install a Grey Water System in Your Home

Use greywater from laundry and showers to water your house or garden. This idea is a very efficient technique for watering plants, but it takes time to set up.

What is a greywater system?
Answer: A greywater system or “grey” water system is a rainwater harvesting system in which rainwater runoff from rooftops, gutters, and downpipes, is channeled into a holding tank for treatment. Once treated, it flows back to the surface through a distribution pipe or is reused for toilet flushing or irrigation.

Greywater systems are generally well suited to residential applications where high indoor humidity levels are common. In commercial installations, on the other hand, greywater systems may not be cost-effective due to the high cost of treating and storing domestic wastewater resulting from higher levels of user demand and relatively low volume flows.

Step 12. Change to Organic Fertilizers
Make sure you use organic fertilizers (if you’re using commercial ones) and make sure they are natural. They’re better for the environment, and they will provide you with more effective soil than synthetic fertilizers that contain harmful chemicals.

Step 13. Eliminate Lawns/Landscaping: Use alternative gardens such as container gardening, raised beds, extensive landscaping, etc.

Step 14. Seal All Windows. This idea will benefit your home and help maintain your home’s draft.
Install Energy Efficient Windows. Energy-efficient windows with low emissivity coatings reduce heat loss during the winter months.

  • Reduce Heat Loss through Windows
    For windows that are not non-insulated or insulated, the most effective method of heat loss reduction is to use double-pane glass, especially in areas where the outside temperature is 40 °F (-40 °C) or below. When using aluminum frames, it is recommended to use reflective films specially coated on windows to reduce thermal loss by about 30%.
  • Use Insulated Windows for Decks and Porches.
    Install a “Weather Strip.” This idea will provide a fogged area around the windows and seal out the cold. Window air conditioners expel heat so rapidly that they increase the heat gain by as much as ten °F (5 °C), reducing the living space by up to 40 °F (22 °C).
  • Check for Loose or Defective Windows. Repairing loose or defective window screens is costly, but it can be a worthwhile investment.
  • Improve Insulation:
    Use foam insulation to reduce air leakage and heat loss in your attic, walls, and floors. While this will not cure drafts, it can help reduce attic temperature by reducing heat flow out of them.

Step 15. Unplug Unused Chargers.
It looks straightforward. However, many of us make mistakes with the charging stuff in our houses. Unplug unused chargers. It is a way of saving energy and will keep your appliances in good condition.

  • Stores the Cell Phones on Power Strip
    Unplug your appliances when not in use. Remove the plug, or switch off the power strip when it’s not needed, and you can see this will help you save a lot of energy and money.
    For instance, if you are not using your computer, unplug all its cords from the power strips and let them dissipate electricity until you use them again.

Written by Simpson

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