As times get more dangerous around us, it is crucial to building a house with energy-efficient home designs. The most energy-efficient home designs are cost-effective, use energy and space better. Also, energy-efficient homes have excellent resale value. Furthermore, they are more comfortable for the inmates. Further, they help in keeping out the adverse effects of global warming and greenhouse gases. Therefore, it is mandatory to have an energy-efficient home design at this time. Thankfully, the technology available today makes this possible. To build and maintain such an energy-efficient home we need to know more.
Features Of The Most Energy Efficient Home Designs
Energy-efficient home designs aim to create a great indoor environment while using minimum energy. However, certain standard vital design elements that enable an energy-efficient home are –
Whole Building System Approach
According to this approach, the home is one energy system. This system minimizes wastage. It also ensures maximum usage of all resources like water and electricity. Furthermore, it keeps costs low.
Proper orientation is essential to make the best use of the most abundant resource of sunlight. Orientation depends mostly on the place and location of the building. Room orientation is also an important aspect to keep in mind.
The walls and foundations need a high thermal mass material. These materials are energy efficient. Therefore, such elements help absorb and conserve heat energy. Some high thermal mass materials are brick, stone, concrete. Also, avoiding low thermal mass materials like steel is necessary.
Continuous Insulation (CI) is a necessary component for an energy-efficient home. Hence, it reduces thermal bridging, thereby cutting down mechanical ventilation costs.
It is imperative to have a moisture barrier that keeps an airtight indoor environment. Too much moisture can lead to the growth of molds. This reduces the environmental quality inside the house. Moreover, it also degrades the look and smell of the interiors.
Indoor Air Conditioning
An energy-efficient home also needs to have an indoor air cooling and heating system that consumes less power.
An energy-efficient house needs to have an efficient ventilation system. Such a system transfers heat from incoming fresh air to outgoing conditioned air, thereby minimizing loss of energy.
Other Key Features
A number of carefully designed aspects make a home energy efficient. Some other key features of energy-efficient homes may also include-
The most commonly used light in energy-efficient homes is Light Emitting Diodes or LED lights, Fluorescent lights, or Halogen lights. They use less energy.
An efficient water heating system is a must for an energy-efficient home. Hence using a solar water heater, high efficiency, and tankless water heaters is necessary.
Cool roofs prevent excessive solar heating and hence prevent the house from heating.
Energy Efficient Appliances And Other Electronic Devices
Energy-efficient homes, however, need to install appliances and devices that keep energy consumption low.
An energy-efficient home must make proper use of available sunlight. Hence they need appropriate windows, doors, and skylights.