The following is a contribution from another author.
An energy efficient home is something we all strive for, but there is no denying that much of the advice on the subject can be confusing. There are so many different factors to consider, and ideas to implement, that even knowing where to begin can seem overwhelming.
Sometimes, it’s helpful to go back to basics and establish a set of rules that form the foundation of your approach to any task. Below, we have sought to put together three simple, straightforward, and easily-implemented rules that form the bedrock of any energy efficient home.
Rule #1: Get smart
It should come as no surprise that our first recommendation for a more efficient home is to utilize smart devices. There are two specific types of smart devices that are suitable for improving energy efficiency:
- If you have yet to upgrade to a smart thermostat, make the change as soon as possible. These clever devices allow for complete control of your energy usage, helping you to reduce your home’s overall consumption with relatively little effort on your part.
- We all know that we shouldn’t leave electronic items on standby, but it can be difficult to remember to turn each item off at the switch every single time. Simplify the process by using smart switches
Rule: #2: Protect the “shell” of your home
The shell of your home is all of the exterior components; your windows, your doors, your brickwork, your roof, and so on. The interior is important, but the integrity of your home’s shell is essential to energy efficiency; if the shell is compromised, then your energy efficiency is compromised too.
It’s therefore worth examining your home’s shell to ascertain its overall condition. Examine each of the areas named above to ensure there are no holes or gaps that could cause heat to leak, and also consider upgrading to energy-efficient options such as made to measure aluminium doors and thermally-protected windows. Even smaller measures, such as adding an extra layer of insulation to your attic, can make a big difference when it comes to energy efficiency.
Rule #3: Central heating is the last resort
For the vast majority of families, a dip in external temperature means immediately turning the heating on. While this is understandable – a well-heated home is essential for human health – it’s always worth asking yourself whether you need to turn the heating on.
It’s helpful to get into the habit of constantly questioning your use of your heating system. Every time you go to switch the heating on, or turn the temperature up, ask yourself if there’s anything else you could do – such as adding an extra layer of clothing or wrapping up in a blanket – to provide extra heat. This simple question is incredibly powerful, helping you to become more conscious of your energy usage, which tends to result in lower overall consumption.
There’s a lot to consider when it comes to ensuring your home is as energy efficient as possible, but the core principles as mentioned above are the baseline from which to start. By focusing on these areas, you will be able to achieve a solid foundation for home energy efficiency, which you can then look to build on and improve in future.