Winter Eco-Home Solutions
Winter Eco-Home Solutions
Winter is fast approaching and, for lots of us, that means piles of blankets, thick knit jumpers and an ever-steady crank of the thermostat when the weather turns cold.
It’s the sort of universally acknowledged behaviour that stand-up comedians trade in, but the fact is that is simply doesn’t have to be that way. With eco-homes, it requires very little energy to heat your home in winter and keep it cool during the summer, and where you do need energy, you can even generate it yourself.
It’s a perhaps under-appreciated aspect of eco-home design, but at Bespoke Builders, it’s what we specialise in. Eco-homes are more than beautiful, carefully sources properties – they’re a ticket to lower energy bills, more comfortable living and, of course, a better, greener earth.
But what are the winter eco-home solutions that you could employ in your home? Here are some of the biggest.
Adopt Passivhaus Principles
Passivhaus principles are the backbone of modern eco-home design, and though you might not be familiar with the name, the theory is quite simple.
Put at its most basic, passivhaus principles aim to reduce energy use and carbon emissions from homes. Whilst transforming an existing building to comply with passivhaus standards is exceptionally difficult, there are a number of things you can do to increase the thermal retention properties of your home.
These include installing triple pane, low-e glazing in your windows, ensuring your walls and roof are properly insulated and removing any draughts from doors and windows. By adopting these basic passivhaus principles you can dramatically reduce your reliance on additional heat sources.
Install a Ground Source Heat Pump
What if you could generate your own, free, green heating? Whilst solar and wind power have gained solid traction amongst homeowners, it’s ground source heat pumps which promise the most reliable heat production.
Suitable for retrofitting in any existing property (provided you have the garden space) as well as new builds, ground source heat pumps work by laying pipe under the soil at your property, low enough so that it isn’t affected by the weather outside and able to benefit from the naturally higher temperatures found under the ground. A mixture of water and anti-freeze is pumped through the pipes, being heated by the natural warmth, which is then fed back into your property where it’s used to heat water, radiators and underfloor heating.
Ground source heat pumps generate heat throughout the year, whatever the weather and The Energy Saving Trust (EST) says a ‘typical’ ground source heat pump could save you up to £1,200 a year!
Choose Radiant Heating
Radiant heating – heating objects rather than air – isn’t a new idea. In fact, it’s been with us since ancient Rome. The principle is simple – air loses heat much faster than objects do, so heat the objects instead.
Modern radiant heating does away with radiators and instead relies on underfloor heating, a method which dramatically reduces the amount of wasted energy whilst offering a more even spread of heat around your home.
That means no more cold feet, wasted energy and ugly radiators – not bad, ey?