September 19, 2014
Build your new Home with Energy Efficient Products

If you are building a new home, you must be excited and surely must have planned the design of the actual structure and all the other aspects like landscaping etc. Even as you do all of this, it’s important and very wise to ensure that you are making your home as energy efficient possible. As a matter of fact, the construction phase is the best time to incorporate energy saving features.

Our energy efficient tips:

But how exactly can you make your home more energy efficient which will be both better for the environment and your hip pocket. Here are a few simple ideas as to how you can achieve this:

Building Products:

Construction of a home uses a lot of building materials and resources. A number of decisions that you make about the building products you use will impact the comfort and quality of your home as well as its future maintenance costs. Apart from this, keep in mind that around 40% of the waste that goes into Australian landfills is building waste. Thus it is important to choose durable, energy-efficient and long-lasting materials that are also environment-friendly.

Doors, Windows and Skylights:

Maximise north windows & minimise western, southern as well as eastern ones. Ensure that eaves & awning size are maximised. This will allow the winter sun in & keep the summer heat out. Windows can let in/leak out approximately 40% of your home-heating and cooling energy, impacting heavily on how hard your air conditioning system has to work.

You can easily reduce this particular loss of energy by opting for energy efficient windows. It’s also important to choose openable skylights and windows but ensure that they are completely air-tight once they are closed. This way, you will still have the option to open up the windows when the weather is pleasant and you will end up saving on your energy bills.

Use window treatments like awnings and external blinds on the outside of patio and balcony windows and doors. You can also opt for solar shades, draperies, curtains, blinds and other shades inside. All of these can go a long way in reducing your energy bills.


If your house design calls for timber window frames or if you have wooden decking or flooring ensure that it has come from certified sustainably-managed forests. Alternatively, you can opt for decking that is made from recycled plastic and sawdust composites. If you have timber flooring inside and around the outdoor areas of your home, seal them from all air leaks and insulate it well.


Did you know that the colour of the paints you use can impact the heating and lighting levels in your home and indirectly affect the energy-efficiency in your home? When choosing the colour for your home, try to use lighter coloured paints for the interiors. This will help in improving the indoor daylight levels and will also reduce your dependency on lights during the day.

Solar Products:

Solar products have come a long way and are now within the price range of the everyday person. Today, it’s not difficult to get basic solar panels installed on your roof, in fact the government encourages it, as well as other such products like solar powered water heaters. As a matter of fact, you can also use solar power to light up your home using the landscaped areas of your property. Install solar pavers for your driveways and pathways around your home and reap the rewards. The solar powered lighting that you install in the landscaped areas will add to the beauty of your property and is an excellent way of reducing power costs.

LED Lighting:

Ensure that you have LED lighting across your home and its outdoor areas. LED bulbs will save around 80% of energy and will also last for up to 15 years.

Your Garden:

The outdoor areas and garden and yard spaces can also be used to make your home more energy efficient. Plant as many trees and plants as possible. They will shelter your home from the harsh sunlight and the will reduce your air-conditioning costs.

Some more simple ideas:

In addition to all these aspects, you can also install a greywater system or a rainwater tank. This can be positioned either below the ground, under a deck or above the ground. Ensure that you have some space allocated in the yard for an outdoor washing-line like the good old hills-hoist. This way you can sun-dry your clothes whenever possible rather than relying on a clothes dryer.

Draught-proof the doors and windows by installing efficient draught-excluders on the bottom edges of doors and add sealing strips right around doors & windows. Make sure that you have self-sealing exhaust fans.

It’s not difficult to be more Energy Efficient

When you think of it, it’s not too difficult to add energy-efficient products and ideas into your home and its best to get your builder to help incorporate these while you are in the planning and construction phases. While some of the ideas mentioned here are quite simple each one helps both you and the environment. If you are planning on building a new home or adding on to an existing one with a home extension it is certainly worth while speaking to your builder about all of the different energy efficient options that you have available to you.

After all… It really is an investment!

Have a great weekend.

Shane Caldwell
0414 446 572

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