Our energy efficient home building tips will help keep electric and fuel bills low. Saving money on utilities, makes those mortgage payments easier by keeping the other bills to a minimum. In essence the house is paying back a bit of its cost each month. The utility bills for inefficient homes can range from $300 to $900 a month, while an efficient home will cost less $100 a month in most cases and no more then $200.
Energy Efficient Home Building Tips Number 1
The thickness of insulation is the first key to energy efficiency. Five or six inches of insulation are preferred.
Closed cell insulation is much more efficient than fiberglass. Closed cell insulation can be sprayed between the studs of a framed home.
When building a frame home, be sure to use 2 by 6 lumber instead of 2 by 4, not only for durability, but also to leave more room for insulation.
Structural insulated panels or SIP and especially Insulated concrete panels ICP are very energy efficient but vary in thickness. The best panels have 5 to 6 inches of dense polyurethane insulation, or polystyrene insulation. This makes thick SIP and CIP much more energy efficient than stick building, provided the thick panels are used. Some brands of panels only have two inches of polystyrene insulation, and this is not enough to provide energy efficiency in most applications.
Density of the insulation in different brands of SIP and ICP is also a factor. Low density can cause the panels to be only half as efficient as those with more density. Check the R-value of each brand because not all panels offer the same R-value even if insulation thickness is the same.
Concrete is not a good insulator, and does not add significantly to the R-value of your home, but it does add significantly to the durability and longevity of your home. Further it protects your insulation and keeps it providing the same R value even hundreds of years in the future. It seals off your home from pests, and vermin, and provides an extremely durable structure. Concrete is for durability and polyurethane or polystyrene are the insulating factors in ICP.
Radiant barrier insulation works best to insulate an attic. As the sun beats down on the roof, heat builds up within the attic during summer and works against the air conditioning. Radiant barrier insulation reflects the sun’s heat and turns it away from the attic.
Smaller homes are much more efficient than large ones. Consider how much space you really need before building a home.
Many of the modern energy efficient homes are between 600 and 1200 square feet of quality construction. They feature thick walls and efficient use of space. By efficiently using space it’s easy to cut down square footage.
Great rooms are best for energy efficiency and the efficient use of space. They improve family interactions and communications. By building a great room to house, kitchen dining room and living room, must less space is required for each room, and multipurpose versatility is built into your home.
Hallways are generally considered wasted space. It is best to avoid them as much as possible in your floor plan. If you must build a hallway, consider making it wide enough for bookshelves, cabinets or other useful storage along each wall. A better option is to build rooms to branch off of the great room directly.
Creating a small home with thick walls and efficient use of space can lower costs, and increase energy efficiency. For more energy efficient home building tips download our 98 page free guide, and read the many articles available on this site.