What Is a Zero Energy Home and How to Create One
One of the most boring and difficult things in life is having to pay for your bills – you see all that money go and wonder if there will be a time in the future where you won’t have to think about paying your bills at all.
Heating, cooling, and electricity bills can really take a toll on your family’s budget, but it doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do to improve that situation. So-called ‘Zero Energy Homes’ can use energy from the power grid but at other times can give some of that energy back, and here’s how to make your home into one.
The best way to create a zero energy home is to build one from scratch with energy efficiency in mind. Many people choose to have modern plastic foam insulation placed underneath and around the foundation. But also in the walls and the roofing too, as it’s known that we lose a great deal of precious energy through the walls and the roof of the house.
This move will drastically reduce your need for heating and cooling as the walls will be able to keep both warm and cool air for a long time. Proper insulation will ensure that your house doesn’t have any leaks or air loss, and it will create a sort of barrier between indoors and outdoors.
If you want to use as little energy from the power grid as possible, you need to find an alternative way to get electricity for your household. The simplest way would be to install solar panels as a single Sapphire Solar panel can last up to ten years.
Solar panels will minimise the amount of energy you need to heat water, and heat or cool your home, but it will also be an energy source for all your appliances as well as lighting. There are also certain solar systems that don’t have any electric parts at all, and these are called passive solar-thermal systems.
Besides solar panels, many homeowners who want to have a zero energy home opt to get a wind turbine too. These aren’t as common as solar panels, but they’re equally effective and, depending on where you live, can even be more effective than solar panels.
It doesn’t have to be the huge turbine you’re used to seeing next to highways, but a simple one you can easily install in your backyard. If you live in an area that’s windy and there aren’t any obstacles for your turbine (trees, tall buildings, or other houses), you’re free to use wind power to get electricity for your home.
Strategically Placed Windows
Windows are very important in any home because they provide us will plenty of natural light, but also because a lot of heat can escape through the windows if we don’t protect them properly. In order to conserve energy the best way you can, make sure there are strategically placed skylights because these will reduce the amount of artificial light you need in your home. Also, it’s a good idea to get extra-thick windows which are great for insulation.
If you take time and do a thorough research, really preparing your home for the change, you will not only create a ‘zero energy’ home but a ‘positive energy’ one (meaning that your home produces more energy than it can spend). Of course, this can’t happen overnight and it takes a lot of hard work, patience, and money to get there. It’s an investment for the future of our planet and your family, which is why so many people decided to give it a try already.