If you want to make your home more energy efficient and eco-friendly, we’re here to show you what changes you can make to get the best results. Here are our favourite tips for creating a sustainable building and increasing your home’s efficiency.

Use Green and Sustainable Building Materials

There are many natural products and materials that are considered green. These materials offer proven performance and are better for the environment. By using natural products, you will keep your home chemical free and environmentally friendly. 

You can use natural materials for almost all parts of your eco friendly building. For example, there are many natural flooring products. Wood is the most popular but must be derived from a sustainable source. Other alternatives are cork or rubber, which also can be hundred per cent natural.

Improve Home Insulation

Person installing home insulation

Insulation is essential for any eco-renovation because a house can lose as much as 40 per cent due to a lack of it. Insulation is one of the most common home improvements because it brings tangible results. 

After improving your home’s insulation, it will be much more energy-efficient. You will be able to reduce the time you heat your house, and you will reduce your energy bills. To be even greener, you can install eco-friendly insulation to make your home efficient and environmentally friendly. The easiest way to insulate your home is by insulating loft or cavity walls. Insulating your house can save more than £150 a year in energy bills.

Install a Solar Panel System

Solar panels are another popular sustainable investment to improve energy use in your home. This green home upgrade can be costly. Still, it can save you money over time and provide an excellent source of renewable electricity. Solar panel systems can generate hot water or electricity and work well with financial grants such as FIT

Read our detailed guide about solar panel installation and learn how we can help you produce green energy and save on energy bills.

Solar panel systems installed on roof

Photovoltaic (PV) systems convert sunlight into electricity. They don't need direct sunlight to work. Therefore, they can generate electricity even on cloudy days. Usually, these systems cost between £8,000 and £14,000.

Invest in a Renewable Heating System

Heating your home is one of the most significant parts of your energy bills. It also has a huge impact on the environment. There's nothing more sustainable than a natural approach to heating your home.

To help households switch to renewable heating sources, the government introduced the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

Ground source and air source heat pumps are eco-friendly energy sources worth your consideration. Ground source heat pumps use buried pipes to extract heat from the ground for your home's heating and hot water circuits. Air source systems work similarly but pull heat from the air.

Biomass boilers are another option worth considering for efficient and sustainable heating systems. A biomass boiler is a wood-fired heating system that burns pellets or logs to provide central heating and hot water. It should be sufficient for all your heating needs but requires a lot of installation space.

Lay Underfloor Heating

Laying underfloor heating pipes

Underfloor heating (UFH) is an excellent alternative to radiators. It is usually easy to install if you're laying floors during renovations.

It works by circulating warm water through a network of interconnected pipes installed under the floor. 

Underfloor heating provides temperatures only a few degrees warmer than the temperature inside the building. You can connect it with alternative heat sources such as solar thermal or heat pumps.

Use Smart Thermostats and Heating Controls

Smart heating controls can make your existing heating system more eco-friendly by controlling and reducing how much you use it. A smart thermostat connected to your boiler can help save energy by reducing how often your boiler turns on. 

These thermostats help keep your home warm and energy efficient. The average home uses more than 60% of its energy for space heating. Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) controls help reduce it by up to 35%. You should always focus on temperature control because even a 1-degree drop in room temperature can save 10% of energy.

Upgrade Your Windows to Double or Triple Glazing

Double or triple glazing windows are another popular eco-friendly home improvement. Over 10 per cent of a home's energy can be lost through the windows, so yours must perform well. 

triple glazing windows

Replacing your single-glazed windows with double or triple-glazed ones can be expensive, but it's one of the best ways to insulate your home and slow heat transfer. Most double-glazing windows need replacing every 20-30 years to keep them energy efficient.

Upgrade to Energy-Efficient Lighting

Switching to energy-efficient light bulbs is one of the easiest green upgrades you can make. In recent years, the quality of LED light sources has improved significantly. You can also conveniently connect them to intelligent home systems. Replacing LED bulbs may cost around £280, but it will help you save £150 a year.

Recycle Water and Create a Rainwater Harvesting System

Rainwater harvesting is another effective way to save on bills and protect the environment. Why not collect the thousands of litres of rainwater falling on roofs yearly? This water can flush toilets, washing machines and water gardens. 

Rainwater harvesting system

You can build a rainwater harvesting system that collects rainwater through drains and stores usable water in tanks. Another water-saving option is to upgrade your toilets and showers. Low-flush toilets and low-flow shower heads use less water than standard versions.

Start with applying at least one of the abovementioned upgrades, and you will increase your house's energy efficiency and eco-friendliness. To be even more sustainable, consider hiring local building contractors to help you with all the work on your home improvements.

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