1. Solar panels
They can be thermal or photovoltaic. Thermal plants take advantage of solar energy and use it to heat water, saving up to 60% of energy consumption in this process. Photovoltaics convert solar energy into electrical energy, which can then be stored in batteries, allowing some autonomy in terms of electricity supply.
2. Thermal insulation
Whether on walls, floors or roofs, thermal insulation is a way to ensure that heat remains inside the house in the winter and helps to stop the inside of the house getting too warm in the summer months. Therefore, we manage to maintain a pleasant and healthy temperature within the home throughout the year, avoiding the use of air conditioning and heating. More insulation = less energy consumption.
We know that a lot of central heating is lost through the windows, but the wrong windows can also cause our homes to overheat in the summer. Rather than aluminium frames, PVC is a good idea, as it helps us to achieve greater thermal stability. If we add double glazing, we improve the insulation even more.
4. Reuse of water
Although not strictly speaking a way of improving our use of energy, better use of water resources is also good for the planet and can also save us money. There are many ways that we can reduce our water consumption with little or no impact on our daily lives. These include water recycling systems, whereby washbasin and bathwater can be reused for flushing the toilet. If we have more space, we can also collect rainwater to be used for flushing and even for watering our gardens. Drinking water is a very precious resource and the less we misuse, the more we will have to keep us healthy and hydrated.
5. Household appliances
The concern with energy efficiency should not end when we buy a house. Once we have managed to fulfil some or all of the measures outlined above, it is easy to forget the impact that our appliances have on our energy consumption. Old appliances are generally very inefficient in their use of energy, and it may well be worth upgrading some. Always opt for
appliances rated A, which are more energy efficient and reduce consumption. It will be worth the investment! An A+++ fridge freezer uses half the energy that an A+ fridge freezer would use, and this is generally using energy 24/7, so just think how much you could save if your refrigerator is an old model, by just changing one appliance!
One of the easiest changes to make: replace incandescent light bulbs with fluorescent ones, which last longer and consume less electricity. A small gesture, but it makes a big difference.