Energy-efficient construction has been a big topic concerning the growing 'green-movement'. Builders use the term 'tight envelope', which means the better a structure can keep out wind, moisture, and rain, the tighter its 'envelope'. Achieving this concept has become easier now that many recycled and/or renewable building materials have entered today's market! If you're interested in saving energy this summer, check out these products that prove energy efficiency is not just for earth day!
Energy Efficiency is not just for Earth day: Stay Cool this summer!
According to the Cool Roof Rating Council, a roof is like wearing white on a hot day; a cool roof is like wearing a white T-shirt: It reflects heat, transferring less heat into the structure. Roofing materials in the past needed to be a light color for this to work. However, new construction materials allow builders/designers to choose darker materials that will reflect heat back into the atmosphere, too. Though these materials cost about $80 per square foot, experts say a substantially lower utility bill quickly makes up the higher costs.
Recycled Plastic Bags
Do you keep or recycle plastic shopping bags? According to the National Association of Home Builders, a new combination of 50% wood fibers and recycled plastics is more durable than traditional treated lumber. Additionally, it is resistant to mold growth than commonly used treated lumber materials.
More info? Recently, there have been more studies concerning the effects of exposure to chemicals found in household cleaning products. Check out How do I detox my home? for key home detox tips!
A clear coating of metallic oxide on this type of windows keeps the heat inside the house during winter months, and outside in the summer. Typically, this coating is used on external storm windows in houses that don't have double-pane windows. The material comes in soft and hard coatings: Soft coatings are applied between layers of glass, while the hard coatings go on the outside. Low-E windows costs are about $60-$110 each, and can reduce heat flow through the glass by 50%, helping reduce heating costs by 10%-20%.