Being energy efficient in your home, from the ground up

10th January 2019

Save energy in your home

Decisions about your interior design and general refurbishment can affect household bills for many years, especially choices linked to using energy efficient flooring in your home.

The same rules apply to office renovation and keeping your business running costs down.

If you are planning a major refurbishment or renovation project, this gives you the freedom to plan an eco-friendly interior design of course.

However, there are many quicker and easier ways to make your property more energy efficient. Some of these will be featured in this month’s national Big Energy SavingMonth (1st to 27th January 2019), so it’s recommended that you watch out for that.

MiHome offers a wide range of smart products for your home; our heating range including the MiHome Smart Thermometer and Smart Radiator Valves,, our lighting range including our light switches in a range of finishes, as well as our energy-saving sockets and sensors.This is the ideal way to manage energy use. But what else can you do, to create greater energy efficiency – from the ground up?


Cutting bills from floors

Ironically, many people who start home improvement projects to reduce energy costs “overlook” their floor! Of course, making sure that roofs, windows and doors trap warm air is vital, but how much heat in your home is going underground?

Wood is a natural insulator. Whether you opt for the superb finish of quality oak flooring, or less expensive but versatile engineered wood flooring, the benefits are equal. With the right underlay underneath wooden flooring is excellent at trapping warm air in your room.

Proper installation is vital though, to leave a seamless and snug finish that excludes drafts.

Fitting underfloor heating beneath wood can be particularly beneficial, in terms of cost-effective heat retention. Flooring is important to anyone who wants to make a wider environmental statement too. To find out more about how flooring can help your energy efficiency take a look at ESB Flooring’s recent article

Do you have existing wooden flooring or natural stone tiles? These are durable and resilient and will last many years. To add further warmth and insulation you could add non-slip rugs.

Cracks and crevices

Having sorted your heat retention at ground level, your attention needs to move upwards to the openings in your room — your doors and windows. Regular reviews of their ability to trap air are vital.

If you have double glazing, check that it’s still functioning well. Are your windows still able to close properly when the weather turns colder? Are there any signs the frames are breached, such as moisture inside? This could be reducing their effectiveness.

Encouraging your household or workforce to close doors behind them can also help prevent warm air flowing out of rooms. Incidentally, as a home or business property owner, you may already know the merits of wall and loft insulation. If you’re unsure if you have this, now is the time to investigate!

Let there be light — and colour!

Next, you could move on to a review of your lighting. Have you installed energy saving light switches? It’s common sense to maximise on natural light in your rooms too. Elaborate window decorations and closed blinds may look beautiful, but if they block sunlight then the room’s occupants will rely more on electric alternatives.

Also, keep in mind the role that light plays in adding perceived warmth to a room. This links to your general interior design too. Warm shades on your walls, natural wood finishes and good ambient lighting all help to create a feeling of comfort in your home or office. This is not just a trick of the eye either. Reds, oranges and yellows absorb heat, making them warmer to the touch. Having herringbone flooring could add to the feeling of movement and warmth.

The reverse side of the coin is stripped back, minimalist decors with lots of metal or colder colours such as grey and white. They may look amazing, but the perception of being “cool” can have you turning up the heating switch more regularly in winter!

Finishing touches

There are lots of small changes you can make, for increased energy efficiency too.

For example, do your curtains need to be lined or replaced with thicker material so that when you shut them, they offer greater insulation? In your bathroom, could you switch your shower head for one that reduces the amount of water you use?

The way you place furniture in a room can also help with energy efficiency. For example, don’t block light fixtures with high pieces, as this means more lights need to be switched on. Also, if you are concerned about gaps and spaces that create drafts, place your sofa or another large item strategically. This tackles the problems while you are planning your permanent solution.

The ultimate in energy efficient living

Energy efficient living is somethinganyone can gain ground on. Choosing your home improvements with care — including major renovations and these small finishing touches — can make your property more energy efficient, adding to the benefits of MiHome in your home.

For more information on improving your energy efficiency in the home take a look at our range of smart home products:

Author bio:

ESB Flooring have the largest wood flooring showroom in North London and over 20 years in providing expert advice and high quality flooring to homes and businesses in the UK. From home renovations and new property developments to office and retail fit-outs, ESB have vast experience in the design and practical aspects of floor preparation and installation.

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