Last weekend I had the pleasure of camping on the South Coast. The days were sunny and warm, the ocean was serene and crystal clear and there were dolphins around every corner. However, the nights were a different story and once away from the fire, without a well insulated tent, good ground cover and an insulated sleeping bag, it was cold.
Much is the same in our homes during winter. The cold weather will always find its way in unless you’ve got effective insulation.
Previously I looked at heating your home using a range of different heating systems. Now, I’d like to look at the areas that you can work on to ensure you are not losing the precious heat that you’ve harnessed or generated.
- Start by blocking any gaps or draughts around your windows and doors. Use a reputable draught sealer or if all else fails a draught snake will do the trick – these products can be found at your local hardware store.
- While windows are great for letting light, sun, and warmth in, once the sun goes down they need to be covered to retain whatever winter warmth you have. While traditional window coverings include heavy curtains, blinds or even shutters, in most Sydney homes a reasonably wighted set of curtains or blinds will do the trick.Remember, curtains should also have a pelmet overhead to create a still air gap in between the window and the curtains.
- If you are considering insulating blinds, then look for honeycomb or cellular blinds. These pull up to become almost invisible during the day and ensure you’re not missing out on any sunlight. The great thing about honeycomb blinds is you don’t end up with the heavy look of thick curtains, but still get the insulating effect. They can look slightly industrial, so consider wooden shutters as an alternative if you’re not after that look.
- For even better window insulation, use shutters on the outside of your home. this stops the condensation getting onto your windows and ensures heat is not lost. Sustainability Tip: old shutters can also be painted rather than replaced during renovations.
- Lastly and possibly the best insulation option for your home is double glazing. Again double glazing will retain heat during winter and deter heat during summer. While double galzing is becoming more popular Australia, it is slightly more expensive than single glazing windows, but the amount you’ll save in heating costs will quickly repay your investment – remember “The most sustainable energy is energy that is saved.”
As always, if you require help sourcing insulating options, discussing rennovations, or installing new windows, contact JSI for a free estimate.
Just Screw It recognises and encourages employing sustainable design and building practices to have a positive effect on the local and global environments.