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Energy Efficient Homes

Here at New Energy Watcher we love information when its broken down and presented in such a way that is really easy to digest. This infographic shows how to run an eco-friendly home and where energy savings can be made throughout the home.

Energy Saving Tips For The Home

Browse more infographics.

 

Renewable energy technologies

This is a great video from National Geographic about the renewable energy technology and where it is going. One of the most refreshing things about this video is that is more objective than most and is trying to highlight the benefits of pursuing renewable energy as a sustainable means of generating power.

It’s well worth a watch (it is under 3 minutes long) as not only is it informative but extremely relevant given the current disagreements in the UK at the moment regarding using renewable energy as a major power source.

 

Renewable energy island…

Perhaps one day, when we hear the phrase ‘renewable energy island’ it will refer to the UK mainland. For the time being, though, it refers instead to the Danish island of Samsø, which has a small population of 4300 people but a big reputation for renewables.

Once relying entirely on fossil fuels shipped across from the mainland, Samsø’s energy profile would have been fairly typical for a place of its population and geographical location -  but over time the islanders have adapted according to the renewables model and can now boast an impressive percentage of its energy coming from wind farms, solar panels and so on, cutting the island’s carbon footprint massively. In fact, according to the island’s official site (follow the above link) not only are the island’s electricity needs provided for by the wind turbines – there’s enough left over for the islanders to export clean energy to other parts of the country.

So, how did one small island near the Jutland peninsula become so self-reliant in energy terms – could it be coincidence, or simply sheer hard work?

Well, it all started back in the 90s when the island won a government competition to take part in becoming a model renewable energy community. An engineer from Aarhus had studied the island’s wind speed and sunshine hours and put forward the island for the programme. And the rest is history – there’s a good detailed post on Samsø’s history here.

More info is available at this link - http://samsoe.wordpress.com/

And this video is also well worth checking out

 

Boiler installation options for the home

It goes without saying that boilers are crucial to home heating and hot water generation, and play a large part in the energy efficiency of our homes. As such, making sure that that you have a decent  boiler installed and it is working as efficiently as it can is very important. Of course, boilers can be unreliable and require regular maintenance to ensure after to ensure they are operating effectively.

What type of boiler is best for your home?

There are three principal options for which boiler to install in your home:

1)      Combination (or Combi) Boiler

  1. This is the most popular type of boiler in the UK – estimates suggest around 70% of homes have combi boilers installed
  2. Combi boilers are great when space it at a premium and – they provide heat and hot water direct from the mains supply, which is at once the main advantage and disadvantage of this system – water pressure from the mains is limited

How a combi boiler looks in the home

2)      Open vent boilers

  1. Suitable for larger homes, open vent boilers provide heat and water through a storage cylinder seated in (for example) a cupboard, and water tanks in the loft. The main downside is that although a higher pressure than combi can be maintained – the water only  lasts as long as the heating cylinder has capacity

Open vent boiler setup

3)      Sealed system boiler

  1. This type provides heat and water through a cylinder, with no need for water tanks. Most suited to larger houses with multiple bathroom types and en suites. Again, limited by cylinder capacity.

Sealed system image via NWGas

Who should install your boiler?

Boiler installation to a high standard, should be a high priority for our domestic energy efficiency. Of course, most of the big energy companies offer a wide range of install options. If we take the Scottish and Southern Home Services example, they are currently offering interest free credit, £400 off A-Grade boilers and two years of free cover. See the links below for information on boiler installation, including what type of boiler is best for your home.