The Sad Energy Efficiency Rip Off
With the rise in awareness and popularity in energy-efficient homes, more builders are promoting this specialised style of building. And with good reason. A truly energy-efficient home offers all-year comfort (no matter what they weather is like outside) and power savings that can add up to tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your home.
But not all so-called energy-efficient builders are the same. And sadly, many do not have the ability (or even the intention) to build homes that are truly energy efficient. As a result, too many homeowners are getting a lot less than what they are paying for and many are rightly feeling ripped off.
The Illusion Of Energy Efficiency
It’s not uncommon for builders to do the bare minimum to make it seem like their homes are energy efficient. For example, it may sound good to add a few solar panels, some extra insulation, and double-glazed windows to your home. But unless these things are installed properly and integrated into an energy-efficient design, they will do little except add to the cost of your home.
Building a truly energy efficient home takes more than merely adding a few energy-saving features. It takes deep understanding of the physics behind energy-efficient building. And attention to detail to ensure the products you use are installed to maximise their effectiveness. After all, what’s the use of spending extra for premium insulation if your builder leaves gaps everywhere. Insulation gaps not only compromise the internal temperature of your home, they are one of the most common causes of mould.
The Easy Test For Energy Efficient Capability
To determine if your builder has the ability to deliver a home that is truly energy efficient, simply ask them these two questions:
ONE: Are you certified in Passive House Building? The Passive House standard is one of the most rigorous energy-efficient building standards in the world. Builders who are certified in Passive House Building have passed rigorous training in the physics of energy efficient building and have the knowledge to deliver on their promise of giving you a home that is truly energy efficient. Even if you are not wanting to build to this high standard, it’s reassuring to know your builder has the formal qualifications that prove their capability in energy efficient building.
TWO: How many of your homes have been Blower Door Tested? The answer you are looking for is: All our houses pass a Blower Door Test.
A Blower Door Test will verify that a home is airtight – an important aspect of building an energy-efficient home.
A typical pre-1960’s house with strip flooring and timber winders will be ‘draughty’ with an air tightness of around 20 ACH at 50Pa. A post-1960’s home with unsealed windows will be ‘leaky’ with a rating of 15 ACH. An average modern home will have a rating of 10 ACH. And a truly energy efficient home will have an air tightness of 5 ACH or less.
As the saying goes, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.” If your builder is not conducting a Blower Door Test, you can’t be confident their homes are truly energy efficient.
Naturally, we are qualified in Passive House Building and conduct a Blower Door Test on every energy-efficient home we build. And our meticulous workmanship ensures the energy efficient products we use are installed to work at maximum efficiency.
For more information on what it takes to build a truly energy efficient home (and how to be certain you’re getting what you’re paying for), we invite you to book a Free Consultation where we will answer your questions and show you the most efficient and affordable way to get an energy efficient home you’ll love forever.