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COLD? Prepare your home for next winter

COLD? Prepare your home for next winter

Temperatures are plummeting and heating costs are rising. Many Australians feel cold and uncomfortable in their homes due to poor thermal performance of the building. Insulation and airtightness are key.

NatHERS star rating

Houses are given energy star ratings by the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) from 0 (lowest) to 10 stars (highest) with the minimum performance of 6 stars for new homes built now. Unfortunately, the average home only reaches 1.8 stars. Insulation of the whole building envelope will improve this rating: underfloor, ceiling and wall insulation together with double or triple glazed windows make the house more comfortable and cheaper to heat and cool. Read how to calculate your heat loss

Leaky house

Especially older homes are draughty and the air ‘leaks’ at the rate of about 30 changes per hour with newer homes still have unintentional air leakages of 10-15 timer per hour. A high-performance Passive House only allows 0.6 air changes per hour. Read more on airtighness


Solutions

For new homes, the building regulations are increasing from 6 stars to 7 stars this September. If possible, go beyond that to a higher star rating of up to 10 stars, zero-home or Passive House. For older housing stock, add insulation wherever possible including high performance windows and doors. While initially this is a large investment, it pays off with lower bills and having a comfortable home.


Article in The Guardian

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