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Published On: Wed, Oct 31st, 2018

What’s next in home energy efficiency?

The movement toward energy efficiency in the home isn’t slowing down in 2018. On the contrary, the trend is getting stronger and stronger. Owing to advancements in technology, homes consume less energy and, in any case, they don’t drive up utility bills. Energy-efficiency homes, as well as smart homes, are the latest thing.

Sustainable architecture is an investment taking into account that electricity rates are continually increasing and energy accounts for a large percentage of spending by households. Homeowners spend billions on electricity in order to heat and cool their dwellings and operate appliances or cars.

photo/ StockSnap

Technology is advancing at a rapid pace, not to mention that society is progressing in a straightforward path, so it’s only normal to want to know what is to be seen in the future. It may be too early for some people to start thinking about 2019. Nonetheless, for those who have the intention to update their homes, the New Year is already here.

In what follows, we will present the trends that no doubt will dominate the future of housing.

LED lighting

LED is an acronym that stands for light-emitting diode. It’s practically a light source. LEDs require only 30-60 mill watts to operate, they are durable and shockproof, and can reduce pollution. The light bulbs create luminescence in a semiconductor material. Luminescence is the process by which light is emitted by a substance that hasn’t been heated. The British experimenter H. J. Round was the one who discovered electroluminescence as a phenomenon.

LED lighting has been around for more than 50 years. We have gotten so accustomed to it that we fail to question who brought it into the public eye, not that it really matters. LED lights is considered to be the best. They consume only 20% of the energy used up by traditional light bulbs. What is more, they last 25 times longer. LED lighting has a bright future. Sales will continue as long as inventory remains. As far as worldwide production is concerned, light-emitting diodes are forecasted to reach a market penetration of 60% by 2020.

Experts predict a widespread adoption of LED lighting in homes. In spite of the fact that there are many efficient technologies when it comes to light bulb choices, this one is the most likely to be introduced in homes all around the world.

Awning windows

Frequently, awning windows are confused with casement windows, although there are great differences between the two. The two window types are opened via a crank mechanism, so as to provide maximum ventilation and natural light. Awnings are comprised of numerous top-hinged sections that are arranged in vertical series and are available in several configurations. Awning hardware is quite easy to obtain, so it’s possible to prevent the formation of corrosion.

Awning windows have many benefits as compared to other types of windows. In addition to versatility, it’s worth mentioning energy and money savings. The fixtures are capable of trapping the heat and releasing it into the property. This results in spending less on energy bills. What happens during the cold months of the year? Well, the amount of cold in the air is decreased and leaks don’t get into the home. Put simply, homeowners have the opportunity to control energy costs. Their savings go a long way.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota say that awnings contribute to more green buildings. Then, it must be true. Peak electricity demand is significantly reduced, so there is no denying that this is a great truth. Attention needs to be paid to the fact that not all awning windows are the same. This means that each application is different. The good news is that there are many options.

Smart chargers

As the name suggests, a smart charger is a device that is able to cut off the power to gadgets after a certain period of time. The power supply communicates with a smart battery pack management system so as to control and oversee the charging process. What the charger does basically is monitor the voltage of the battery, its temperature and time under charge to figure out when to finalize charging.

More and more automotive manufacturers incorporate smart chargers into electric vehicles. But when will they be present in our homes? It’s impossible to answer this question. It largely depends on how long it takes regular individuals to understand their effectiveness.

With smart charging, not only will homeowners be able to avoid unnecessary costs, but also get the most out of their charging stations should there be limited power capacity. We all keep devices plugged in even when they are fully charged. All this has to change. This doesn’t mean giving up on technology. We live in a modern era and we couldn’t say goodbye to gadgets even if we wanted to.

Smart charging results in monetary benefits, as it’s possible to take control of the charging process at the time when capacity is extremely necessary. The point is that residents won’t be using power when they don’t need to.  

Ductless heating and cooling systems  

It has been estimated that half of the hot and cold air that is produced by a heating and cooling system is lost through the ducts that are supposed to distribute the air throughout the property. This is the reason why modern air conditioners no longer employ ducts. In other words, they are ductless. A device of this kind is made up of an indoor unit that is mounted onto the wall and an outside compressor.

Ductless heating and cooling systems offer a high degree of flexibility in the sense that it delivers air to different zones. They are meant to serve as a replacement for inefficient air conditioning units. The compact units can be used together with traditional furnaces to provide four-season heat and cooler in colder climates.

Most importantly, they save money. The ductless heating and cooling systems operate on less power and make it possible for regular individuals to create comfort zones in their homes. This may not seem as much, but it matters a great deal. Ductless air conditioning units may very well be the next thing.

Author: Cynthia Madison

About the Author

- Outside contributors to the Dispatch are always welcome to offer their unique voices, contradictory opinions or presentation of information not included on the site.

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