Upside Down Retrofitting Energy Efficiency, driving down your heating and cooling energy costs systematically.
You don’t have to turn your house upside down to bring energy cost down.
This upside-down pyramid shows some recommended steps to increase energy efficiency. The most important thing to remember is that each step should be carried out in the correct order (1-9) to gain the maximum benefit. The first step is relatively easy, but very cost effective. As you go down the steps, the cost and difficulty of the retrofit increase.
Caulk above and below the window architraves and around internal door architraves, especially around the top of the door.
Caulk the skirting boards to the floor.
Seal up any old wall vents with plaster or closed cell foam backing rod.
Seal up holes inside the kitchen, laundry and bathroom cupboards, where plumbing goes through the wall.
Seal up hidden holes behind fridge, dishwasher and oven.
If you have ducted heating, find the return grill, take it off the wall and inspect and seal the cavity behind it.
In areas, you can reach, inspect the insulation for gaps and compression (under the floor, in the ceiling space.) Insulation works best with perfect coverage.
Draught-proof your exhaust fans in the toilet (Install a flap that opens when the air is exhausted), bathroom and kitchen, and make sure they are ducted to the outside. At the same time put in place supply air vents, which will allow the exhaust fans to operate efficiently.
Install quality window and doors seals/weather stripping, and make sure the bottom of all external doors have a draught stopper device. Go to our webshop for door and window seals.
Cover up all evaporative cooler vents during the winter heating period. Open vents act like chimneys during the winter and suck the warm air from the house. Better yet, have your evaporative cooler removed entirely, and install some localised inverter split systems for cooling.
Remove old box (wall) air conditioners. They are grossly inefficient and leak lots of air. Use split systems for Heating & Cooling, and when they are being installed, ensure the contractor understands that all the penetrations need to be made airtight.
Use expandable foam (in a can) to seal the internal wall cavity from inside the attic space. Also, check gaps and holes in cavity sliding door pockets from above. Internal wall sliding doors can contribute to significant air leakage.
Use Spray Polyurethane Foam to seal and insulate under the floorboards. This is not a DIY job, but make sure the installer also covers the bottom of external walls to prevent wall insulation from falling. Also, ensure the installer is reputable.
There are installers capable of insulating existing external walls with loose insulation. It’s non-intrusive and very effective. Unfortunately, this is not a job for the DIY person.
Replace single glazed windows with double or triple glazed.
Tight, well-sealed homes need proper ventilation to keep adequate indoor air quality. Consider the installation of a whole house mechanical ventilation system. (Energy Recovery Ventilation System)
- Filter Dust
- Filter Pollen
- Guarantee level of CO2 in Living areas
- Recover the temperature of the stale air leaving the living space into the new fresh air coming in.
Install double or triple glazed windows. Ensure the following:
- The gap between panes should be between 10-14mm at least. Any gap smaller or wider impacts on glazing performance.
- The spacer in between the panes is foam and not steel or aluminium
- The window frame is made of wood or thermally broken aluminium
- If you can afford it, get Low-E Glass
- Once installed caulk around architraves.
Undertaking all eight steps will result in the ultimate energy efficient house, but rest assure that each step will bring with it some tangible benefits including lower energy bills!