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With all the talk about sustainability and reducing carbon emissions, it can be easy to think, how much difference will I actually make? And it’s hard to know for sure if all the measures taken have in fact had any noticeable impact the electricity bill. For renters, the motivation to be energy wise is often lower, especially if utility bills are included in the rent. There are, however a few simple steps you can take, that you can be sure will reduce your overall energy consumption.
LED Light Bulbs Use Far Less Energy
As with many innovations, when LED light bulbs were first introduced to the market, they were priced significantly higher than the existing household globes. It was hard to convince the regular householder of the value of the new globe, both in terms of reduced energy consumption and life of the globe itself, especially since many illuminated a very bright, white and unnatural light.
Improved Quality of Light in Recent Years
In recent years, however, the price of LED light bulbs has come down and the quality of the light has gone up. Many LEDs can be expected to last up to 50,000 hours, meaning that with moderate use it is likely to last more than ten years. The light itself now closely resembles that of incandescent globes, but extraordinarily uses 70-80% less energy. When you then consider how many light bulbs are used in a home, you start to see the light.
Install Ceiling Insulation For Big Savings
Installing ceiling insulation, however, is by far the most effective way to save energy. Today it is taken for granted that houses are built with adequate levels of insulation. In fact, the Building Code specifies the minimum R-rating that new homes must comply with. This includes the R-value of the insulation itself, but also takes into account the insulating properties of the other building materials.
Significant Heat Losses and Gains Without Insulation
However, going back a few decades, it was quite common for homes to be built without any form of thermal insulation. Whether it came down to cutting costs, low energy prices, less focus on sustainability and carbon emission, or a combination of these, is hard to know for sure. What we do know, is that uninsulated ceilings can account for nearly half of all the heat gained in summer and account for up to 40 percent of heat lost in winter.
Calculating How Much to Install Insulation
While it does take a bit of effort and organising, the beauty of installing ceiling insulation is that when the job is done it’s done. The manhole is closed and the insulation can be expected to last for the life of the home. Many brands come with either a life time guarantee or at least 50 to 70 years, which effectively is the life of the home. This means that a once off investment will yield savings on energy bills year after year. When you are working with your budget and figuring out how much to install insulation, you can reasonably expect to earn back the money spent over the first few years on reduced energy bills.
Pink® Batts® Thermal Ceiling Insulation$ 9.05–$ 10.54 p/m2 inc. GST
Knauf Earthwool® Ceiling Insulation Rolls$ 5.94–$ 11.85 p/m2 inc. GST
430mm | Knauf Earthwool Ceiling Insulation Segments$ 9.06–$ 19.23 p/m2 inc. GST
430mm | Autex GreenStuf® Polyester Ceiling Insulation Pads$ 16.89–$ 21.49 p/m2 inc. GST