Tag: energy

Advice Center

How to make your home more energy efficient?  

Before you remodel your home or design a new one you should consider investing in energy efficiency, especially during this cost-of-living crisis. You will save energy and money and your home will be more comfortable.  

How energy efficient is your home?  

The first step in this process is to find out how much energy your home uses. And what is the most effective way to improve it. If your home has an energy performance certificate, it will help you identify any possible improvements. You can find any current or expired EPC in the UK on the government’s website.  

The main aspects of an energy efficient home –  

There are often 3 main aspects that are crucial when achieving an energy efficient home design, and they are:  

  • Air quality – 

Adding high quality insulation to your home will make it more air tight. The tighter the air the more heat it retains. However, it’s important to install a good ventilation system. This will allow you to remove the moist air that builds up in your home, without losing heat.  

  • Insulation 

Choosing the right insulation is important when it comes to retaining as much heat as possible. There are many effective ways to insulate your home, which can reduce heat loss. For example: cavity wall insulation, floor insulation, windows and doors, solid wall insulation, etc.  

  • Heating and cooling –  

Since the gas prices are increasing homeowners are looking for the best ways to save some money. Once your home is properly insulated you won’t need as much heat to maintain a comfortable temperature. This is a benefit because you will use less oil, gas or electricity.  

Can reducing a home’s energy efficiency help combat climate change?  

Homes that use energy supplied from the burning of fossil fuels are responsible for a large amount of carbon dioxide emissions. This means improving the energy efficiency of a home can reduce the burning fossil fuels.  

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Advice Center

Energy Crisis 2022: Top ways to save energy in your home 

We have all realised that the Uk is currently going through an energy crisis. The 2021–present global energy crisis is the most recent in a series of recurring energy shortages experienced over the last fifty years. Many households and businesses are struggling to afford the increase in prices, so here is a list of ways you can reduce the use of energy in your home.  

How did the energy crisis occur?  

In 2019-2022 the Covid-19 pandemic first caused the rapid drop in energy demand and a cut in oil production. Then the Russian invasion on Ukraine has threatened the energy supply from Russia to Europe. Russia had interrupted the Nord Stream 1 pipeline flow in early September, precipitating an international gas supply crisis which was particularly felt in European gas markets 

A few energy saving tips for your home –  

Turning off light switches –  

Firstly, turning off a light switch is one of the easiest ways to save energy. If you get in to a habit of subconsciously turning of the lights you will, see a big difference in your bills.  

Install LED lights –  

LED lights have become majorly popular recently due to the younger generation. However, this is a great trend because LED lights use about half of the energy of a halogen bulb. They also look more stylish and are more affordable.  

Turn your thermostat down – 

Almost half of the money spent on bills is taken by heating and hot water. For each degree you decrease the temperature, you can expect to cut bills by 4%. This could save you up to £80-£100 a year.  

Use less water –  

An easy way to save more water is to stop letting the tap run when you’re are not using it. For example, when you are brushing your teeth, or washing the dishes. By doing this you can save around £25 a year. By spending less time in the shower or buying a more efficient shower head can save you as much as £18 per year.  

Unplug your devices –  

Unplugging your devices rather than leaving them on stand buy can save your electricity bill.

Advice Center

Cost effective ways to keep your home warm this winter  

As the summer is coming to a close, it’s time to start thinking about how you’re going to keep your home warm in the winter. With the energy prices increasing its important we look at cost effective ways to insulate your home. So, if you’re looking to save energy and money carry on reading this blog.  

Open your curtains –  

The sun produces natural heat, so make the most of it. Open your curtains and let the sunlight in during the day. While when it gets dark, keep them shut to act as another layer of insulation in your rooms.  

Rearrange the furniture –  

Having furniture in front of radiators can massively impact the temperature of a room. This is because the furniture is absorbing all of the warmth being produced. By moving it away the hot air can circulate around the room.  

Adding extra layers to stay warm –  

This is often the first thing people resort to because is cheap, quick, and easy. Having blankets and jumpers on hand can be a game changer when it comes to saving money.  

Get rid of the draughts –  

Placing self-adhesive tape or rubber seals around your windows and doors will help keep warmth in your home. The Energy Saving Trust estimates DIY draught proofing your home could save you £125 per year.


Bleed your radiators –  

Some people may not know this but to make sure your radiators are working properly; you need to bleed them regularly. Without doing this your radiators will make noises and will stay cold.  

Upgrade or service your boiler –  

Although this may initially be a big upfront cost, in the long run you could use less energy and produce the same amount of heat. You could save up to £350 with a new boiler.

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Architecture & Building, Materials

Get to know the pros and cons of Insulated concrete formwork (ICF)

If you’re looking for a quick structural system with impressive energy performance. Then insulated concrete framework could be a great choice for your build project.  

What is ICF? 

ICF is based on hollow blocks or sheet components, usually made from expanded polystyrene, fastened together with metal or plastic connectors. The panels or blocks feature an interlocking profile, so they can be stacked without bonding materials. Concrete is then poured inside to make the structure secure.

Is ICF energy efficient?  

Once the pour is complete, the ICF remains in place to provide a robust layer of thermal insulation. ICF structures also offer very good airtightness, as the concrete pour and insulating formwork combine to create a highly sealed house shell. In addition, the different thicknesses of ICF blocks, with varying insulation depths, are available to help you achieve your target thermal performance.  

Pros and cons of Insulated concrete formwork –  


  • Speed of build  

The construction is simple and not labour-intensive. Insulated concrete formwork blocks are very similar to Lego blocks in the way they interlock and stack together.  

  • Durability 

ICF buildings are incredibly structurally sound due to the concrete and steel reinforcement that is incorporated into the walls. The buildings are known to be disaster-proof. 

  • Reduced energy bills  

They are incredibly energy efficient and can easily achieve an A rating. This level of efficiency means less energy is required to heat the home, which reduces the energy bill. Owners that have Insulated concrete formwork buildings have experienced as much as a 60% reduction in their energy bills.  

  • Peace and quite  

The blocks used in construction create thick and solid walls, which noise cannot penetrate. If noise is an issue in your area, or you live in a city but want peacefulness then, ICF maybe your best solution.  


  • The walls can be very thick. This can cause limited space in some areas, particularly cities.  

Cost of ICF –  

In addition, depending on the job, the formwork can be inexpensive or expensive. Most Insulated concrete formwork systems on sale cost between £25 and £35 meters squared.  

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Advice Center, The science of a happy home

Everything to know about an Eco-house

What is an eco-house?   

An eco-house is an environmentally low-impact home. Designed and built using materials and technology that reduces its carbon footprint and lowers its energy needs. Eco-homes are important to the environment because they meet the sustainable needs. For example,  

  • Reducing waste by re-using and recycling materials.  
  • Energy generation  
  • Controlling pollution  
  • Water conservation 

Why are they important?  

There designed to have little impact on the planet. Standard homes burn fossil fuels for power and heat; however, the fuels are the leading cause of climate change. Whereas, eco-friendly homes are all about being energy efficient and using natural materials.  

The 3 key elements to most eco homes –  

Renewable energy –  

Firstly, a renewable electricity supply is vital for an eco-house. The most popular way to generate your own electricity is by installing solar panels. Initially, solar panels can be quite expensive, however, in the long run, you will be saving loads.  

Insulation –  

Eco-houses hold onto heat better. In addition, insulation, airtightness, and double/ triple glazed windows are important in sustainable designs. By creating an insulated, airtight house regulates its own temperature. In addition, meaning you won’t need a boiler or a heating system. 

Sustainable materials –  

Finally, an eco-house is one fully built from sustainably sourced and natural materials. Wood is used to build timber frames of eco-houses. It is best to use recycled materials, instead of getting brand ones.  

Benefits of eco-houses –  

  • Lower energy bills  
  • Less maintenance works  
  • Better air quality  
  • Higher property value  
  • Innovative design  

How much does it cost to build an eco-house?  

The price of your eco-house will depend on the size, location, and whether you’re starting from scratch or renovating an old property. In addition, Eco-houses can be very expensive. However, it is proven that in the long term they are actually cheaper.  

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Design and insperation

Eco-Friendly Ways To Improve And Create An Eco-House

Building an eco-house has never been easier than what they are now. They have become the new focus for many new builds, wanting to help the environment.  

What is an eco-house? 

An eco-house is a type of home that tries to lessen its impact if the environment. This affects everything, including the materials chosen to build it. Also, the water and energy usage are set up to be as efficient as possible. 

Are eco-homes good to live in? 

One of the biggest benefits of choosing to build with eco materials is that they are free from harmful chemicals, finishes, and potential environmental pollutants. This makes them safer to build and a healthier home environment.  

Do you need planning permission for an eco-house? 

Getting planning permission for an eco-project will be similar to planning permission on a traditional build. Whether you get accepted will depend on the location and the overall look and design of your project.   

If you are planning to build an eco-house here are some things you should include:  

  • Double or triple glazed windows  
  • Large windows that increase daylight – larger windows means that more sun light will light up the house. This will help you save energy.  
  • High levels of insulation – increasing the amount of thermal insulation is the main component of preventing energy loss.  
  • High levels of airtightness 
  • Heating and/or hot water provision from a renewable source (solar panels, heat pump) 
  • Renewable energy systems, such a solar PV and solar thermal – placing solar panels towards the sun means that you will be getting free heat and electricity gained from the sun 
  • Build with sustainable materials  

How much does it cost to build an eco-house? 

Eco-houses and their various features can be more expensive than traditional homes. However, you should keep in mind that you are making an investment in the environment. In Scottland, it cost around £325,000 to build an eco-house in the Unst, but because of the extra costs, it would come to around £195,000 – £200,000 on the mainland. 

Why are eco-friendly homes important? 

Green homes are environmentally friendly because they make use of renewable and plentiful clean energy sources. They also help reduce your carbon footprint; this would help slow climate change. They reduce air and water pollution and helps maintain clean water resources.  

Alternative Sources of Energy and Eco Homes - Environments in Danger