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Energy efficiency in your new home is very important during any time of the year as it directly affects your overall utility bills. During both the summer and winter months, we want to ensure we keep as much of that conditioned air, from both the air conditioner and furnace, within the home. Today, we wanted to explain a few of the features we utilize in our new homes that help to keep this conditioned air within the building space and not lost to the outside, which in turn will lower your monthly energy bills.
First of all, for our wall insulation we use a blown-in fiberglass composite material. This insulation is a loose fill product which condenses to fill any voids or air gaps within the wall cavity and also fills around all plumbing and electrical in the wall. We first cover the wall in netting and then fill in between each stud cavity. Our recent change to 2x6 exterior walls allows us to achieve an R-21 rating because of the depth and overall density in the stud space throughout our exterior walls. The thicker the insulation you are able to install, the higher the R- value, or the higher thermal resistance of the structure. Higher thermal resistance equals a more energy efficient home.
Another area of your home where we focus on energy efficiency is the type of windows we install. We use a true vinyl window made by Andersen. Vinyl is a great building product as it has a very low heat transfer rating. All of our windows are also Low-E rated. This Low-E rating means that our windows block around 84% of all ultraviolet light from entering the home through the window. Each of these two characteristics help minimize heat from penetrating into the home during the summer and escaping the home in the winter. Again, the more conditioned air you can keep within your home the less your furnace and air conditioner will have to work, thus helping to reduce your monthly energy bills.
A third area where we focus on energy efficiency is our use of Lennox furnaces that are 93% efficient. This means that the furnace uses 93% of the energy it requires to operate to actually heat the home. 7% of the energy used is lost through the combustion process and not utilized in producing heat for the home. The unit uses two pvc pipes that extend from the unit directly to the outdoors. One is an intake to bring fresh air in to fuel the combustion process and the other is to remove the by-products created from the furnace during this same process. This is also another important energy feature in your new home in that the furnace is not using already conditioned air within the home to complete the combustion process, but fresh air from the outside. The more conditioned air that is kept inside the building envelope and the more efficient the furnace, the less the furnace has to run to replenish that conditioned air.
Above are just a few of the many different energy features we incorporate into our new homes. All of these features together help create a more comfortable home as well as a home that is very energy efficient. For more information on our homes, please feel free to call or e-mail us anytime or stop by our models in Saddlebrook or Portal Ridge.