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Energy-Efficient Home Design: Building a Sustainable Future

A contemporary house with solar panels on the rooftop, harnessing renewable energy for sustainable living.

If you’ve found yourself Googling “house remodel exterior” recently, now is the time to look at ways to make it sustainable and energy efficient

When you create an energy-efficient and sustainable house, you benefit the environment and yourself in various ways. A sustainable home means creating a healthier spacer for yourself, your family members, your pets, your community, and your wallet. If you’re looking into replacement windows and siding, investing in a sustainable and energy-efficient option is a great idea.

A sustainable property is one that is built or modified using quality systems to conserve and optimize resources and lead to a longer lifespan. These properties are made with high-performing and low-impact materials that are efficient in terms of manufacturing, shipping, installation, and use. Moreover, because these top-tier materials and systems last longer and require less maintenance, they produce less waste (both physical waste and time waste).

Energy efficiency is essential to home sustainability across the life of your house. Today, we’re looking into what makes a property sustainable, what you can do to retrofit sustainability into your existing house, and how to build a sustainable home when dealing with new construction.

Continue reading to learn more below.

House remodel exterior: Consider every detail

Whether you’re remodeling your home or building a new property, the whole deal involves many moving parts. When you add sustainability to the table, it might make the process feel even more overwhelming. The cool thing about building a new house or remodeling your current property with sustainability in mind is that there are things to include all along the way.

Building a sustainable future starts at the beginning and is woven throughout the entire process. Here are the details to remember:

  • Building materials and methods
  • Decorating choices
  • Insulation options
  • Windows and skylights
  • Siding and other exterior materials
  • Roofing and vinyl fascia installation
  • Heat, ventilation, and air conditioning systems
  • Interior and exterior lighting
  • Appliances
  • Plumbing fixtures
  • Use of integrated smart systems
  • Energy generation from solar and wind
  • Regular maintenance, conservation, and green cleaning habits

5 ways to build an energy-efficient home

If you want a sustainable house, there are things you can do to make it more energy efficient during the building or remodeling process and after. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Invest in energy-efficient appliances — Next to your HVAC system, appliances are the next biggest energy consumers in the home. A lot of homeowners forget that they basically have two prices: the cost of buying them and the cost of operating them. When you buy an energy-efficient option, you significantly cut the cost of using them, which often, down the road, exceeds the cost of buying them.

    The appliance buying process is overwhelming for many, so many homeowners opt to utilize Energy Star’s product guide to help navigate and make energy-efficient and sustainable choices.
  2. Opt for high-quality windows — Energy efficiency is one of the most important considerations when shopping for a sustainable home. There are many energy efficient features and benefits to think about when researching which windows you want, such as cost, comfort, energy savings, and environmental sustainability.
  3. Whether you’re updating your existing windows or selecting ones for your new build, many benefits come with choosing efficient windows, such as improved comfort, increased home value, better for the environment, and lower utility bills (thus saving you money).

When it comes to energy efficiency, there are two components to consider:

  • Frame materials — A window frame’s materials play a huge role in maximizing energy efficiency. Common types of materials include vinyl, wood, fiberglass, and composite. The costs and savings will vary based on the material and manufacturing process.
  • Glass panes — Double-pane glass, also called dual-pane glass, inherently performs better than single-pane glass in terms of energy efficiency. The space between panes acts as an insulation layer, protecting the home from heat or cold. Low-E glass is superior for conserving energy because it reduces infrared and ultraviolet light penetration, limiting heat transfer. Triple-pane glass is even better.
  • Consider passive solar design — Many homeowners love passive solar design because it captures energy from the sun to help heat and cool their homes. Using no electrical or mechanical equipment, passive solar design relies on building materials that absorb, reflect, or transmit the sun’s radiation. 
    Interior spaces are designed to facilitate the movement of the sun-heated air without using fans. A passive property requires less energy to heat and cool, resulting in a sustainable future.
  1. Select energy-efficient siding — Your exterior home material is one of the first defenses against the elements. Popular options include brick, wood, and siding. Siding is one of the best options, thanks to its low-maintenance nature, durability, and affordability. Another major perk is that energy-efficient siding and vinyl fascia installation can help homeowners build a sustainable future by lowering their energy consumption, thus reducing energy costs and improving energy efficiency.

    Energy-efficient siding improves your home’s insulation. It protects the structure from harsh elements, like the sun, snow, rain, and wind, helping maintain its internal temperature by preventing moisture and air leaks. This important layer of insulation makes your property more comfortable, keeps your bill costs down, and improves your home’s resale value.

    The thermal resistance of insulation materials is measured through R-value. The R-value indicates how well it will retain heat per inch of depth. For example, a thin foam insulation panel might have a high R-value, but offer a similar level of protection as a thick panel with a low R-value. The higher the R-value, the more effectively the material will insulate your property. Energy-efficient siding will have a good R-value rating.
  1. Set up natural ventilation — Setting up your home to enjoy natural ventilation improves indoor environmental quality (IEQ) by boosting air quality and regulating the indoor climate. Specific strategies to achieve natural ventilation include placing louvers and vents in your structure’s lower and upper sections, allowing fresh, clean, and cool air to enter, and letting warm air escape.

    Natural ventilation also cools indoor air by exhausting warm air from inside your home. It involves careful and thoughtful placement of windows, the geometry of the structure, and the use of cupolas and other features that will exhaust hot air near the peak of the roof.

House remodel exterior: The pros at Mountain States Windows & Siding are here to help!

Whether you’re looking into house remodel exterior options or are in the new-build process, Mountain States Windows & Siding professionals are here to help you with your energy-efficient home design.

There’s no denying that even the highest quality, most energy efficient windows and siding are only as good as the team who installs them. For this reason, the trusted and experienced team at Mountain States is devoted to providing quality service and making the upgrade and installation process for your replacement windows and siding the best home improvement project you’ve embarked upon.

In our decades of service, we’ve learned that the highest quality experiences are thanks to the details, which is why we put countless hours into our attention to detail, craftsmanship, and hard work into all our projects. Without our top-tier experience, superior tools and equipment, expert knowledge, and an unbelievable amount of time, our team wouldn’t amount to much.

Thankfully, our highly qualified and trusted team has years of industry experience and is ready to take on any home remodeling project (yes, we even take on kitchen and bathroom renovation jobs!). When you choose Mountain States, you choose the best.

At Mountain States, we always use the highest-quality products on the market and will always go above and beyond to give you the results you deserve. New windows, siding, and vinyl fascia installation will boost curb appeal, improve value, eliminate unwanted noise and intruders, and keep your home performing optimally, efficiently, and sustainably.

We serve residential and commercial properties throughout Salt Lake, American Fork, West Valley, Orem, Park City, and other surrounding areas across the Wasatch Front and Back. Contact Mountain States Windows & Siding to learn more about replacement windows and siding today.

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