Top tips for energy efficiency
A BADLY maintained building cannot be an energy-efficient building.
Research by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) has shown that, no matter the construction, material or age of a building, poor maintenance will build up problems.
All it takes is some simple steps – such as spending a few pounds to mend a leaky gutter – to save many hundreds, and possibly thousands, of pounds in the long run.
Here are some of the SPAB's top tips:
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Repair your building – Fix a leaky roof or blocked gutter and find the source of a damp problem. A dry house is a warmer house.
Understand your building – Allow surfaces to breathe and work with the original building construction and plan form.
Understand how much your building costs to run – Do you know how much gas, electricity and water you use?
Understand your behaviour in the building – Do you have to heat the whole house and for what periods?
Install efficient heating system and controls – Design your heating system around how you use the building and make the controls as user-friendly as possible.
Control air infiltration – Keep on top of internal decoration, carpet suspended timber floors, hang thick curtains, install window draught-proofing, secondary glazing or wooden shutters.
Get your insulation right – By all means insulate lofts and insulate underfloor voids, but remember not to block or impede ventilation in those areas, as this can lead to problems.
Ventilate moisture away at source – Remove moisture from bathrooms and kitchens before it circulates and condenses.
For more information on maintaining your buildings, visit www.spab.org.uk or www.maintainyourbuilding.org.uk