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Our determination to develop our home to incorporate low energy principles grew from an awareness about environmental issues. We had attempted to “green” our former home but were limited in what we could achieve. Our new home, with its south facing and spacious rear garden, allowed us to introduce some of the ideas that we had read and heard about. Using Manchester Energy Saving Trust we achieved our ambitions without being experts.
We have accepted the research carried out by climate change scientists and fear for the future of the planet. We can do little at a global level and belong to the relevant organisations at a national level. The next best thing is to act as environmentally friendly as possible; and then show what we have achieved to anyone that is interested.
A 1930’s detached 4 bedroom house. Brick and tile roof construction. Recently extended to low standard. Large south facing rear garden.
Extended both sides to create a garage, utility room, toilet and small gym on the east side and on the west side, two bedrooms, bathroom, dining room and study.
Added P.V. panels, Air Source Heat Pump, Rainwater Harvesting System, land drains and sump. Improved insulation by adding thermal blocks and thermal backed insulted plasterboard to new external walls, increased loft insulation to 270 mm, fitted insulation between joists on suspended floor, replaced windows with double or triple glazing, replaced front door with insulated stronger model, fitted insulated garage door.
The entire house is now kept at a constant minimum temperature of 18 degrees, with the facility to increase as required and a gas fire in one room for extra instant heat. Hot water is constantly available and two showers can operate simultaneously. The house has 6 bedrooms and, currently, 3 occupants.The fuel bill is £1725 p.a. and income from Feed in Tariff is an average £1598 p.a. A by – product of the Air Source Heat pump is that the garage is kept hot by heat loss from the compressor pumps and a clothes drying rack has been installed that allows indoor drying during cold and wet weather; the tumble dryer is now redundant. Water bill is £141 p.a. because 800 litres of toilet flush water is saved each week and large garden can be watered at no cost. The land drains have overcome garden flooding caused by a clay base and created a sump for extra garden watering.
Each aspect fits together to create an environmental and personal benefit.