How sustainability influences the architectural design process
With energy costs vastly rising, it’s a top priority to reduce energy consumption and costs when designing your dream home. Sustainable building design lowers energy costs and reduces our carbon footprint. Every new home should be completed through a sustainable lens, focusing on building efficiency through sustainable design techniques and specifications.
We make it our priority to incorporate sustainable practices in all the work we do.
Adhering to energy codes ensures that homes and buildings reduce their energy consumption and waste, lower utility costs, and improve the overall comfort of the occupant.
Energy codes include several components, such as wall and ceiling insulation requirements, window and door performance, HVAC ventilation, equipment efficiency and lighting fixtures, to name a few. Complying with these specific energy codes makes sure that at least minimum sustainable energy standards are being kept up with.
Here are a few ways that energy reduction strategies can be incorporated into home design.
Wall and Ceiling Insulation
Insulation is an essential part of the building process as it protects the home and its occupants against the elements, outside noise and keeps warmth inside or outside of the building envelope, depending on the time of year and your building location. Architects should design walls, roofs, and other components with proper insulation details in mind. By using good insulating techniques, energy costs and usage can be drastically reduced.
Window and Door Specifications
When looking at windows and doors, it’s best to select units that are fabricated with recycled or responsibly harvested materials. Doors and windows should also be oriented appropriately to accommodate or shield interior spaces from direct sunlight, depending on the time of year, as well as utilize natural breezes during temperate months. We refer to this as “passive solar design.” You can also utilize a more modern style, which usually lends itself to passive solar design better than traditional style architecture. Passive solar design helps to reduce energy costs naturally as the home will be planned to absorb the sun’s heat energy, which is beneficial during the winter months. As the seasons change and begin to get warmer, shading devices keep the home cool.
LED lights are now one of the easiest energy savers in new homes. LED bulbs and fixtures use very small amounts of electricity to produce the same amount of light as their incandescent predecessors. Great progress has been made in the quality of light that LED lights produce. With the right fixture selection, LED lighting can produce a full spectrum of colors to allow you to change the color with the time of day, activity in the space or mood.
Rainwater and Greywater Collection
Rainwater and greywater collection are water-saving resources that are often forgotten about. Rainwater harvesting captures, diverts and stores rainwater for later use. Greywater is the water that you use during the day that does not include bodily waste. The water that comes from showers, dishwashers, and washing machines is considered greywater. This water can be diverted and stored for use in irrigation systems and toilets. When designing a space, it’s best to discuss what options create opportunities for better water management.
Our team is dedicated to incorporating sustainability practices with distinguished creativity into all the work we do.