Interior and exterior design is embracing green technology and energy-efficient trends fast and hard. Even our Color of the Year—vibrant ‘Living Coral’ reminds us of the importance of nature conservation! So, if you want to finally embrace the green life and give the planet a fighting chance, here are some of the major energy efficiency home trends that will mark 2019.
1. Overall Energy Star rating
Energy Star is truly the main player in energy conservation circles. Products with their label undergo rigorous testing and products that are being endorsed are chosen very carefully. Equipping your home with Energy Star appliances and fixtures is an amazing green move, but the new trend is to receive this coveted certificate for the entire house. Homebuilders and homeowners who follow Energy Star criteria for insulation, HVAC systems, water management, lighting, appliances and electronics can get the endorsement from this organization.
2. Energy-efficient windows
Low-emissivity or Low-E windows can make a huge difference for your home. They will not only save you money with their energy-conservation properties but also make your home a much more pleasant place to live. These windows are coated with a thin layer of metal that blocks the long energy wavelengths and lets short energy wavelengths pass. This means they can minimize the amount of harmful UV light and infrared light that can pass through, while allowing large amounts of visible light inside. Thanks to Low-E windows, you can reduce cooling and artificial lighting use and prevent UV damage to your furniture.
3. Cool roofing
Most roofs in the world are dark colored. This might not seem like a problem, but the dark surface attracts the sunlight which can increase the temperature of the entire home, increase the use of air conditioning and reduce the life span of the roofing materials. Luckily, cool roofs are slowly gaining on popularity and will hopefully have a boom in 2019. These roofs are designed to reflect the sun away from the home and reduce the heat transfer. Additionally, they can affect more than just a single building. A group of cool roofs can help reduce the urban heat island effect and lower the temperature in busy city areas providing a more pleasant environment of living and working.
4. Solar panels
Solar panels are cheaper, more efficient and available from year to year, so it’s not a surprise that they are a green trend that is not disappearing. As the technology is improving, more and more people are investing in solar panels and reaping the benefits. Even small solar panel systems will make a difference, but in order to really minimize your dependence on the grid and become more sustainable, feel free to go big. For instance, 10kW solar systems by Skylight Energy can produce a notable amount of clean energy and even diminish your electricity bill. Plus, even a big system like this will not disturb the look of your home. The slick design of the panels looks very modern and it will certainly increase the value of your property.
5. Water-conservation fixtures
Water conservation trend will still go strong in 2019. Water is our most precious resource that needs to be preserved for the sake of all beings on the planet, so there are new ways of water-saving additions to modern homes. Many people are integrating gray water systems into their households that can capture and store rainwater and save it for future use. There are also smart irrigation systems, efficient water-filtration systems and low-flow toilets, faucets and showerheads.
6. Smart water meters
Smart thermostats are super popular and widely available today. However, there’s a new player in the market of smart home additions that can bring many green benefits to your home—smart water meters. These gadgets give homeowners the knowledge of water conservation, alert them to any inadequacies of their utility company, locate irregular water patterns and assist with household water management. They can even send important water information to the water company in order to receive better water usage data. Smart water meters can also save you money by identifying the best times during the day to take a shower, start the dishwasher and run the washing machine.
7. LEDs still rule
Energy-efficient lighting is something that will never be outdated. Regular light bulbs provide the house with light, but they also give off a lot of heat which can increase the temperature of your interior. However, LEDs not only produce no heat but also use only 20% of the energy of traditional light bulbs. Plus, they have a much longer life span. Good LEDs will last you up to 25 times longer than regular bulbs, which means less energy waste on production and fewer store trips.
No matter if you opt for a small change like replacing your regular lighting with energy-saving LEDs or choose to go big with solar panels and cool roofing, your home will be a much trendier and eco-friendlier place. You’ll have an efficient home that’s stylish, comfortable and cost-effective and provides a wonderful example to the future generation. These are the trends that we should endorse and promote with all our hearts!