When winter hits suddenly people start wishing they had done more to ensure that their homes were a bit warmer. The heaters come out and the power bills start escalating. As we all know our electricity sources are also less than desirable with power in South Africa being generated by fossil fuels which are not good for the environment.
We thought it might be helpful to look at a handful of winter renovation sensations to warm your home that will be more sustainable, add value and keep you warmer in winter.
Starting from the floors and working our way up, remember that heat rises, and they say if your feet are warm, your whole body is. Look to your floors and consider installing warmer floors like carpets in the bedrooms, or underfloor heating, at least in the main rooms that will be occupied in Winter.
An advantage of underfloor heating is that the heat is spread throughout the room and unknown to many, it is not more expensive than heaters. Once the temperature is set via the thermostat it remains constant and therefore generally more energy efficient. Try to use solar panels as the main source of energy though – also a good long term investment.
Keep the heat in
Windows are like sheets of ice as they are subjected to the cold winter air on the outside. A great way to alleviate this is by installing double glazing which is a great way to keep the heat you generate in. Double doors in particular can be very effective, and never forget the sheer practicality of having lovely warm curtains!
Roofing insulation is also highly effective and there are materials available that work to your advantage in both winter and summer.
Let the sunshine in
Especially in this age of awareness of the environment, the best way to heat a home and contribute to a sustainable environment is through maximising the usage of natural light. Dark rooms that see little sunlight are always the coldest in winter and this can often be solved by installing well-positioned skylights, or for certain walls to be removed so the room becomes part of a warmer room.
Another good winter renovation is to instal large double doors on the sides where the sun shines. There is no warmer place to be than sitting in the sunshine inside a well-insulated room – and the heating cost – zero!
Build a winter braai room
Another great winter renovation is to build a winter braai room. This is an added patio, fully enclosed, but of course able to open up in summer, with a built-in braai. If you add a good-sized patio it doubles as an entertainment room and you will probably find yourself there throughout the year, with the heat from the braai fire being all you need.
You can take advice from your construction expert on exactly where and how to build it to ensure it has maximum warmth in winter and is still cool in summer.
Plan to build a winter-friendly home
With 20 years of combined construction experience, Davel and Lottering Construction have been assisting both residential and industrial clients to create great homes and offices for many years. We always consider every aspect of creating the ultimate home including ensuring that it is warm in winter and cool in summer.
Winter in the Cape is not always the most productive time to build but it is a great time to plan your next project. Talk to us about exactly what you need, and our excellent turnkey building process that takes you from design to landscaping and your completed home will get you started.
Keep safe – and keep warm!