1950s Detached,Sea Mills
Extensive retrofit of family home combining solar PV, EV charging port and LED lighting for extremely low bills and economic transport.
Adults: 2.5 Children: 2
Construction: Cavity brick
Reductions in energy bills have been apparent from the beginning of works at this home in Sea Mills.
The home has very low bills owing to on-site electricity generation from a 2.16 kWp PV array, and extensive insulation. Energy usage has also been reduced with the installation of LED lighting throughout the house and a combi boiler, chosen for its high efficiency.
The building's thermal performance has been improved by upgrading to double glazing, and a high quality exterior bifolding door opening to the garden.
The kitchen also benefits from passive solar gain and increased natural light levels from a Velux window in the west end of the room.
External wall cavities have been filled with carbon beads, and the loft has been highly insulated with 300mm of Rockwool. These measures work together to use energy much more efficiently.
The work done to this property shows how a 1950s home can be retrofitted for greater energy efficiency with a family in mind. Simon and Vicky wanted to exploit the potential of producing their own electricity from a solar PV array and have installed an EV car charging port, served by the solar PV array, and using 7Kw to power their Renault Zoe and cover the daily commute and school run.
The couple used their garage conversion as an opportunity to incorporate high thermal performance into the design, insulating the floor, ceiling and walls to make it as comfortable as possible.
The existing boiler was replaced with a more efficient combi boiler, chosen over solar water as this was a 'weak link' in the efficiency of the building. This is supplemented by a wood-burning stove in the downstairs rooms during colder months. To ensure this heat is retained, the original sashes have been replaced with air-tight double glazed replicas.
A CHEESE energy loss survey on the building also provided a useful blueprint of heat loss points, enabling further thorough draft proofing.
The family have also transitioned to a more sustainable lifestyle – Simon and Vicky adopted a vegan lifestyle years ago, award ‘planet points’ to the children’s eco-friendlier choices and welcome lodgers to share in the efficiency of their home.
Our changes have been driven by our desire to reduce our bills and reliance on external energy, whilst improving the comfort and enjoyment from our home.Homeowner, 2015
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How this house performs
The chart for 2019 case studies shows the household’s annual energy consumption and generation data compared to Ofgem’s Typical Domestic Consumption Values - industry standard values for the annual gas and electricity usage of a typical domestic consumer. For more info click here.
Over 50% of the electricity this house uses is generated by the solar PV array, which also powers their electric car, providing clean and significantly cheaper transport.
External wall cavities have been filled with carbon beads, which can save up to £220 per year. The loft has also been highly insulated with 300mm of Rockwool, which is estimated to save 840kg/CO2 annually.