Deep Energy Retrofits
Four steps to taking your home to net-zero
To get your home closer to net zero, Peter outlines four key steps. And, he stresses that you don’t need to do it all at once.
1. Get an energy model done for your home
First, get an energy model done for your home to prioritize the stages of your project. This is critical because it tells you how much insulation you need, how much of a difference windows make, what size of heating system you require and what size of solar system is needed to power your home.
2. Add insulation, air sealing, siding and efficient windows
Then you will probably start with an exterior renovation, adding insulation and triple-paned windows, and then improving your overall air tightness. This will cost about $30,000 for the insulation, improving air tightness and siding and about $15-20,000 for windows.
3. Upgrade your mechanical systems
As your furnace and water heater wear out, replace them with electric heat pump models (furnace and water heater) and add a heat recovery ventilator to provide pre-warmed fresh air in your tightly sealed home. Mechanical upgrades will run about $15,000.
4. Add a solar system
Then add a solar array that is sized big enough to provide all of your electricity needs, which now includes your heating and hot water systems. If you require a larger solar system, about 10 kilowatts, it will run about $30,000.
“All these things can be done individually, so that you don’t have to bite off this massive capital cost right up front.”
“We put 10-kilowatt solar on the garage and that generates about 90 per cent of our annual requirements.”
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