For everyone in Canada, residential energy efficiency is an important concern. As homes lower their dependence on power, the demand for non-renewable energy sources decreases. Less reliance on fossil fuels translates into less pollution, diminished climate change, and a smaller environmental footprint. More importantly, reducing the amount of electricity and gas we use in our homes brings down our utility costs! If you’d like to find out what the future has in store for home heating and cooling, check out the information below.
The Ministry of Energy has issued some encouraging news regarding upcoming technologies that could make a big difference in energy efficiency in Canadian homes. Here are some of the highlights:
Smarter Homes Grow More Efficient
While making the equipment that heats and cools our homes more efficient is important, we can also get a lot of mileage out of making the electronics that control that equipment more intelligent. Smart thermostats exercise an impressive level of control over your home’s HVAC system, keeping temperatures throughout your home comfortable while eliminating wasted energy. Now the government says we can expect to see more sensitive and intelligent sensor systems in the next generation of smart controls, giving our HVAC systems even greater control over their output.
Heat Pumps Save Energy
The popularity of heat pumps is growing in the residential market. Homeowners love how they provide efficient heating with much less power than ordinary electric resistance heaters. This same technology is coming to gas heating in the near future, too, and gas heat pumps equipped with low-emission burners are likely to be both economical and highly efficient.
Windows Minimizing Solar Energy
The home envelope needs to be well insulated at all points, including windows, in order to heat and cool the home efficiently. At Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, researchers are developing new technologies that not only will allow less air to escape, windows of the future will also minimize solar energy into the home with automatic sensors and shades.
More Powerful Insulation
Of course, insulation has always been a key part of an energy-efficient home. The latest forms of foam insulation offer amazing insulation efficiency, packing even more thermal resistance into smaller volumes. The next generation of insulation materials is environmentally friendly, too, reducing the impact of upgrading the home.
Energy efficiency is about more than just the equipment and insulation that goes inside of your home. Roofing materials can actually do a great deal to make a home more efficient by reflecting more of the sun’s energy on warm days.
Take Your Own Steps Towards Residential Energy Efficiency
While a lot of the technology described above hasn’t filtered its way down to the residential market yet, there is still a lot of great, highly efficient heating and cooling equipment already available. If your own home is ready for a newer, more efficient air conditioner or furnace, speak to a local HVAC professional about upgrading now.