Efficiency from the Outside
Making a building more energy efficient can start with the exterior. Providing the perfect temperature any time of the year can use a lot of energy. In fact, the building envelope – the thermal barrier between the interior of the building and the outdoor environment – determines the amount of energy necessary to maintain a comfortable indoor environment year round. Internal heating and cooling loss can be controlled with improved exterior solutions to create a comfortable interior environment, and reduce energy use up to 40 percent.
The roof of a building is a major factor in energy consumption and building envelope problems. It sees the most wear from the elements, and during hot summer days, can have your air conditioner working double time to keep your building cool.
A high-performance roof can be a powerful asset in reducing energy consumption. Cool roofs are designed to reflect more sunlight and absorb less heat than a standard roof, so they are great for nearly any type of building. By installing a cool roof, you can decrease air conditioning needs, improve indoor comfort, lower peak electricity demand, and decrease roof temperature – which can extend the service life of the roof.
The majority of insulation in buildings is for thermal purposes, but could be adding to the cost of energy use. Insulation provides resistance to heat flow, reducing the amount of energy needed to keep a building warm or cool during the winter and summer months. Adding insulation strategically will improve the efficiency of a building.
The great thing about energy efficient insulation is that it begins working from the time it’s installed, lasts for the life of the building, and does not require further maintenance. There are a variety of insulation types available, so determining the type that provides the maximum amount of efficiency is important. Efficient insulation can result in year-round comfort, eliminates condensation on walls, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
Windows provide a great way for businesses to achieve natural light and warmth, but can negatively impact a building’s energy efficiency and thermal envelope. Replacing and tinting windows can improve comfort, create less condensation, and lower HVAC costs.
The performance of windows can be measured in a number of ways including insulating value, heat gain from solar radiation, and infiltration. Once applied, window tinting can reduce solar heat gain up to 79 percent and prevent interior fading.