Home' Homes : Homes 2012 Contents 140 SCOOP Homes annual 2012/13
Feature | Green houses
Solar water heating
Cold showers are the old way of being green. Now
you can get your hot water at a low cost – to you
and the environment – courtesy of the sun’s rays.
Depending on the climate, solar water heating can
provide up to 90 per cent of your hot-water needs.
The upfront cost of buying and installing a solar
water heater is higher than electric or gas heaters,
but they heat water at zero cost. With water
heating accounting for 25 per cent of the average
home’s energy use, it’s a great way to reduce your
energy bills and your environmental impact.
This Western Australian home has a 5kW roof-
mounted solar photovoltaic array that provides
all of the home’s energy. Solar-heated water is
provided via evacuated tube technology, which
captures more sunlight than flat panel/plate
systems due to a greater exposed surface area.
The Federal Government’s Renewable Energy
Bonus Scheme for solar hot water closed in June
2012, but households are still eligible for financial
incentives through the Small-scale Renewable
Energy Scheme. See cleanenergyregulator.gov.au
for more information.
C House by Chindarsi Architects, chindarsi.com .
With Australia’s abundance of sunshine, installing
a solar photovoltaic (PV) system on your roof to
convert sunlight into electricity has a swag of benefits.
A typical 1.5KW system saves up to 40 per cent of
your annual power bill , so it will pay for itself in
about nine years. A good place to research this is
cleanenergycouncil.org.au, which offers information
on average daily costs in your city. With four different
government incentives, a range of products and
suppliers, reduced bills and the ability to generate
your own clean electricity, PV systems are an easy
way to add resale value to your home and protect
the environment. The Eco Collection at Swanbourne
in Western Australia proves sustainability and style
aren’t mutually exclusive. It won the 2011 GreenSmart
Energy Efficiency Award and was nominated for the
2012 National Architecture Awards. The group of seven
houses has a six-star energy rating and, along with its
PV system, is expected to use 50 per cent less energy
for heating and cooling than a conventional home.
The Eco Collection at Swanbourne by Mirvac Design,
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