The energy efficient house is a need of the day. With the energy crisis and global climatic changes, the electric bills are growing every day. To overcome this problem and to save the nature, energy efficient homes are the most preferred constructions. The walls of the house also play an important role in making the house energy efficient.
The role of the walls
The walls are the first and the last defender against the energy loss. The energy loss through walls occurs in four ways:
Inside: The exfiltration is prevented by the walls. This means that the warm air of the room doesn’t escape out during the winters and in the summers the cool air is not escaped.
Outside: The walls prevent the hot and cold air from outside to enter inside the room. The exterior walls prevent infiltration i.e. the cold air doesn’t enter the warm rooms in the winters and the hot air doesn’t enter the rooms in the summers.
The conduction and convection are also prevented by the walls.
The walls also keep away the rains, snow etc away from the house.
These reasons make wall construction an important part of home construction.
Methods of constructing energy efficient walls:
There are many methods by which the walls can be kept energy efficient with a nominal expenditure. The latest technology makes it a very convenient way to make the walls energy efficient.
Optimum Value Engineering (OVE) method use wood only where it is essential thus by reducing the cost as well as saving the environment. This also saves space for proper insulation.
You can use Insulating Concrete Form (ICF) for the exterior walls. These walls are more energy efficient than the normal walls. They are also very strong and can give protection against many natural hazards like tornado. Structured Insulated Panels (SIP) and precast concrete walls are also smart choice. These are well insulated and green options that don’t harm the nature.
For the interiors insulation blankets can be installed. The cellulose insulation, Styrofoam and vapor barriers can prevent heat loss during the winters.
The air leaks near the doors and windows must be sealed by using caulking from inside as well as outside the house. The air leak is one of the most important reasons for energy loss. Sealing can save about 50% of the utility cost.
The R-value of the insulation also matters. The higher the R- value, the better is the insulation capacity. Thus go for the higher R-value. R-20 to R-30 would be a suitable value for the walls.
Thus we can say that walls can save a lot of energy therefore they are important in constructing energy efficient homes.