Saving energy at home

What is a home retrofit?

Retrofitting your home

A home retrofit aims to improve the energy efficiency of a house or flat by making it easier to heat up and better at retaining heat. It also looks at renewable energy options to heat and power your home, which could mean significant savings on energy bills over the long-term and help you live more sustainably.

What are the benefits of a home retrofit?

Lower energy bills

The heating system of a poorly insulated home will have to work harder and could cost you more to run. So, reducing how much heat your home wastes makes sense for your pocket and the planet.

A warmer, energy-efficient home

Improving insulation and reducing heat loss will not only make it easier to heat your home but could also help to keep it warmer for longer.

A healthier environment

Taking steps to reduce or remove cold, damp and mould will help improve air quality in your home and could have a positive impact your health too.

How to retrofit your home

If your home loses heat through draughts or poor insulation, it's wasting energy.  So, starting with the basics to make your home more comfortable and easier to keep warm is a step in the right direction, before investing in bigger changes.

The Centre for Sustainable Energy (2022) recommends a 3 step process for a home retrofit: (1) Reduce the energy your home uses (2) Improve its energy efficiency and then (3) Look at renawable alternatives to heat and power your home.

Consider a three-phased approach

1. Conserve energy

1. Reduce the energy your home uses

You could seek the help of an energy efficiency professional to get advice on how your home uses energy and where it loses heat. Recommendations could include things as simple as closing curtains to retain heat or using your heating system controls more effectively. Small actions could add up to save energy and money.

2. Energy efficiency

2. Improve the fabric of the building

A 'fabric first' approach is not about changing carpets or curtains but upgrading things like insulation (in walls, lofts or floors), windows and doors in your home. There are many ways you could do this and it will depend on the type of house you have. The size, age and year it was built will play a factor in which measures are available to you.

3. Renewable energy

3. Add low carbon heating

The first two stages will help you to cut down the amount of energy your homes needs. It will also help to prepare your home if you decide to install a renewable energy system, as it could also be a waste of money to install a new heating system if your home can’t retain heat well.

Top questions about home retrofits answered

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