As the Chinese proverb says, “If we don’t change our direction, we are likely to end up where we are headed”, and in humanity’s case where “we are headed” is clearly some type of ecological, and social disaster. Mankind has written its own nemesis by its greedy exploits. Now, to save the only home, the Earth, man is going green; right from companies, to cars, to fuel, to skin care, clothing, and even the very house. Yes, eco- homes or green homes as they are popularly known are the next level in ecologically affordable housing. Green homes reduce adverse environmental impact, and bear a lighter carbon footprint. Green homes integrate different aspects of the environment, and increase resource efficiency, thus reducing the cost of running a home, ensuring sustainability, and keeping the occupants healthy. The raison d'être of building green homes is that it’s payback time. It's payback time because of foolish and utterly self-centric ways in which the man has compromised not only on his survival, but also on the survival of all the other living beings in this planet. And, now man can no longer ignore the impact and consequences of his lifestyle that have jeopardized so many ecosystems. Green homes are not only the need of the hour but also a resort to survival. The best part with green homes is that they also come in ultra stylish and ultra sleek modern designs. Read on to learn more about green home designs.
Ideas For Green Home Designs
Eco Friendly Roof
Eco friendly roofing basically means covering the roof of the structure completely or partially with vegetation. These roofs are built by first, water-proofing the RCC slab to protect it from dampness or leakage, and then planting the vegetation on top of it. Root barriers, drainage, and irrigation systems are also integrated into it. These roofs help keep the temperature down, especially in urban areas, and improve the environment, besides reducing the pollution. What ’s more, green roofs contribute to the aesthetic beauty of your homes.
One of the classic ways of reducing excessive use of energy is the use of natural lighting in the green home designs. This is achieved by constructing glass windows and doors. You can save on energy bills by using natural lighting. In winters, use solar energy from natural lighting to heat up your rooms, and in summer use blinds, curtains, and shades to keep away sunlight, and cut down on your cooling costs. And remember windows should be installed in the direction of the flow of natural air, and exhaust fans on the opposite direction to remove out the polluted air, and minimize the energy bills.
Using eco-friendly, reusable materials, as well as, the non-toxic furnishings and leftovers are some of the standard ways of applying the concept of recycling in green home designs.
Energy Efficient Appliances
Using energy efficient appliances, which use alternative sources of energy like solar panels, solar cookers, sun water heater etc. save a lot of electricity.
Water Conserving Devices
Install low flush water systems, and replace old toilets with newer water efficient models to conserve energy.
This is probably one of the best ways to conserve energy by minimizing the effect of weather, and the changing seasons. Insulate the walls and roofs using insulating materials, so that the heat transfer between the outside and inside environment is reduced.
Trees not only provide shade and aesthetic beauty but they also keep the air fresh and healthy. Besides, trees also affect the weather but in a positive way. So, grow more plants, which require less water, and are perennial in nature because this reduces the costs of re-plantation.
Use Low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC)
Low VOC, like Low VOC paints, cleaning products etc. keep the air inside the house healthy. This is because high volatile organic compounds release urea formaldehyde, which is harmful to health. For the same reason, do not use particleboards, ceramic tiles, and wallpapers.
Environment Friendly Kitchen
To make your kitchen environment friendly do not use any toxic cleaning materials. Use energy conserving appliances, install quality chimneys, make use of water purifiers, and proper window, and exhaust ventilation. Do not use particleboard and petroleum based plastic.
Make your bedroom green by using organic materials for your mattresses, pillows, bed sheets, curtains, and other articles. For building the bed, reuse good quality natural hardwood rather than particle or fiberboard. Use room dividers and rugs made from bamboo. You can also use cane and bamboo beds, chairs, and tables.