Most people are aware of their carbon footprint these days, and will go to great lengths to reduce it. Your bathroom renovation is a fantastic opportunity. You can create a modern, relaxing room and reduce your fuel bills at the same time. If you are in any doubt, read on. The things that you can do to reduce the energy consumed in this room might surprise you.
Bathroom designs are all variations on a theme and rely on the size of the budget you have available. Let’s take a look at a few ideas for the room.
- You must choose a suite that is sympathetic to the size of the room. We would all love a huge bathtub, but it isn’t practical in most rooms. You must leave plenty of space for unique vanities and mirrors as well as a shower cubicle.
- You must tile the walls and floor. It is a feature of all the best bathrooms in the magazines. It is also a practical solution for wet areas. Tiles with intricate patterns are not in style, and they can make the room seem smaller than it is. Avoid them at all costs.
- You must use modern LED light bulbs and fittings to illuminate the room. They are one of the biggest steps forward in lighting that science has ever produced. Mount a dimmer switch outside the bathroom so that you can control the lights as your mood changes.
- Use a toilet with a half flush facility. Though water is not in short supply, you could save money if you have a meter.
Much of our energy consumption goes towards making hot water. If you are handy with DIY, you could make a solar water heater that will cut your fuel bills. If your hot water system uses a combination boiler, it is an easy job.
To build a solar water heater you will need:
- Timber in various sizes.
- Glass for the front of the box.
- A copper hot water cylinder.
- Black paint for the cylinder.
- Loft insulation.
- Copper pipes.
- Compression Joints.
It is an easy system. Cold water goes into your boiler under mains pressure. Your job is to divert the pipes, so it runs through the solar heater first. Even if it only raises it by a few degrees you will save gas.
Paint the cylinder and build a box to house it. Pack insulation against the sides of the box to prevent heat escape.
Run the pipe for the cold feed into the bottom of the cylinder, and the feed to the boiler out of the top.
Fit glass over the front of the box to enclose the cylinder.
The water in the cylinder will get hot if the sun is strong, but even on a dull day the temperature will rise by a few degrees. If the water is already warm when it enters the boiler, it doesn’t need to work as hard as it would if the water were cold. You must position the unit where it gets the most sun throughout the day.
I hope you have found my idea interesting. I run a solar heater, and it works well for me. You never know until you try. Look out for more of my tips for reducing your carbon footprint. We all sleep better when our conscience is clear.