Heating and cooling - Home Design Guide

Jul 11, 2022
Belmore 300 Kitchen Low Res 4 1

Here in Victoria, we contend with weather extremes, with both very warm and cold weather So, it is essential to consider how you will retain heat in colder weather, and keep your home cool during warmer weather, well before your new home build commences.

Tip Number 1: How can you harness the natural elements (the SUN!) to warm your home in winter AND keep things cool in summer? This is the most efficient heating and cooling, and best of all, it’s free.

Tip Number 2: Once you have ensured the sun is helping you out, the next step is to consider other elements both inside and outside your new home to deliver optimum and most economical temperature regulation. Read on to discover the most economical way of heating a house.

On average, we find temperature loss occurs differently from different parts of your home as depicted below.

One thing to note is every house and block of land is different, so you need to assess your unique situation to achieve the best results.

We know understanding the most efficient heating and cooling for a home can be an overwhelming task, so we equip our New Home Advisors to be heating and cooling experts. Visit one of our display homes for an individual assessment of your home and location.

Passive Heating Design

Passive heating is the cheapest (it’s free once set up) and most efficient way to heat a house. It involves trapping heat from the sun inside your home. Facing your living areas north is the most important principle to adhere to. As the Australian sun is on a norther arc and rises in the east and sets in the west, a north facing living area will receive sunlight all day long (read our blog on orientation for a deeper understanding). House designs that exhibit an open plan kitchen, living and dining areas, heat from the sun can be distributed throughout, providing a warm house design throughout the year.

Warm Home Design Tips

Once you have nailed the location of the sun for your new home, you will need to think about how to trap that warmth inside your home to make the most of it.

1. Double Glazed Windows

Typically, windows (glass and frames) are the biggest source of heat loss or gain (10-35%), so it is key to make the right selection for your new home.

Double glazing windows and doors have two glass panes bonded together by a spacer and separated by a gap. This provides a thermal barrier between your home and the outside environment, reducing heat loss.

An added bonus is the noise reduction achieved through double glazing. Traffic, airplanes and the noise from any entertaining neighbours can be reduced up to 60% compared to a single glazed home. Plus, condensation is reduced, decreasing your chances of damp and mould.

2. Home Insulation

Now that your windows are sorted, the next step is to assess heat loss through the walls and roof. Insulation is your answer here. A fully insulated home compared to a non-insulated home can reduce the cost of heating and cooling a home by around 40 to 50%.

3. Curtains for Warmth

While playing a big part in the décor and theme of your home, window coverings are another way to regulate heat without any ongoing energy costs. There are countless options for you here, each with different properties when it comes to warmth. Curtains and shutters generally deliver the best temperature control compared to roller blinds.

4. Reduce draughts

Open spaces are an easy way to lose heat. This is particularly an issue in double storey homes with heat escaping up stairways. To combat this, we recommend adding doors to separate and cut off specific rooms so that heat can be trapped rather than flowing around the whole house.

5. Paid Heating

To survive the chilly winter days, don’t forget your heating system. If you properly consider all the elements we have run through, the heat generated that you pay for will be better maintained within your house. The most efficient temperature to keep your house at is between 18°C to 20°C. Every 1°C higher will add around 10% to your annual heating bill.

There are lots of considerations to help your home stay as warm as possible. Our New Home Advisors will guide you through your selection process ensuring your home is kitted out so you can enjoy the suns warmth all year round.

Passive Cooling Home Tips

Passive cooling reduces heat gain and increases heat loss. A summer essential that will reduce your reliance on air conditioning. By adhering to a few key principles, you can increase air movement and shade key areas from direct sun light, here are our tips on how to keep a house cool.

How to keep the house cool?

1. Position Windows and Glazing

As you have just read, double glazing does wonders to keep homes warm in winter. Double glazing also helps to keep your home cooler in summer. This doesn’t mean that you need to spend a fortune double glazing every window, but those that get a heap of direct sunlight need to be considered. As outlined earlier, this would specifically refer to windows that are north facing. Double glazing is one option, there are alternate options that can deliver similar benefits such as, Low Emissivity (E) glass or a combination of both.

Low E glass has a very thin coating on one side of the glass to reduce heat and cold transfer.

Finally, eaves are the edges of a roof that overhang/project beyond the side of a home (as depicted below).

Most new house designs do feature eaves on the front of a home. However, you may notice the other sides of a home have no eaves i.e. the sides and back of a home. As has been outlined, the eaves are especially important on your northern face/elevation, as noted this should be where your living areas are. Eaves, not only increase the curb appeal of your home, but they also play a part in cooling by regulating the amount of sun hitting your windows on other parts of your home. Do not assume if you see an image with eaves on the front of your home, that they continue around the perimeter of your home. Make sure you confirm and clarify which sides of the home have eaves or not. If your dream home design does not have eaves on certain parts, do not despair as this is an extra you can add to your home design. The smarts don’t stop there, eaves are specially designed to block summer sun but let winter sun into your home, helping you out all year round.

2. Thermal Mass Materials

Several materials built into a home have a high thermal mass, including tiles, concrete and bricks. This means they absorb and hold heat. Lucky for you, all our homes and in particular our COLORBOND® roofs have built in technology, specially designed not to hold the summer heat. All colours of COLORBOND® steel roofs (excluding Hight Sky®) feature Thermatech® solar reflectance technology. Thermatech® technology is designed to reflect more of the sun's heat on hot, sunny days, which can mean less dependence on air-conditioning, plus reduced heat stress for your roof.

3. Effective Insulation

We have touched on insulation for winter, but it plays an important part in the summertime as well. With countless insulation types, your location will ultimately determine the most effective insulation for your new home. Once installed insulation acts like an eski, trapping cool air inside your home and preventing hot air from entering, a very efficient home cooling system.

Keeping a house cool or keeping a house warm are easy, however creating a balance so you home is comfortable throughout summer and winter is more complicated. House heating and cooling options are countless, and our New Home Advisors are professionally trained and have years of experience achieving balance in new homes. Visit one of our display homes around the state for region specific advice from our local teams. Australia is a big country, so requirements will differ slightly in different areas.

Enquire about JG King Homes

Submit an enquiry and a home consultant will be in touch to help start your new home journey

We can also book a private tour or appointment at one of our Display Homes, or take you on a personal online video tour.

Call 1300 545 464 for more information