A passive solar design should be the first consideration made when planning your home.
It involves balancing the function and aesthetics of a home, with the role of the sun on your home. Design and orientation play a significant role in the homes ability to heat and cool itself whilst reducing energy consumption and carbon footprint.
To work well, the design needs to include:
– Window orientation within 30 degrees of true north, clear of any shading
– Thermal mass – concrete, brick, stone or tile, to absorb the heat from the sunlight during winter and absorb the heat from warm hear during summer
– Conduction, convection or radiation to distribute the heat around the house
– Shading systems such as eaves or operable vents and dampers to allow or restrict heat flow, shutters and awnings
It’s also worthwhile considering any wind factor in the area. If you are lucky enough to be building along the coast, you’ll need to consider any coastal breeze likely at your property.