A Closer Look at Energy-Efficient Remodeling Solutions Apr 16th, 2013 If you’re a homeowner looking for green solutions while putting together the scope of your next home remodeling project, the Energy Star program is always a good place to start. If you’re not familiar with it, the Energy Star program is a voluntary program overseen by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that includes specific products and initiatives in a tax credit incentive for green improvements to a primary residence. These independently-rated Energy Star products must lower the consumption of energy without sacrificing the functionality or features of the item. While not all Energy Star products qualify for tax credits, there are several that are eligible when purchased through December 31, 2013. Four energy-efficient product groups that are notable for home remodeling projects in San Diego and the surrounding area are non-solar hot water heaters; heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems; metal and asphalt roofs; and windows and doors. If you’re considering making eco-friendly changes in any of these areas, you might want to look at the options available in Energy Star products with your design-build remodeling team. Hot Water Heaters A new hot water heater might be on the horizon for your laundry room and bathroom remodeling projects, since most hot water heaters last from 10 to 25 years, depending on the models. According to EnergyStar.com statistics, they also consume between 14 and 25 percent of your home’s energy. Energy-efficient models include gas, propane and oil water heaters and electric heat pump water heaters with a high thermal efficiency rating. HVAC There are several green options in HVAC products today, including air source heat pumps, central air conditioning (CAC), and natural or propane gas or oil furnace systems which use combustion to generate heat. Windows and Doors New or replacement windows, doors and skylights with the Energy Star label can reduce the energy efficiency of your home. Windows and doors in new home additions and in existing framework can also qualify for tax credits. Roofs If your roof needs to be replaced or you’re putting in an addition on your San Diego home, you’ll find that certain roofing products reflect solar rays more efficiently, which can lower the surface temperature of your roof by up to 100 degrees, according to Energy Star statistics. This translates to less heat transferred into your home. Look for metal roofing with “appropriate pigmented coatings” and asphalt roofing with “appropriate cooling granules.” If you’re interested in eco-friendly products to include in remodeling projects for your San Diego room additions or renovations, be sure to discuss it with your design build team. There are ways to go greener in almost every change you make.