Making Your Home Sustainable: a guide to retrofitting

Front Cover
Scribe Publications, Jan 3, 2012 - Architecture - 144 pages
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In 1991, architect and solar consultant Derek Wrigley moved into a townhouse in Canberra and faced a new design challenge how to retrofit an existing suburban house to use renewable energies rather than fossil fuels. Convinced that building design could do more to achieve sustainability, he developed a series of innovative devices to improve the energy efficiency of the house, and modified the existing design to work harmoniously with the local climate.

The house now generates its own solar electricity, ventilates and cools itself without cost or pollution, and treats its own grey water for irrigating the garden. It quickly attracted visitors who were keen to learn how to apply these sustainable designs to their own homes and wanted to know where to begin.

Making Your Home Sustainable is a practical and easy-to-follow guide for homeowners, builders and architects who are concerned about the effects of climate change and environmental degradation and want to do something about reversing the trend. Derek Wrigley shows how simple modifications to existing homes can help to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and utilise natural rather than imported energies and resources. He clearly explains how to:

Identify retrofitting potential when buying a home; Rationalise energy and water consumption; Provide sunshine in southern rooms, warmth in winter, and cool air in summer; Use ventilation and insulation to reduce the need for artificial heating or cooling; Install a solar hot-water system; Utilise wasted sunlight to heat and illuminate your home; Create a beautiful landscape which also contributes to your household energy efficiency; and *Install reflectors, sunshades, water recycling, heliostats, double-glazing, photovoltaics, water tanks, and other energy-saving and water-saving devices.

With detailed descriptions, 46 photographs, and over 100 diagrams, Making Your Home Sustainable is the retrofitter’s bible an ideal, practical guide for anyone who wants to make their home more comfortable and save money on energy bills while increasing the value of their house and addressing the causes of global warming.

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User Review  - questbird - LibraryThing

A very useful book, showing how existing Australian homes can be retrofitted to make them more sustainable, even autonomous. It contains diagrams and information about grey water, photovoltaics ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Derek F. Wrigley, OAM, LFDIA, FRAIA, ARIBA, DA, studied architecture and town planning at Manchester University in the UK. In 1948 he emigrated to Australia and became a lecturer at NSW University of Technology, where he established the first building-science course in Australia. In addition to teaching, he has practised as an architect, industrial designer, and solar consultant — including designing and building six solar houses in Sydney and Canberra. He was a co-founder of the Industrial Design Council of Australia and was awarded Life Fellowship of the Design Institute of Australia in 1980. He is currently retired from formal practice and is researching applications for solar energy in building and experimenting with low-energy and low-resource retrofitting of existing houses.

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