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9 Principles of Effective Passive Solar Design in and Around the Home

I recall my university days in Geelong, waking up in my humble home one wintery morning. Parched, reaching beside the bed, I grab hold of my glass of water, cold enough to have come straight from the refrigerator! I know I am not alone in this chilling experience where the internal temperature of the house in the middle of winter can be colder than the outside. And the sweltering opposite occurs in summer.

So what is passive solar design, and how can it help to overcome a chilly winter abode or summer hot box? Essentially, solar passive design is about creating an internal environment which maintains a consistent, comfortable temperature throughout the year, utilising the free resources of the sun, wind and a considered design. It can vastly reduce reliance on mechanical heating and cooling, not to mention reduce your energy bills.

Designing for your location and climate and creating a thermally comfortable interior does not have to be expensive either. Australia has eight different climate zones and, as such, architecture should not be generic but designed to suit each zone. Today, I will share with you the basic principles of passive solar design and how they could make a difference to your comfort inside the home.

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