Thinking about building a home in Albuquerque, but not sure if a warm climate is ideal?
Don’t worry—it is.
Green built homes are all about energy conservation, and it’s well known that homes in climates that require more heating than cooling tend to use more energy and cost more money. Why? Two reasons.
Warm Climates Are Better Than Cool Climates
The first is that the difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures in warm climates tends to be smaller than that in cold climates. For example, if the weather on a hot summer day in Albuquerque is 95 degrees and you’re cooling your home to 75 degrees, the temperature difference is only 20 degrees. However, if you’re located in a cold climate and it’s 30 degrees outside while you’re heating your home to 70 degrees, that’s a difference of 50 degrees. That warmer climate already means your HVAC system isn’t working as hard to make the temperature inside your home more comfortable.
The second reason is that cooling your home generally requires less energy than heating your home. Air conditioners use energy-efficient compressors and a refrigeration cycle to bring down the temperature in your home, while heating units usually use some form of combustion that is not as efficient. That means they’re working harder to close a bigger temperature gap than air conditioners are.
Extra Tips for Making Your Home More Eco-Friendly in a Warm Climate
No matter where you live, a sealed, energy-efficient home envelope will significantly reduce the amount of money you spend on heating or cooling your home.
Hot, dry climates like Albuquerque’s are great for green homes because you’re already spending less money on maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature than someone in a cooler, wetter climate. If you want to go the extra mile in eco-friendliness, consider these tips:
- Use trees or overhangs to shade walls, windows and ground surfaces around your home. You’ll minimize exposure to direct sunlight and stop it from reflecting off the ground toward the house.
- Use light colors on your exterior walls and roof to reflect solar heat outward.
- Invest in movable or adaptable shade devices and awnings that will respond to the sun in its different positions.
- Use evaporation to cool down by placing a misting hose, greenery or damp curtains in front of an incoming breeze.
When paired with the usual guidelines for building green homes, these tips can help you maximize your energy savings. Thanks to Albuquerque’s warm climate, you can expect to save big on heating and cooling costs all year long.