Carbon Emissions

This property is a single storey 70 year old weatherboard home on 100 acres in an exposed elevated location on the edge of the town of Apollo Bay.

The owner’s interest in the assessment arises out of concern about carbon emissions from inefficiencies in the house and an interest in the potential for installing solar.

The assessment revealed good double-layer insulation in the roof except where there are exposed beams. There are single-glazed windows throughout the home, some facing the sea, and most without window coverings; the structure of the windows will not allow double glazing.

The appliances include a recently installed heat pump Hot Water System, a gas cooktop with electric oven, and all heating is provided by the slow combustion wood fire that draws in cold air through existing draughts in the building envelope. The assessor identified draughts from the penetrations made for downlights that compromise ceiling insulation.


The thermal performance of some single-glazed windows could be improved 100% with 'secondary glazing' (Ecomaster product). Window coverings with closed pelmets could be installed and cellular blinds considered – ‘Veneta’ honeycomb blinds are a low cost, DIY solution.

Draughts can be reduced with 'Draught Dodgers' by Ecomaster, product no. EM15D.

Also, although only five years old, the downlights could be replaced with IC rated closed unit LED down lights fitted by an electrician. The ceiling insulation could be improved at the same time.

The inefficient 3-star shower head could be replaced with a low flow showerhead (such as the Methven Kiri Satinjet Ultra Low Flow purchased from PURE ELECTRIC, phone 1300 867873; This change would save both water and costs of heating the excess hot water in the current system.

The owner’s summary was that “The assessor suggested that if I want to install solar, it would be best to upgrade the shed roof so that I could have a 10kW capacity solar system installed. He explained that this would generally provide for greater overall electrification of the home. This would allow me to power the heat pump with solar as well as installing an efficient contemporary split system (such as a Daikin) to substitute/support house the wood fire. If I wanted to, I could also consider replacing the gas cooktop with an induction cooker.”

This homeowner has replaced an old electric HWS with this electric heat pump HWS. A proposed roof top solar system would make the heat pump hot water even cheaper and more efficient

Richard recommended replacing old-style down lights (which are inefficient and cause drafts) with modern sealed downlights (pictured) which use less power and allow covering by ceiling insulation

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