Green Plumbing – Just How Affordable & Environmentally Friendly Is It?

green plumbingHaving an eco-friendly or ‘green’ home is becoming more and more popular in New Zealand. Sometimes it’s hard to know what aspects of home improvements will reap the biggest rewards both environmentally and financially when going green. Let me let you in on a little secret, not many areas of your home will have more potential than your plumbing when it comes to going green.

When you green your plumbing you’ll save on energy costs, improve your health and benefit the environment. Do these improvements sound like something you’re interested in? Then read on… (more…)

Posted In: Christchurch, Fiordland, Hauraki Islands, Kaikoura, Plumbers

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installing solar panels

If you’ve ever considered installing solar panels, you are not alone. Kiwi homes are generally exposed to 20-30 times more energy from the sun than they use in power or gas and most of its going to waste. By making use of it, we can reduce emissions, create jobs and contribute towards energy independence.

The cost of solar panels continues to fall rapidly and it’s become competitive with other power generation options. So it’s not surprising to discover that the installation of solar power in NZ has increased by 370% in the last two years.
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Posted In: Hutt Valley, Kapiti Coast, Marlborough, Selwyn, Solar Installation, Stratford, Waitakere City

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led lightingLED lighting has long been the next-best thing in retail and commercial lighting by designers, but now, they’re catching on with homeowner’s thanks to their energy efficiency.  LED lighting can incur higher upfront costs. However, you don’t need to wait a long time to recover your investment in energy savings.

LED lighting

Light-Emitting Diodes (LED’s) provide many benefits as they burn cool and emit clean, colourless light similar to natural daylight. They also provide significant energy savings as they will last from 35,000 to 200,000 hours. This compares to 1,000 hours for incandescent or 8,000 for compact fluorescents. (more…)

Posted In: Appliance Technician, Auckland, Electricians, Hamilton, lighting, North Shore, Rotorua, Tauranga, Waikato

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eco-friendly green homeIf you’re looking to reap the financial and environmental benefits of living in an eco-friendly green home, then consider building from scratch. A new home lets you add energy-saving features at a significantly lower cost than if you renovated an older home.

Eco-friendly green home

An eco-friendly green home will be designed around solar heating. It will also involve orienting the house and as many windows as practical north.  The kitchen should be east-facing with the living areas west-facing. This will decrease the need for you to use appliances to heat or cool your home.

Builderscrack has professional tradespeople available to advise and provide you with eco-friendly green home solutions. Read more on what to consider when building your eco-friendly home. (more…)

Posted In: Architects, Builders, Invercargill, Kaikoura, Kaipara, Kapiti Coast, Solar Installation

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solar panelA solar panel installer is a tradesperson who is skilled in the installation of solar panels on and around your house. These can be used to heat water, and provide electricity to your house.

The simplest form of solar power is the solar electric panel. These panels utilise photons to generate electricity.

These photovoltaic panels are either free standing rigid sheets used to harness the sun’s energy or are set into the roof. You can also get peel and stick laminates, if applicable with your roof type.

A solar power installer will harness the suns solar rays through solar panels and cells to power your home.  When hiring a solar panel specialist, they’ll work with you on the design, planning and installation of solar energy projects.

Solar power is an eco friendly and renewable form of energy and the demand for it is growing.

Firstly, you’ll have an initial consultation where your home will be visited and assessed.  Thne the installer will design a plan that includes the best approach based on the latest technology, your homes unique characteristics and your budget.  From there they’ll oversee the specific details of the installation.

Solar panel installers may also work in a maintenance role.  If you experience problems with your solar power panels they will be available to remedy them. They may also perform evaluations or recommend improvements on your existing sytems.

Solar Panel installers will be familiar with specialised equipment including transformers, photo voltaic modules and inverters just to name a few.  They may use IT to track projects and energy savings.

Solar power is a great way to cut power bills, and solar power is storable.

Services provided by a solar panel installer include:

  • Solar heating
  • Solar hot water
  • Solar power
  • Solar panel installation, maintenance and repairs
  • Consultation on the best solar panels for your home

Posted In: Pacific Islands, Palmerston North, Papakura, Queenstown, Rangitikei, Solar Installation

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resource management consultantResource Management consultants are tradespeople who specialise in getting the most out of a homeowner’s land and home.

They seek to maximize the utility (efficiency and effectiveness) of every resource and to consider what additional resources would improve the capabilities.

In essence, the resource manager improves the homes functionality by making the most out of available resources.

Resource Management Consultants will be able to assist with resource consent applications, assess the effects on the environment, and project planning and management. They will be able to undertake environmental planning and work with councils on behalf of homeowners on difficult cases, providing advice on development potential and future prospects for your land.

Resource Management Consultants may provide the following services:

  • full residential subdivision design
  • consent
  • project management
  • rural subdivisions
  • commercial consents (motels, schools, factories etc)
  • comprehensive housing developments
  • water permits
  • discharge consents
  • gravel extractions
  • submissions to District Plan variations
  • submissions to Annual Plans

The Resource Management Act (RMA) is permissible legislation with the Regional and District Plans setting out what you are to undertake on your property without the need for a consent – plus setting the different levels of consent (controlled, discretionary etc) that would be required for differing activities (subdivision, buildings, uses/activities etc).

Hire a Resource Management Consultant

Posted In: Auckland, Resource Management, Rotorua, Ruapehu, Selwyn

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interior designerAn Interior Designer will draw upon many disciplines to enhance the function, safety, and aesthetics of interior spaces.

Their main is on how various colours, textures, furniture, lighting, and space work together to meet the needs of a home’s occupants.

Traditionally, an Interior Designer focused on decorating, choosing a style and colour palette, then selecting appropriate furniture, floor and window coverings, artwork, and lighting. However, an increasing number of designers are becoming involved in architectural detailing.

Designers frequently collaborate with architects, electricians, and building contractors to ensure that designs are safe and meet construction requirements. Whatever space they are working on, almost all designers follow the same process.

The designer usually meets face-to-face with the client to find out how the space will be used and to get an idea of the client’s preferences and budget.  The designer will also visit the space to take inventory of existing furnishings and identify positive attributes of the space, along with any potential problems.

interior designThe designer then formulates a design plan and estimates the project cost. When the design concept is confirmed with the client, the designer will begin specifying the materials, finishes, and furnishings required, such as furniture, lighting, flooring, wall covering, and artwork.

If a project requires structural work, the designer works with an architect or engineer on that part of the project.

Most designs also require the hiring of contractors to do technical work, such as lighting, plumbing, or electrical wiring. Often designers choose contractors and write work contracts.

Finally, the designer develops a timeline for the project, coordinates contractor work schedules, and makes sure work is completed on time. The designer oversees the installation of the design elements, and after the project is complete, the designer, together with the client, pay follow-up visits to the building site to ensure that the client is satisfied. If the client is not satisfied, the designer makes corrections.

What do in-store Interior Designers do?

Designers who work for furniture or home and garden stores sell merchandise in addition to offering design services. In-store designers provide services, such as selecting a style and colour scheme that fits the client’s needs or finding suitable accessories and lighting, similar to those offered by other interior designers.

interior designerHowever, in-store designers rarely visit clients’ spaces and use only a particular store’s products. Interior designers sometimes supervise assistants who carry out their plans and perform administrative tasks, such as reviewing catalogues and ordering samples.

Designers who run their own businesses may also devote considerable time to developing new business contacts, examining equipment and space needs, and attending to business matters.

Although most interior designers do many kinds of projects, some specialize in one area of interior design.  Some interior designers do many projects, while others specialize in specific areas – residential, commercial, lighting, bathrooms, as well as acoustics and home theatres.

Hire an interior designer

Posted In: Furniture Repair Professionals, Interior Designers, Southland, Stratford, Tararua

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air conA heatpump and air con specialist is a tradesperson with the skills required to install heatpump and air con systems. They are able to assess your needs and provide you with a good solution for your home heating and cooling problems.

A good installer will be qualified and have all the knowledge and skills to provide an excellent product.

Selecting air conditioning for your home is a major decision.  It’s an important investment today which will play a key role in your energy bills for years to come.  When the summer heat is at its peak, you’ll want the best, most reliable cooling possible.

It’s not recommended to buy and install it yourself as you may void the manufacturer’s warranty. Hire a professional installer today.

The services of a heat pump and air con will be able to:

  • Advise on the correct size unit you’ll need
  • Advise whether there are environmental issues to think about like sea spray, or sulphur
  • Advise on where the indoor and outdoor units should be put
  • Install the air conditioning so that it’s compliant with any rules and regulations
  • Advise on what you need to do to maintain your air conditioning unit, and provide you with contact numbers to call for servicing or problems
  • Provide a written warranty for the heat pump and its installation
  • Provide a lesson in getting the best out of your heat pump. Read the operating manual, but also get a practical hands on lesson which includes basic heat pump operation, using the remote, thermostat and timers, what the different modes are and how to clean and remove air filters

Posted In: Heating Professionals, Ruapehu, Selwyn, South Taranaki

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