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Category Energy Efficient Building

Planning Your Home’s Electrical System: A Comprehensive Guide


Engineering man showing blueprint detail for people buying house.

Planning your home’s electrical system is a complex task that requires careful consideration. Proper planning ensures that your installations meet your needs and expectations, preventing issues like circuit overloads and excessive use of connector strips.

Key Considerations for Your Electrical Plan

Pay attention to the layout of your home, including doors, their opening directions, fireplaces, staircases, windows, and steps. Create a detailed floor plan, possibly using software to help you design accurately.

Planning Your Kitchen Area

The kitchen often requires the most detailed electrical planning due to the number of appliances. Plan for lighting and install connections for essential appliances such as extractor fans, freezers, microwaves, refrigerators, and ovens. Ensure you have outlets for smaller appliances like blenders, steamers, coffee machines, and toasters. You might also consider installing a telephone in your kitchen.

Planning Bedrooms

Start with lighting around the bed, using wall lights to save space. Install electrical outlets near the bed for charging phones and other devices. For children’s rooms, plan for their changing needs as they grow, such as heat lamps for toddlers and desk lamps and computers for older children.

Planning the Living Room

When installing an electrical system in the living room, focus on the TV and telephone areas, positioning sockets appropriately. Plan for the placement of internet connections, antennas, and loudspeakers, and avoid leaving loose cables.

Bathroom Planning

Modern bathrooms often function as personal spa areas, requiring more extensive electrical planning. Besides the traditional hairdryers, ceiling lamps, and shaver sockets, plan for appliances like steam dryers, heated toilet seats, shower radios, and electric toothbrushes. Ensure you have enough sockets to accommodate all these appliances and check local bathroom connection regulations to ensure compliance.

Smart Home System

Advanced technology has introduced more components that require careful electrical planning, including motion detectors with cameras, light and dimmer control systems, electric blinds, multi-room audio systems, and door-to-door communication systems. Design these systems to be flexible and easy to integrate, allowing you to take them with you if you move.


Effective planning of your home’s electrical system is crucial for ensuring functionality and safety. Although it may seem complicated, breaking it down step-by-step makes it manageable. Following these guidelines will help you execute your installations effectively. Always consult a local electrician to ensure your plans meet all safety standards and regulations.

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Six Ideas for Energy Efficient Construction

You may be unfamiliar with the term, but the passive solar design is about as old as human civilization. It involves orienting a building and working with nature to keep a structure comfortable for a minimum of energy usage instead of fighting the elements.

  1. Orient the building

Prevailing winds can impact how cold you feel in winter and how hot you are in summer. Orienting the building properly can also help a structure soak up heat from the sun in winter and minimize absorption in summer. This is done hand-in-hand with details like window choices and landscaping. It is not a choice that stands on its own.

  1. Use thermal mass

Thermal mass means having thick walls or being partially underground or similar. It serves as natural insulation to help protect the building from heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer, making it effective at maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature year-round without running an HVAC system.

  1. Heat sinks

A wall painted black and facing the winter sun can soak up a great deal of heat during the day and then radiate it into the house at night. Similarly, the right flooring can serve to soak up heat from windows or skylights during the day and radiate it back into the house at night.

  1. Windows and daylighting

worker installing a new windowSome of the above techniques work in conjunction with the proper orientation of windows to make sure the right things are getting maximum sunlight in winter and minimum in summer. Choice of windows and window positioning thus plays an important role in passive solar design with regards to managing temperature. Secondarily, proper positioning of windows can provide natural sunlight throughout the day thereby minimizing the need for artificial lighting sources. Be sure to consult with a remodeling contractor that specializes in energy efficiency. 


      5. Landscaping

Deciduous trees can provide shade in summer but then lose their leaves in winter, exposing the main structure to the winter sun. Evergreens are often used to create a windbreak against prevailing winter winds. Proper orientation of the building combined with strategic placement of the right kind of landscaping will cut heating and cooling costs substantially.

This kind of design used to be the default norm for building design and construction. It also gets called vernacular architecture and is strongly associated with historic regional styles, such as adobe structures in the Southwestern US states and deep porches in the rainy Southeast.

Deep porches allow for keeping windows open to create a cross breeze during frequent rainstorms in the hot, humid southeastern US. Deep porches went out of style to some degree with the rise of the air conditioner, which tells you that there is an alternative to AC.

6. Efficient HVAC Systems

All of the ideas outlined above will not entirely eliminate the need to have an HVAC system. Extreme weather conditions will demand that you have heating and cooling. Additionally, proper ventilation is important to maintain good health. Talk with an air conditioning repair service to discuss various options and proper installation.