Energy-Efficient Garage Remodel Features LED Lighting from EnvironmentalLights.com
EnvironmentalLights.com, a leading source for high-quality, energy-efficient LED lighting, recently teamed up with local San Diego residents to complete a green garage remodel. The nonfunctional garage was transformed into a finished guest house, complete with LED lighting, energy-efficient windows, insulation, a tankless water heater, water conserving toilet and low-voltage heating/cooling unit.
“We wanted to incorporate sustainable, durable and energy-efficient materials into our garage remodel,” said Justin Brown, homeowner. “By paying attention to the details and paying a little extra for the upgraded materials we knew that we would be adding resale value to our home.”
According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), the Remodeling Market Index (RMI) climbed to 50 in the third quarter of 2012, up from 45 in the previous quarter. The RMI is at its highest point since the third quarter of 2005, tracking the positive trends recently seen in the rest of the housing sector.
With only 840 square feet in their 1930s-era house, the additional 320 square feet that the garage added to their living space provides them with not only an additional bathroom, but also home office and family room.
“From our initial drawings and concepts, the garage has every detail we wanted down to the custom closets and fun color-changing LED lighting,” said Stacy Brown, homeowner. “The lighting and appliances also help to cut down on additional costs we may see in our utility bills.”
A detached garage conversion is also a perfect way for a homeowner to make a little extra money by using the space as a rental property. In this case, the homeowners also added a private gated entrance from the driveway so future owners could consider this option.
By properly insulating the garage, adding windows and also installing an energy-efficient heating and air conditioning unit in the space, the new guest house complies with local ordinances and building codes and is guaranteed to be warm in winter and cool in summer.
Why Go Green?
The National Association of Home Builders states that the top ways to increase energy efficiency are:
· Install appropriate insulation in area to be remodeled.
· Install high-efficiency windows instead of those that minimally meet the energy code.
· Seal all exterior penetrations in areas being remodeled.
· Purchase only ENERGY STAR®-rated appliances.
· Install only low-flow water fixtures.
· Upgrade to at least an ENERGY STAR®-rated water heater, or better yet, a tankless water heater.
· Purchase the highest efficiency HVAC system you can afford and make sure it is correctly sized for the area you want to condition.
LED lighting was installed in the entire guest house to help save on extra energy costs - and to add a little extra flair. The LED light bulbs in the ceiling lights are wirelessly controlled by a Lutron Pico Wireless remote synced to Lutron Maestro Wireless Electronic Low Voltage dimmers. This allows the user to turn all the lights on/off or dim them from any area in guest house at the same time.
A Lutron Pico wireless remote was also synced up to the outdoor lighting so that the homeowners can turn on the lights from inside their home before walking out to the guest house. The built-in cabinets in the laundry and wet bar area really bring the room alive with their color-changing capabilities. RGB Double Density LED strip light was installed above and below the cabinets and are controlled with an RGB LED Touch Controller.
“Everyone that visits the house loves to play with the new color-changing LED lights,” said Brown. “I can’t believe how energy-efficient they are. They use less than 50 watts of power!”
This LED controller allows them to use the color wheel to select any color they desire or choose one of the 11 pre-programmed modes, which includes flipping through all the colors. White light can also be created with this strip light for standard lighting use.