Beautiful, healthy and energy-efficient rooms!
Before fantasising about the furniture and colors of our children’s room, it’s very important to stop and make sure that the room is healthy for the child, efficient and that it respects the environment, and also that it’s cost-effective for parents! The first step to take is to choose which room to designate for the children among the rooms available in our apartment. It’s advisable to choose rooms with windows facing the south because in winter they warm up naturally and efficiently. In summer instead, the warmest sun rays will reach the rooms facing west, so it’s not a problem for the windows facing south. Moreover, if possible, you should choose windows facing opposite directions to allow for the best natural ventilation. There are obvious solutions for those who don’t have the privilege of having the room face the best direction and are forced to give the children a room facing west.An example is “Low-E” glass that allows for sunlight to pass through and not the radiation which provides heat and is, therefore, indispensable for the windows facing west.
The next step is to choose the right materials.
Flooring: I suggest choosing parquet. There are lots of choices on the market, from synthetic parquet to a natural wooden one. The most eco-friendly parquet is made out of bamboo. Carpets are not advisable as they accumulate dust (especially in Israel) and are not suitable especially if your child suffers from respiratory problems.
Lighting: nowadays the best lighting (besides natural light, obviously….) is led. It comes in many colors and is similar to sunlight, it lasts long, uses little energy and does not heat up.
Colors: it’s important to use water-based paint for walls that don’t emit poisonous particles and smells. These types of colors are also available for furniture.
Windows: the very popular aimé (in Israel) aluminum windows are also not advised. In fact, they are not insulated, and they let heat through, making rooms freezing in winter and boiling in summer. There are alternative materials (available in Israel) such as PVC or integrated wood-aluminum which provide excellent insulation.
Once we have chosen the materials, we can concentrate on choosing heating and cooling systems. Using an air conditioner to heat up the room, even if it’s a common practice, is not advisable.The majority of air conditioners is placed on the upper part of a room. As known, hot air (lighter than cold air) accumulates at the top.The direct result is that the air at people’s heights tends to remain the coldest.Moreover, if the air conditioner emits hot air and doesn’t warm up things like walls and floors and when it’s turned off, the room cools down quickly.One of the most efficient systems is the water underfloor heating system (non-electric) suitable though only in total renovation cases where the whole floor is redone.Alternatively, electric convectors are easy to use and are very efficient. I always suggest considering ceiling fans.The fan blows air on the body and dries it. Consequently, the body feels refreshed, as if the temperature decreased by 3 or 4 degrees. This way one can limit the use of air conditioners and in more extreme cases, save a significant amount of energy and money. Moreover, most fans have a seasonal button (summer/winter switch). Pressing this button during winter, the fan will turn the opposite way, making the air flow at low speed towards the bottom, this way, the hot air on the upper part of the room will come down towards us, making us feel good. As we can see from what has been mentioned above, a series of simple (and often economic) precautions can significantly improve the quality of our children’s lives!
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