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By : Rodrigo Garcia Alvarado, Jaime Soto, Cristian Muñoz, Ariel Bobadilla, Rodrigo Herrera, Waldo Bustamante

The current depletion of fossil fuels and environmental degradation are requiring greater energy efficiency in buildings, particularly in the residential sector. However, environmental improvement actions for dwellings are usually based on general considerations, without identifying the most appropriate measurements to be taken in each case, or reviewing their application with stakeholders. This article puts forward a strategy to propose effective and feasible modifications in the design or refurbishment of single-family homes to reduce energy use while maintaining indoor comfort. The improvements proposed are based on dynamic energy simulations of individual models adapted to local realities that can be carried out by regular professionals. The process includes the review of studies and information on the geographic area, and compilation of the constructive features and occupancy data of each house to create a proper energy behaviour model. Possible improvements to the building are then simulated separately in each model and the results recorded. Subsequently, a budgetary analysis of these alternatives according to construction costs and financial projections is carried out in order to identify retrofit packages and consult the opinions of residents and builders. The application of this strategy is demonstrated in the study of several houses in Concepción, Chile, where different sets of measures have been identified to achieve high reductions in energy demand while having low cost and being highly appreciated by the participants. This provides a methodology for developing and validating effective solutions for the environmental improvement of existing dwellings and new housing projects.
Keywords: Energy-Efficiency, Simulation Analysis, Single-Family Dwellings, Chile.

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