Itís Your Money > Building in the Philippines

Passive Cooling

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JoeLP:
I'm from Michigan in the USA originally.  We go yearly from weeks rarely above freezing to weeks in August rarely with a high below 85-90 degrees.  My dad made his money in the construction industry and mainly in residential homes.  His company grew a big name in one of the more rural areas in the UP of Michigan.  How'd he do it?  His houses were very well know for their insulation. 

The better you insulate, the better money you save.  We have a split system in our house now for a couple years and I had to fight with Tina to get her to understand what we NEEDED to do before hand.  She went ahead and bought the spit system anyway.  This was for the upper level(all of it) and our staircase was open going to the lower and our outer walls we only finished.  No paint or insulation(and the outside wasn't even complete finished at that time).  She hooked it up and we only used it part time and our bill went up over 5000php/mo.  Got the stairs enclosed.  The excess costs in the electric bill went down to only a 3500 jump.  Had half of the outer finishing that was finished hammered off, then went with the foam fiber cement mix and had it all finished.  Then flexicoat painted.  We now only have a bump in our electric bill of about 1500-2000.  Oh, and we use the AC all the time and it keeps the complete upper level(2 beds and a living area) completely cool at a much more effective level.

Insulation, in the big picture, saves you MUCH more money and electric if you do it right.
My dad built a lady a home just outside of Munising, MI in the UP.  She was living in it for her first winter.  A brutally cold one.  Her first gas(heating) bill came and it was really low.  Her new house was bigger than her old one, and the bill under half what her old house was.  She called the gas company and demanded they check into it.  She was afraid they'd find the mistake later and need to pay a huge fee then.  They came and checked everything out, and found nothing wrong.  She called again after the next month's bill came and same thing, it was too small.  This time when she called the gas company's call center the man finally asked "who built your home".  She said H & H Construction.  The man told her she had nothing to worry about.  That the company that built her house is why it's so cheap and that her house is just very well insulated.  That's what built my dad's business to being so large was his reputation on being able to give so many layers of insulation yet not jump the price but a little.  I grew up in the homes he built/remodeled.  I learned first hand the money saved if you insulate properly. 

All that said, if your renting, or not looking to stay in your house very long, it's not worth the investment.  Even more so in a place like the Philippines where the average person doesn't think about such things and such things are very unlikely to raise the value of your home because of such.

Also, like others have said on here, the place you buy your split system from has installers and our required that we use them for warranty sake.  And we have used that warranty 2 times.  Nothing the fault of the AC unit(and LG) but rather the workers who worked on it.  The local Robinson's appliance was unsure what to do because Tina and I were the first to get out the warranty and demand they live up to it and get someone to fix it.  No one ever demanded they live up to the warranty.  Sorta funny to me.  But, they did it(after a call to LG from Tina and myself) and at no cost to Tina and myself, they fixed their mistake.  But, the warranty was void if an unlicensed tech installed it.  So we just allowed their installers to do it all.  Think it cost like 800php.  Worth taking that route.

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