With electricity prices seemingly rising quicker than the mercury on a day in January, your average Aussie family is going to be searching for cost effective alternatives to using Air Con this scorching summer season.
Here are a couple of simple ideas to help keep your home cool:
Heat Prevention is better than cure
Shading is important to prevent your home acting like a glass house and trapping heat from the sun shining through the windows. Think about shading vulnerable windows with blinds or shutters, particularly upstairs on 2 level homes. Consider planting deciduous trees on the western side of your home and vines on northern pergolas to let the winter sun through and keep the summer sun out.
Insulation where possible ensure your ceiling space is insulated and check the bathroom extractor fans have one-way dampers to prevent heat entering the house from the roof space during the day.
Ceiling/Pedestal Fans create a cooling effect by moving air. The air is the same temperature, but we feel cooler as air moves across our skin. These fans are very low cost to run.
Open & close windows at the right time by taking note of the weather forecast. Allow cool night time air to circulate through out your home at night by opening windows. Have mozzie screens installed, or security screens (particularly if you have toddlers living in apartments/multilevel homes). However, if it’s going to be a hot day, close the windows and use blinds to shade your house as you leave the in the morning so you keep the cool air inside and keep the thermal mass (interior building structure and furnishings) of your home cool for as long as possible; this is called ‘pre-cooling’.
It’s cool outside in the evening, the windows are open but the air isn’t moving! Try switching your extractor fans on in the bathroom/laundry at night and open the bedroom windows. These are low wattage fans, so don’t cost much to operate but can sometimes remove the hot air inside parts of your home/apartment and create a pathway to draw the cool air from outside into the bedrooms.
Smart ventilation systems
Well insulated and sealed homes do a wonderful job of keeping the warmth in during winter and the heat out during summer, but they also tend to trap unwanted summer heat in summer (particularly upstairs). There are many smart products which measure temperature (and humidity) and behave accordingly to shift cool air into your home at night or remove hot air during the day. Smart ventilation systems dramatically reduce summer cooling costs, particularly at night time.
Contact Ventis on 1800 80 20 80 to find out more about natural summer cooling solutions.