InIntense summer heat is a big let-down especially if you only intend to have a summer staycation at home. Your home can get too hot that the easiest thing you can think of doing is let your air conditioning unit run the whole day. A no-brainer it may sound but it may not be a financially-viable option. You can expect mounting power bills, your unit getting the run of your money. Plus, there’s the risk of overworking your unit, rendering it inefficient.
But there are simple things you can do to reduce the summer heat trapped inside your home without breaking your bank or your air conditioning unit:
Opening windows on opposite sides of your home
This method is what we call Cross Ventilation where we allow cool air from outside our homes through an open window and release the warm air inside out of the house through the open window at the opposite side.
Unplug electronic appliances when not in use
If you think that putting your appliances off is enough, you have to think again. If your appliances remain plugged, they still keep drawing power. As an example, think of the red tiny lights that indicate if an appliance is turned off – it still drains energy and thus emit heat.
Use natural light or energy efficient lights
Maximize the daylight by letting as much light in to your home. If you are still using traditional bulbs of high wattage, you must remember that they can increase the heat in a room. Replace your old bulbs into energy-efficient lighting such as halogen incandescent, compact fluorescent lamps and LEDs.
Install shades outside of your windows
Installing shades outside of your windows can block the sun while still allowing light to come in. There are the trellis-types, awning style and overhang shades. These types of exterior shades are designed in such a way that they catch the sunlight and reflect some of it away from the window or from rooms. The less sunlight that comes inside, the less heat will be trapped.
Paint your roof with a light-colored paint
A dark-colored roof absorbs heat and thus can make your home too hot during the summer. Light-colored roof, on the other hand, can reflect the sunlight and reduce your home’s internal temperature. Replacing the roof can get very expensive but if you have much that you can invest in replacing your roof, go ahead. For a cheaper option, you can repaint your roof instead with a light or pastel shade. Consult your roof supplier prior to painting to ensure that they can be painted on.
Change the air flow direction of your ceiling fans
Do you have ceiling fans in your home? There’s a bit of a hack that not most people know about ceiling fans. If you check the base of your ceiling fan, you might notice a small switch. Change the air flow to a counter-clockwise direction during summer as this will force the air down and keep you cool. During winter, air flow of your ceiling fan must be on a clockwise direction to circulate the air throughout the room.
Dry wet laundry in a clothesline
You can take full advantage of the heat of the sun by hanging your wet laundry in a clothesline to dry. Using your dryer can produce more heat that can get trapped inside your home. If the clothesline is strategically placed outside of windows, air passing through your hanging laundry and coming into your home is cooled.
Get your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans to work
The exhaust fans can vent odors, moisture, humid air out of the house. It can also drive excess heat from the other rooms to exit the house through the vents. When it’s the warmest time of the day, you can get these to work.
Schedule your laundry and ironing
You have to remember that when doing laundry and ironing your clothes, heat is produced. This will add to the heat that will be trapped inside your home especially when you do this in times when it is the warmest. Do them when air is cooler. You can do your laundry early on in the morning so you can dry your wet laundry by hanging them instead of using your dryer. You will be able to catch enough sun for your laundry to dry. You can also do your ironing in a cooler time in the afternoon.
Open your windows at night
The air is usually cooler at night during summer. So, by letting the cool air in, you are also cooling your house. You have to be cautious when doing this though. You might have to install grills to secure your home.
Plant trees around your home
This will be good if you have enough space in your backyard. This will help provide shade to your home. You just have to plant them strategically that when they grow they can give shade to the warmest part of the house or the part where the sun hits the hardest.
Try cooking in your backyard
As you are dealing directly with heat when cooking, expect your home to be very warm. You can either cook at the coolest time of the day. Or, another option would be to bring your cooking outdoors. No heat then can be trapped in the kitchen.
Have you ever heard of the phrase, “it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity”. Well, that rings true these days. Our weather apps sometimes say, the temperature is at this degree but it feels like a higher degree. Yes, the heat index increases more than the air temperature. To counter humidity, you can use the Dehumidifier so you would feel cooler.