KEEPING THE HEAT OUT
When it comes to keeping the heat out of your home in summer there are a lot of simple things that you can do to stay comfortable without paying for energy.
Unlike cool night air, these breezes tend to occur in the late afternoon or early evening when cooling requirements usually peak.
Open windows when there is a cool breeze. People with sash windows don’t always remember this, but opening both the top and bottom windows by equal amounts is a very efficient way of cooling down a room. This lets rising warm air out of the top while drawing cooler air through the bottom.
Coastal breezes are usually from an onshore direction (south-east and east to north-east in most east coast areas).
A good principle is to have a well-sealed home to keep out hot air during times of high outside temperatures, and then open up doors and windows to provide maximum natural ventilation when outside air is cooler than inside your home.
Air typically leaks through:
- unsealed or poorly sealed doors and windows
- unsealed vents, skylights and exhaust fans
- gaps in or around ceiling penetrations (e.g. downlights, pipes and cables)
- gaps around wall penetrations (e.g. pipes, conduits, power outlets, switches, air conditioners and heaters)
- poorly fitted or shrunken floorboards.
Close off any draughts to keep cooler air in your house by applying weather stripping, foam sealant or silicone caulking around windows, doors, and the dog or cat door.
Insulation acts as a barrier to heat gain and loss by conduction through materials. In many homes, insulation is the most practical and cost effective way to make a house more energy efficient, keeping it cooler in summer and warmer in winter.
Contact a certified insulation installer for information and advice on your home.
Zoning is a good tip for saving energy. Just cool the room you are in and give your cooling device a chance to work properly, instead of trying to cool a bigger area than it’s capable of cooling. Shut the doors to this room and seal the gaps so your nice cool air doesn’t sneak out under the door.