Summer is on the way folks, and it's mighty tempting to crank up the AC straight away and flop around on the bathroom floor in your undies but wait!... Before you go set the dial to -10° C there's a few things you can try first to save you money on that looming energy bill and make your house more comfortable along the way.
1. Shade your windows
In particular, your North and West facing windows will let in a tonne of unwanted heat. When it comes to keeping out the sun, external shading, such as outside blinds, do a much better job than internal shading such as your curtains. Keeping your blinds down or setting up a shade cloth can make a huge difference when trying to keep your house cool as that powerful summer sun comes out.
2. Closing doors
Closing off areas of the house during the day can really help you save energy when keeping your home cool. If there are parts of your house that just get too hot in Summer, close off those areas so they don’t heat up the rest of your home.
3. Open your windows at night
Open your house up at night to capitalise on the cooler night air. In multi-story houses opening up your home will draw cooler air in from ground level windows which passes out upper story windows, cooling the whole house.
4. Try the fan
Before switching on the AC, try turning on any fans you have in the house. Fans use a fraction of the energy that air conditioners use, saving you big bucks over summer and reducing your carbon footprint. Once things really heat up you can try running the AC with the fans still on to circulate that cool air, this way you can feel more comfortable at a higher AC temperature setting.
5. Draught proof your home
When it comes to draught proofing, a little effort goes a long way. When you've closed up your home to seal in all that cool air, the hot summer air is sneaking its way back into your home through the gaps around doors, windows, air vents, skirting and floorboards, which can be a real nuisance to your comfort and your wallet. Sealing up air leakage points around the house has a massive impact on improving the thermal performance of your home.
6. Invest in some insulation
Similarly to draught proofing, installing good quality insulation is a permanent upgrade to your home that really pays off all year round. You might be surprised to know that the vast majority of homes (including new houses!) are very poorly insulated. A 5% gap in insulation approximately halves insulation performance, so until you have total insulation coverage, that pesky summer heat is going to find a new home in your house.
These are just a few of the steps you can take to keep your house cool over summer, all the while you're saving money on your power bills and making a positive impact on the environment. Yay! Happy summer folks and good luck keeping it cool.