Transform your home into a cool oasis as the temperature rises
The high temperatures of summer mean retreating indoors to stay cool is often the best option. Air conditioning is a quick solution to reduce interior temperatures, but there are easy ways you can improve your home to help your air conditioner run more efficiently, which will minimise power consumption.
Look around your home with the following strategies in mind and you may better understand where heat is entering your home and adopt ways to help reduce the problem.
Make the most of air circulation by opening up windows on either side of the house. This creates a cross breeze that drastically reduces heat build-up and brings in the fresh air.
Install awnings or shadesails, or hang shadecloth to prevent direct sunlight from entering the house, helping to keep it cool. Plant deciduous trees near the house, or a vine to grow over a pergola, so you can take advantage of the shade in summer and sunlight in winter.
While glass absorbs heat, window tinting helps block thermal radiation, which is responsible for increased temperatures inside the home. Tinting is a DIY job that involves attaching a film to the surface of the glass, allowing you to enjoy large windows without excessive heat. In winter, this insulation will also reduce heat loss from inside the house. If installing new windows, choose double glazing for extra protection.
Keeping the house dark during daylight hours helps keep out the heat. Opaque interior or exterior blinds can be easily installed to restrict the amount of light entering the house.
When it’s so hot that running the air conditioner is necessary, you can still make it run efficiently to keep bills low.
If yours is more than 10 years old, consider replacing it with a new model, choosing one that suits the size of the room. Keep it efficient by shading the external unit and cleaning the filter every month during summer.
Set the thermostat as high as you can tolerate and close rooms you aren’t using so it won’t need to work as hard.