Preparing for a hot summer?
Warmer days are not far now, time for holidays, excursions and days at the beach... lovely! The heat however can some days be too high and unpleasant, just like the expense that it takes to run the air-con. The air conditioning system chews up through the energy consumption, and the electricity costs may be very high. There are a steps, however, we can take to keep our homes cool while saving money off the energy bill. Here is a Treble of Tips:
1) Keep the heat out - closing the curtains before the sun starts baking in will help you avoid internal floors and walls heating up, and as cool as possible. Also, before the air temperature raises outside, close the windows too, and shut the hot air out as much as possible.
2) Use the breeze - a gentle breeze always seems to give relief, as the sweat dries off our skin and cools down our body temperature. Cross ventilation between opposing windows and doors is the most natural way to create a pleasant breeze at home when the outside temperature is not excessively hot. The windows must stay close, then a floor fan can easily be used to create that breeze we crave so much, and purchasing a quiet one will give us respite in the bedroom, as we sleep. And if ceilings are high enough, ceiling fans are the most practical addition to any room, including the alfresco. At low force, the gentle breeze will allow you to feel cooler, in a natural and economical way.
3) Give it a chill - when the temperature is too high to be comfortable then the use of the air-con may be necessary. Instead of keeping it running for a long time, however, you will save energy by blasting cool air in your living space for a limited time and keeping this circulating by using fans. By limiting the use of the air-conditioning your energy bill won't be as high as you may have grown accustomed to.
Saving points on Air-Con:
Turning the Air-con on and off often won't save you money, as the system uses more energy to get started. A better option would be to keep it running, but at very low force.
If you can, select the areas of your home you want cool and keep closed the doors of the rooms that you choose to avoid cooling.
Think: because we turn the air-con on when the temperature is in the 30s or high 30s, why set the thermostat at temperatures of very low 20s? Setting the on/off switch a few degrees higher (a moderate cool of 23/25 degrees) will save you lots of energy consumption. Walking indoors from the high 30s the relief will indeed be noticeable and your wallet will feel it too.
James Treble has three decades of accumulated experience in the Building Industry, Real Estate and Interior Design and regularly shares his knowledge and experience in adding value to properties through effective design & styling. James is also an ambassador for Planet Ark and firmly believes in sensible purchasing, recycling and creative re-purposing. Watch his free videos on YouTube, and follow him on Facebook and Instagram for plenty of Design information. Most of James' knowledge is also accessible via Practical Design Online Course.