For the last week or so, our city has been under an extreme heat weather alert, if you’re one of the unfortunate individuals without air conditioning and are relying for a gentle breeze to cool your home, you might be surprised to hear that opening your window in the sweltering heat is actually not helping your home cool down.
Ever notice that the temperature outside feels cooler than the temperature inside when the air conditioning isn’t turned on? That’s because when the temperature outside is about 10 degrees warmer than the temperature inside your home, the air wafting into your home is increasing the internal temperature rather than cooling it down. Once the temperature has dropped, you can open your windows to let some of the cool air in again.
During the day, it’s best to keep your windows and doors shut in order to keep the hot air from entering the home and keep the air circulating with fan. According to Green Building Advisor, air flow can improve your level of temperature comfort by about five degrees or more, so if your average level of comfort is at about 23 degrees C, than you could be just as comfortable with the temperature at 28 degrees C with the fan on.
For this to work effectively, your doors, roof and windows have to be well insulated to prevent the outside weather from affecting the internal temperature of your home.
How To Check if Your Windows are Well Insulated:
- Check the edges of your window frame for any light peering in on a sunny day.
- If it has been raining, run your fingers along the seam between the frame and the wall to check for any moisture.
- Gently knock on your window panes to listen for any rattling. If you notice rattling, then your window is like not well insulated.
If you’ve checked all these areas, but are still not sure about the insulation, call an expert for an inspection. Neglecting an insulation issue will only result in a more expensive problem with higher utility bills, possible pests or rodents infestation and damaging of the interior and exterior of your home.
Once you’ve determined your window is well insulated, you can use the following tips to stay cool with your windows and doors closed:
- Use blinds, curtains, awnings to keep direct sunlight out the house, especially on the east and west side of the house.
- Make use of the fan to keep air circulating, but don’t forget to turn it off when you leave the room.
- Limit heat-producing appliances use during the day
- Use CFL light bulbs
- Turn the dishwasher and dryer on in the evening
- BBQ instead of using the stove
- Wear lighter or thinner clothing in the home
Need more information on insulation and energy efficient windows? Leave me a comment below and I’ll be happy to provide you with some insight or if you have any other comments about keeping cool in the summer, please feel free to share!