The real estate market should be hot, your baby can’t sleep, and it’s 1am in the morning. Too much exposure to air conditioning can give her breathing issues, clogged nostrils and a pneumonia, but her room is incredibly humid. Our Naija sun as we know it, can fry an egg, even at 10am in the morning. This time of month, until November-ish, we all know what time of day it is – roasting time! Sometimes even the best air conditioning systems won’t cut it- the sun’s volatile temperature is too big a shoe for them to fill.
Roofs, windows, air conditioning systems, insulation — companies making and selling these products all have their claims about cooling and energy savings. Here are some cooling essentials to beat the heat without running up crazy utility bills, especially in your home:
Air vs Temperature:
One of the simplest solutions of all, is to figure out and focus more on what the air feels like than the actual temperature. What direction is your ceiling fan blowing? When you stand directly under your ceiling fan, it should be swinging counter clockwise, that way it pulls cooler ground air and blows it reversely on you. Just the air from your fan on your skin can make a room feel 10 degrees cooler. If you’re out of the room, turn it off as it does nothing but consume energy.
Box fans can also be the perfect appliance to cool your home. The trick is you need to use one to blow the cold air in and another to blow the hot air out, like a pull/push system.
Where to place your fans? That depends… A good rule of thumb is to place a box fan at any north facing windows/openings. This gives the benefit of any cool northern breezes! Then place box fans on the opposite side of your home to suck the hot air out of your home. You should be cool in no time.
While it might not be fun doling out a lot of cash on insulating, it is worth every penny. It improves the level of your cooling comfort to a huge degree and will save you money in the long run.
Now, to explain the process, thermodynamics works as heat flows from a hotter place to a cooler region. In the absence of this? Heat is seeping and crawling into your home. Poor air conditioner is taking all the piss.
USE YOUR GARDEN: True story, not many people are aware of the impact that their garden has on the heat of their home. Your garden can be used to plant trees which act as a shade for your home, that is if you’ve got garden space, or any earthy space that a garden could be created out of in your home. Not only that but they also look good. Certain species of trees can grow up to 50 feet and quickly too, growing around 8 feet per year.
Doesn’t it just make sense that if sunlight rays are coming in through your windows, your room’s temperature is going to be peaking through the roof?
A smart thing to do to curb this is to use cooling window coverings in the middle of the day, this will keep that sunlight from coming in especially if you’re away at work during the day especially in rooms that face west or south.
Coverings like a thermal curtain designed specifically for this purpose will prove to be most effective. The essence is to keep the light and heat from seeping through. You could even layer a sheer one over something slightly thicker, blackout curtains or even interior shutters. The temporary sacrifice of light and views will be adequately compensated for by a room that’s too cool for school.
UTILISE THE NIGHT AIR:
Most rooms get a bit of a temperature drop when evening comes. Make use of this time to reset the temperature of your home. Open your curtains and windows just as you’re going to sleep to allow the cool night to cool your home. Close your windows early in the morning to avoid creating sauna-like temperature in your home.
FIGURE OUT THE AIR DUCT HOLES:
Think about and look for all the little cracks and spots in your home where all the warm air gets in from, and you’d be shocked the size it amounts to in totality. All of these put together, is part of the reason why your home stays warm, spots like window edges, door frames, crawl space, even around recessed lights. Do a proper block of all these tiny orifices, and be sure to see a drop in the temperature in your home.
THE RIGHT LIGHTS:
Luminous lights can waste up to 90% of their energy in heat. Try switching out the incandescent lights for an energy saving light, like the compact fluorescent types. Not only will it help to keep your house cooler, it will also save you some money on your electricity bill!
AIR CONDITIONING HOW-TO:
So, what’s best use when it comes to keeping your home cool using air-conditioning?
is it better to leave your air running all day so the house stays cool and it doesn’t have to work so hard to get back down to a comfy temperature? Or should you set your device a few degrees higher when you’re not home?
It’s all comes down to balance. Heat is going to flow from a hotter environment to a cooler one. So in this case the heat will want to come from outside into your nice cool house. If you set your thermostat higher so it’s warmer in day there’s going to be less air flow. If it’s really hot out door and you set it to lower temperatures, the air conditioner has to work harder.
This then brings to the fore the importance of a programmable thermostat that allows you to set your temperatures and forget about it. Or a wifi control you can control with your phone so you can cool your house before you get back home.
The same rule of principles applies with window unit air conditioners. Turn them off or to a higher temperature while you’re gone. I’ve learned that the hard way when letting a cooling system run too hard for too long.
A/C UNITS…THE A, B, C: It’s important to have the correct AC unit size for your room. An oversized air conditioner is actually less effective and wastes energy at the same time. Air conditioners remove both heat and humidity from the air. If the unit is too large, it will cool the room quickly, but only eradicate some of the humidity. This leaves the room with a damp, sweaty feeling.
Then look for air conditioners with energy star certification. They use 10% less energy, and cost less to run. Then be sure the unit is installed correctly. “An improperly installed room air conditioner leaks considerable air, increases energy costs and makes your home less comfortable,” he said.
Go on then, Let’s get your home cooling, as cool as “Cool and the Gang”.