Keep your home cool this summerWith hot and humid temperatures just around the corner, there’s no better time to start preparing to keep your home cool this summer.

And with energy prices continuing to rise, there are simpler ways to reduce your reliance on air conditioners to do the job. Keep your home cool this summer with these top 10 tips. They’ll help ensure that you beat the heat of a Queensland summer and keep your cool – both physically and mentally!

Keep your home cool this summer

1. Insulate Insulate Insulate

Whether it’s your roof, floor or windows, proper insulation is your number one defence against outside temperatures. A home’s windows are a huge source of unwanted heat gain during the summer months, with *tests showing that over 80% of the heat gained during summer can come from windows alone. Double glazing has been known to increase thermal resistance by up to 94% and is supported by a host of environmental, technical and economic credentials.
*Awa.org.au

2. Keep your blinds or curtains closed during the day

Naturally, you will also want to ensure that your windows are adequately covered by either blinds or curtains which can effectively stop additional heat gain from entering your home.

3. Use a fan

Fans cost a lot less to run than air conditioners. Ceiling fans help to circulate air through your home and during summer, should blow forward in a counter-clockwise direction. This forces air down and will assist in making you feel cooler. Portable floor fans can be moved around to ensure that the room you are in stays cool.

4. Add awnings, shades, and/or shutters to the exterior of your windows

Shading the glass areas of your home, together with double glazing, is one of the best ways to reduce unwanted heat gain. Glass windows and doors are one of the greatest sources of heat entering a home. Add external shading devices such as eaves, awnings, verandas, louvres or pergolas. Try to incorporate vertical structures such as screens, lattice and vertical awnings for further shade.

5. Plant trees and shade plants

Keep your home cool with well thought-out landscaping that makes use of trees, shrubs, ground covers and vines. They can provide cooling summer shade while helping you to conserve energy and increase your comfort levels. A tree can block over 70% of the sun’s harsh rays coming through your windows and walls. Spending a day analysing how the sun travels over your property in summertime will help with placing trees in a strategic position to prevent heat build-up in the morning and those intense afternoon rays.

6. Seal your ducts

Leaking air from your air ducts can account for a huge loss of the cool air within your home. By some accounts, leaking ductwork is responsible for up to 25% of the cooling costs in an average home. Make sure you have your ducts tested by a professional, qualified contractor and if any leaks are evident, get them repaired immediately.

7. Stop using your oven

Your oven acts as an instant heat producer, warming the inside of your home and adding to the discomfort of a hot interior. Take it outside and use the warm evenings for barbecues or picnics – and stick to those no-cook salads instead.

8. Install cooler lighting

Replace incandescent bulbs with cooler light-emitting diodes (LEDs) or compact fluorescents (CFLs).  LED Lights are a relatively new technology. They can help you save up to 90% on lighting costs.

9. Take cold showers

Keep your home cool – but also keep your body cool! Take a few cold showers each day but keep the timing to a minimum. This will help to alleviate some of the discomfort of a humid Queensland summer, too.

10. Use cotton sheets

Pack those winter flannel sheets away and swop for some light summer cotton sheets to help keep your home cool this summer. Cotton sheets are light and breathe well. These are much better at preventing hot, sticky nights and feel cooler against your body. Bamboo sheets are another popular option – they are three times more absorbent than cotton.

READ MORE: 

The Importance of Window Placement in a Home

10 Ways to Reduce Energy Costs