#1 ENERGY PROBLEM
My House is Too Hot
My Home is too hot. Its a very common complaint we hear every summer.
“Its hotter inside than outside.” “We can’t sleep in our bedrooms in summer.” “If we didn’t run the air conditioning 24 x 7 we would not survive!”
The good news it that is doesn’t need to be this way at all! You can have greater thermal comfort all year round without exhausting yourself, your family or your wallet. To help you along your journey, here are six energy efficient ways to make your home summer-ready, and prepared for heatwave conditions for the life of your home!
The brilliant thing about these tips is that will also work for your home in winter, making your home warmer with lower energy bills.
Clean your air conditioning unit
Maintaining the cleanliness of your air conditioner (A/C) is essential to ensuring its efficiency. Blocked and poorly maintained filters slow down the performance of your unit meaning that it will struggle to keep your home cool. It can even affect your indoor air quality as well as causing the unit to malfunction.
Unless your home is energy efficient, it is most likely you will be using your A/C even longer during summer to withstand the forecast spikes in daytime temperature. Make sure you clean your filters, or replace them if needed, for healthier indoor air quality. In addition to cleaner air, keeping your air filters clean also helps to reduce your energy consumption by 5% to 15%.
Check and clean your filters twice a month throughout the summer, particularly if there have been dust storms or during the fire season. You will need to do this even more frequently if your home has not been adequately draught proofed.
Shade Your Home
An effective way to reduce the impact of summer heat in your home is to prevent the sun from hitting the walls or glass in the first place.
Here are some low-cost ways to apply shading in the key areas of your home.
Good Solutions: Install cost effective shading inside your home.
Install Renshade on your windows and pergolas, a cheap way to cut down 85% of radiant heat from your windows and pergolas. It can be removed in the winter to allow winter sun to warm the room, then reinstated in summer when the hot weather starts again.
Install heavy curtains on tracks to cover your windows.
Install Invisible Pelmets on top of your curtain tracks to reduce the convective current that is setup when heating and cooling your home.
Better Solutions: Divert the sunlight at your window
Install light-coloured awning blinds over your windows
Hang your awning blinds from the eaves, not against your wall
Install shade cloth on areas that are directly facing the sun to prevent sun strike
Best Solutions: Apply external shading
Use deciduous vines as shading on your pergolas, yes its a long term strategy!
Fit roll down blinds at verandah or eave edge, particularly useful on the western side where the sun’s rays will strike directly against your home as the sun sets.
Install shade sails to stop sun strike. Shading away from your walls is critical.
Know when to open and close your doors and windows
Keep the heat out of your home by closing your doors and windows during the hottest time of the day. As the sun rises, make sure your eastern areas are protected from the sun. As the sun moves overhead and then to the west, ensure you keep your window coverings in place to stop the sun.
As the air outside cools at night, open your windows and doors to vent out the hot air and reset your home for a cooler start the next morning. This is particularly important in heatwave conditions.
Seal off draughts and ventilation leaks
Check your chimneys, doors, windows, floorboards and vents for gaps and cracks. While it’s great that your air conditioner is blowing cool air into your rooms, this can go to waste in the presence of a draught home. These seemingly insignificant holes when combined can be the equivalent of have a window fully open all year. So draughts in your home can leak out your cooled air and draw in hot summer winds from outside.
When you do find sources of air leaks, seal them right away with these cost-effective DIY draught proofing solutions, starting with the largest gaps first:
Plug up your chimneys with Chimney Draught Stoppers
Seal your exhaust fans when not in use with a Draft Stoppa
- Draught proof your doors with Australia’s best dynamic duo Draught Dodgers and Draught Excluder– These two draught proofing components apply a tight seal around all types of doors and windows.
- Draught Dodgers are heavy-duty seals that block off air leaks on the sides of doors and windows.
- For preventing air transfer at the bottom of doors, the “RP3 Draught Excluder” is most commonly used for single inward opening timber doors. There’s a wide selection of draught proofing solutions specially made for doors and windows, for more information
Window can be notoriously leaky – Draught proof your windows with Draught Dodgers for Awning Windows, or Draught Dodgers for Double Hung windows will seal them once and for all without impacting on their ability to open or close
UltraClear Invisible Sealant – This flexible, odour-free sealant that is white when applied but turns clear as it dries is used for sealing gaps and cracks found in wooden floors, skirting boards, architraves, and air vents.
NOTE: Do not draught proof a room that uses a gas appliance. The risk of carbon monoxide poisoning is real.
Beef up your home insulation
Insulation is another cost-effective solution to increase your home’s energy efficiency and maintain your thermal comfort all year round. It serves as a barrier that obstructs the summer heat infiltrating your home, keeping your rooms cooler even in the peak of a heatwave. Insulation also prevents your cooled air from escaping.
High-quality insulation material like polyester can give you the maximum protection you need in summer as well as in the winter time. It is non-allergenic, doesn’t hold moisture, and is rodent-resistant. Polyester doesn’t shrink and loses its effectiveness so it’s guaranteed to last up to 50 years. Like all insulation sold in Australia, it will not carry a flame.
These three types of insulation can give your home the protective benefits during the sweltering months:
Ceiling insulation – Stops the energy sapping heat descending from your roof cavity through your plasterboard ceiling into your rooms.
Wall insulation – Prevents heat flow through your walls and reduces outside noise.
Underfloor insulation – Stops outside hot outside air from rising through your floor and up to your rooms. It keeps your home much quieter too!
Keep Yourself Cool
It is most important that you keep your cool all day long! Before the summer heat waves start:
Put your shading in place
Close your curtains/windows/doors during the day
Wear loose clothing
Drink plenty of water
Stay in touch with neighbours
Keep your phone charged and close by
For those in fire danger areas, listen to Radio 774 for updates
Implement these 6 tips during summer to stay comfortable in your home without burning cash on your cooling bills. If you need assistance in improving your comfort in the most energy-efficient way possible, contact ecoMaster. We’ve been making Australian homes more comfortable with less energy for nearly two decades. We can certainly help with solutions for your home. Call us on 1300 326 627 or email [email protected]
Here is an online magazine that explains what we did to our home over the course of a few years to make it the haven that it is now.
Remember – its journey. There is no need to rush at it. Take one step at a time. ecoMaster is here to help you. If this is all too much and you want some hand-holding along the journey, you can start off by getting a deep insight into your home’s overall energy efficiency performance. We conduct a thorough ecoHome Assessment in various areas in Victoria. From there, we will craft a specific home retrofit plan for you which you can perform in increments based on your budget, or all at once, or take the DIY path.
If DIY is your thing, you can discover more energy-efficient draught-proofing solutions that bring in maximum thermal comfort in your home without draining your pockets! Shop for a wide range of excellent home retrofit solutions for greater thermal comfort at www.ecoMasterStore.com.au
To progress your journey towards an energy-efficient home that loves you all year round call 1300 326 627 or email : [email protected]