A broadly discussed topic is winterizing the house or preparing it for the upcoming freezing temperatures. Sure, this is something that every homeowner should look into and ensure proper conditions indoors temperature-wise while lowering costs as much as possible during winter. However, summer creates the need for special conditions just as much.
We have been faced with severe heatwaves for a few years during the year’s warmer months. Without proper precautions, heatwaves can pose a danger to our lives because they raise the chances of overheating and heatstroke. Even when it’s not a heatwave, the constant high temperatures can make us uncomfortable.
When you are outside for your desired amount of time, you enjoy the perks of the warm season. But when you’re at home, you definitely want to enjoy thermal comfort and not have to sweat and feel overall uncomfortable because of indoor temperatures. For this reason, you have to weatherproof your home for summer.
With just a few tricks I will present in the following, you can keep the temperature indoors at an appropriate level while also reducing energy costs to maintain proper living conditions. So without further ado, let’s see what your best course of action is to prepare the house for summer.
The air conditioner is the reigning king of fighting the summer heat; there is no denying it. But when you have to install an AC unit, you will be faced with quite a tough pick; choosing between central and window-mounted models. Each type has its own set of perks, so to help you decide, let’s briefly discuss what each offers:
After you decide what type of air conditioner is best for your budget and demands, there is one more step to take before you buy one; sizing! You might be tempted to think that bigger is better, but this is, in fact, wrong. But if you pick an oversized air conditioner, it will waste energy and run less efficiently than it should.
One of the purposes of the AC, aside from regulating indoor temperature, is controlling humidity by wicking away excess moisture from the air it pulls in. When you install an oversized AC, it will reach the selected temperature too quickly, so it won’t have enough time to cycle the humid air. What I advise is that you learn the square footage of the space or spaces that you plan on using the air conditioning system for and match the BTU of the unit to the square footage. Doing so implies that the AC is appropriately sized for the space it will serve.
A common misconception is that insulating the house only benefits homeowners in winter. In fact, insulation prepares the home for summer, too, not only for the cold season. If the walls, ceilings, and floors are adequately insulated, less conditioned air will leak from your home to the outside. Automatically, it implies that the air conditioner won’t run as intensely to maintain your preferred temperature indoors. Therefore, lower costs and better conditions are the ultimate perks you gain from adding insulation.
Old-school windows have to go out ASAP. While replacing the windows in the entire house is expensive, it’s mandatory if you want to keep the heat out and the cool air in. Moreover, it is a project that helps reduce other costs, including the ones related to running cooling systems in the summer. So the investment will pay off for itself in a short while.
Replace your old windows with new energy-efficient windows that provide the extra insulation your home needs. These keep the cool air inside much better than their old-style counterparts, all while blocking the heat from entering. If you have the windows too recently and cannot afford to reinvest in energy-efficient models, you can add film to the glass to minimize solar heat gain.
Check the weather stripping on your windows each year before the beginning of summer and winter. If you notice it is worn or tattered, replace it immediately because it won’t serve its purpose correctly. This means it will let the cool air escape in summer and the cold air inside in winter. And you don’t want that to happen since it affects your home’s energy efficiency year-round.
All you need for this project is a putty knife, glue, and new strips. Check all the weather stripping and where you notice worn parts, remove them with the putty knife. Afterward, glue on new strips to replace the ones you took down. It’s as easy as that. You can do this independently if you have minimal DIY skills and save the money you would have spent on hiring a professional.
Even after you replaced your old windows with new, energy-efficient models and fixed the weather stripping, there are still changes that you can make to this specific part of the house to keep the temperature in check during summer. And what I am referring to is that you put thermal curtains over all the windows. Their purpose is to block out the sun and heat.
It’s a one-time expense that pays off almost immediately since, thanks to the curtains, your AC won’t work as hard to keep the temperature in check. With less heat and sun entering your home, it will feel cooler even when you don’t run any cooling appliances. Your electric bills will be significantly lower during summer since you won’t need much assistance to create proper living conditions.
Nature might be giving us the short straw regarding the values our thermometers register during summer days, but it can also be our savior. Only if we know how to use what it offers, of course. When controlling the indoor environment during hot weather, you can use landscaping tricks to your advantage. I am referring to planting trees that grow tall and provide natural shade to your home.
The trees block the sun’s rays, so there is less heat inside the house, thanks to them. The load on your also AC is lighter as a result. Needless to say, there is the extra perk that more greenery adds to curb appeal. Your property will look much nicer if you plant more trees in the yard, which ups the house’s sale value if you plan on moving in the future. Birds also love making nests in the trees, so if you like waking up to their happy chirping sounds, you will definitely enjoy this idea.
Most of us wait eagerly for summer to come and rock our nicest clothes, enjoy long walks, and simply relish in the beauty of nature. But that outdoor heat comes at a price because it also amps the temperature indoors. This is, of course, unless you weatherproof your home, as I instructed in this article. Follow my advice, and you can maintain thermal comfort indoors instead of sweating and feeling like you can barely breathe because of the heat. By doing so, you avoid overheating and all the other unwanted health effects of high temperatures while creating a comfortable environment in your home so that you may adequately unwind.
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