Summer temps can reach uncomfortable levels and we all look for ways to keep cool. Not everyone is lucky enough to have tall trees around their home.
About 1/3 of unwanted heat that builds up in your home comes in through the roof. One way to reflect some of this heat is to install a radiant barrier on the underside of your roof. A radiant barrier is a sheet of aluminum with a paper backing. When installed properly it can reduce heat gain through the roof by as much as 25%. Roofs can be painted with a light color heat-reflective paint which also keeps the building cooler.
Not opening windows during the day and blocking the sun goes a long way to keeping your home’s interior cool. Drawing curtains during the day also keeps your home cooler. Exterior solar shades installed on the Southern and Western exposures are extremely effective in keeping temps down. However, if the outside temperature falls below 70 degrees, it is a good idea to turn off the air conditioning and open the windows instead. Caulk around all windows and doors to prevent cool air from escaping in the Summer and warm air in the Winter.
Attic fans are especially effective if, at night when it’s cooler outside and the windows are open, the fan draws that cooler air inside pushing the warmer air out through attic vents. Ceiling fans work well when it is not extremely hot or humid because the movement of the air across your skin has a cooling effect. Even an oscillating room fan can make a difference.
Avoid using ovens or other heat producing appliances during the daytime hours and use dryers and dishwashers at night when temps are cooler.
Many homes have air conditioners, and there are steps you can take to save money and still be cool. Setting the thermometer at 78 degrees when you’re home and 80 degrees when you’re away will keep the house comfortable and save you money. Close the doors to rooms that are not being used – no need to cool them! Consider installing a programmable thermostat, preset to the money saving temperatures. When on vacation, consider turning the air conditioner off.
Energy Star is an Environmental Protection Agency program whose mission is to help businesses and individuals save money and protect the climate through energy efficiency. According to Energy Star, it is better to shade the outside of the window than the inside. In that regard, awnings are extremely effective in keeping a building’s interior cool.
In an article found in the Washington Post, the Department of Energy estimates that awnings can reduce solar heat gain (the amount temperatures rise because of sunshine) by as much as 65% on windows facing Southern exposures and 77% on those with Western exposures. Whether you choose one of the many styles of window awnings or a retractable over patio doors, the cooling effect is noticeable.
Call us today for your free in home estimate and experience the Dutchess Custom Awnings difference!