Posted on: 13 July 2018
Summer and its accompanying heat have arrived in most parts of the country, and beating the heat to stay cool is a goal that many have on a daily basis. However, even as the temperature outside heats up, your home's interior temperature does not need to increase in a similar manner. There are many improvements you can make to your home's interior and exterior to help you stay cool in the protection of your home. Here are some ways you can help make your home more cool during the hottest days of summer.
Check and Maintain Your Home Insulation
When your home is inefficient at keeping its interior cooler in the summer or warm in the winter, it is likely due to the transfer of heat either into or out of your home. And the most common place for heat to transfer into or out of your home is through its ceiling and roof, which is usually caused by inefficient insulation. For this reason, it is important to make sure your home's insulation levels are adequate for your climate.
To check your home's insulation levels, it is best to have an insulation technician come to your home and check your home insulation's R-value. Depending on the type, age, and condition of the insulation, it may be a good idea to update and supplement your levels. This can greatly reduce the transfer of heat in and out of your home, making it more comfortable and more energy efficient.
If your home has batting insulation, which was a popular low-cost option, the insulation can sag over time, causing gaps to form between the rolls. And batting insulation in your attic can easily become moved and shifted around when you move storage items in and out of your attic space. These gaps can create inefficiencies in your home's ability to remain comfortable.
It is a good idea to update your insulation with something like a blown-in foam insulation, which will fill in all the cracks and crevices within your walls. Blown-in foam insulation can also be installed without having to remove wall panels, and it will harden to become a durable layer of air-tight protection against heat transfer in winter and summer.
Plant Appropriate Landscaping
The types of landscaping you have around your home in your front and backyard can affect the temperature and comfort of your yard, and it has a direct correlation on your home's interior temperature. In fact, surfaces shaded by trees in your yard will reduce their temperature by anywhere from 20 to 45 degrees F compared to non-shaded surfaces.
Planting trees that shade your yard, paved driveway, exterior walls, and the roof can reduce the amount of solar radiation that is absorbed into these surfaces, reducing the heat-island effect in your yard. Planting a lawn and other vegetation can cause evapotranspiration, which puts moisture into the air to additionally cool your yard by up to 9 degrees F. These changes can result in the air temperature of your yard being lower, less heat being absorbed onto your home's exterior walls and roof, and less heat being transferred into your home through the windows, roof, and ceiling.
It can be most helpful to plant trees strategically in your yard to provide shade onto dark-colored paved surfaces and the exterior of your home and windows during the hottest part of the day. Trees planted on the southern and southwestern sides of your home can have the most impact on your home's ability to stay cooler, and they will reduce the amount you need to run your air conditioner. Just take care to not plant trees too closely to your home's foundation or to concrete pavement, as their root growth can cause damage in later years.Share