Hot weather brings so many joyful experiences. Swimming with the kids, dripping ice cream and Christmas lunches are what we look forward to all year – but with one looming worry: how can we make sure our house isn’t a sauna every day?
The answer is so much more than closing the blinds and diving head first into the freezer. In many climates, houses are set up to “trap” radiant heat in the colder months, but here in Australia we need flexible options to adjust for long periods of extreme heat. By using adjustable window furnishings and outdoor shading systems, you can effectively control your home’s climate, not just in summer, but all year round.
Glass and UV Rays
First thing’s first – glass. Unprotected glass is often the major source of heat entering your home but shading your glass windows and doors can majorly reduce rising indoor temperatures. When heat from the sun passes through your glass windows and fixtures, it is absorbed by your interior elements and re-radiates throughout the house. Re-radiated heat has a longer wavelength, making it almost impossible to pass back through glass, thus increasing the temperature in your home.
A common myth is that double glazing keeps your house cool. While it does help to keep the cold air in, it doesn’t keep the UV rays out. This is where passive designs principles can greatly assist in keeping the UV rays at bay. External blinds and awnings, for example, allow a natural cooling effect that also invites the Winter sun in for free heating. Watch out for badly designed fixed shading however – too much shade can reduce the amount of daylight in your home and leave you with only artificial lighting to fill the void. Passive cooling is also a far cheaper alternative to mechanical cooling, and if there’s one thing we need at this time of year, it’s spare change for Christmas presents!
Another form of passive cooling is internal blinds and window coverings. Shutters n Shades have a wide range of thermal insulating blinds and window shading solutions, whether you’re looking for a classic manual system, climate activated automated systems, or even smart systems that can be controlled with your phone or voice control! Adjustable shading gives you greater control over your level of daylight, as well as the natural view from your reading nook, kitchen or bedroom.
Something else to watch out for – dark colours. We’ve all felt the melt of sitting in a black car that’s been out in the sun all day, but did you know this also works for houses? Dark coloured exterior walls can be shaded to reduce summer heat, and conversely, light-coloured roofs can reflect 70% of summer heat gain.
Every home is designed differently, and Shutters n Shades have the customised solutions to make your summer months comfortable. We’re a family owned business with specialised knowledge and expertise in ensuring the family home is cool and comfortable. If you’re tossing and turning through too-warm nights, give us a call to chat about what we can do for you!