Prepare your home to keep cool

October 2013

With an early start to summer, now is the time to get your home into shape so you can keep your cool over the next few months.

Ausgrid’s energy efficiency expert Paul Myors said there were simple steps we could all take to stay cool without burning holes in our pockets or needing air conditioners.

The goal is to prevent heat from entering your home, or removing it with low energy techniques such as ventilation.

As well as insulation, it’s important to reduce heat gain by shading windows and external walls, and this can be achieved with well designed awnings or eaves. The best solution prevents direct sunlight from entering living areas in summer, but allows it in during winter to provide passive heating.

Garden landscaping can also play a role, by locating trees to block direct sun from entering the home, or by growing deciduous vines on pergolas.

Natural ventilation is one of the key elements for keeping your home cool. For new homes or renovations, building orientation should be chosen to maximise exposure to cooling breezes. However, even for existing homes it is possible to encourage cross flow ventilation by opening windows or doors to create air paths through the building.

Fans use much less energy than an average air-conditioner. If you can effectively keep the heat out and maximise natural ventilation, ceiling fans can often be enough to be comfortable in summer, reducing summer energy bills by up to 10%.

For more tips to prepare your home for summer, visit www.ausgrid.com.au/waystosave.

Cross ventilation