During an extremely cold weather snap, you may be begging for heat gain. However, you certainly won’t be saying this when the weather in your region starts to get extremely hot towards the beginning of the summer. Heat gain is something that happens when your home is not entirely protected from the elements. Basically, the sunlight beating down on your windows and your roof can cause your home’s temperature to rise. If you have the air conditioner blasting, the heat gain can affect its efficiency. So, it is important to find ways to keep this heat gain at bay. Here are five effective ways to lower your home’s heat gain.
Exterior shades. If you live in a region that gets particularly hot in the summer, you may need a little extra protection from the sun. If your home’s heat gain is unbearable during that dreaded time of the year, you may need to install outdoor shades on the windows that get the most sunlight. Having these shades will prevent the warm UV rays from even touching the windows, so you get almost no sunlight pouring in, which can drastically reduce the heat gain in your home.
Indoor shades. If you want to ramp up your efforts to reduce heat gain, you will probably want to install indoor shades as well. Indoor shades can often be better than outdoor shades, because you can always open them at night instead of having to leave the house to open and close them. Indoor shades, though, can be less effective, because they still allow the warmth from the sun to heat up your windows, which can actually heat up your home. So, you may want to install reflective shades that reflect the sunlight instead of absorb it.
Re-insulate. You may not realize it, but re-insulating your home can protect against heat gain. It is pretty simple to imagine – if you don’t want the exterior temperatures to affect the indoor temperatures, you want to make sure that your walls are properly protected so that the outdoor air doesn’t seep in. When you want to let some fresh air in, you can always crack a window, but when you want to reduce heat gain, insulation will certainly do the trick. You may even want to consider an energy recovery ventilator to further reduce heat gain.
Deciduous trees. The power of a single tree can be amazing when you are trying to reduce the heat gain in your home. A single deciduous tree can act like a giant air conditioner for your home. In fact, the air blowing against your home can be cooled by up to 15 degrees if it is filtered through a deciduous tree. The same goes if you plant hedge or any other flora along the perimeter of your home.
Awnings. If you want to give your home an aesthetic touch while at the same time cooling down the heat gain, awnings can do a great job. When it comes down to it, a strategically placed awning can significantly reduce heat gain. You may even want to install retractable awnings, because another brutal winter will be just around the corner and you’ll need the sunlight.