and cuisine but also in terms of climatic conditions. While every season has its own beauty, character and charm, Indian summers can be overwhelming at times for obvious reasons. Though the summers are over in many cities in India some cities, on the other hand, are still experiencing sweltering days. In my part of the world, the weather is quite pleasant now but summers were definitely uncomfortable and here is what I learnt this summer.
First, let’s understand how heat enters your home. There are three ways heat transfers into your home:
Convection: It is the flow of heat from a hot region to a cold region. In simple words, it means that heat rises. Hot air is lighter so it rises up, therefore, upper floors in a building are always hotter than the lower ones.
Conduction: It is the transfer of heat energy from the hot objects to the colder. If there is a greater temperature difference between two objects then heat always gets transferred to a cold object.
Radiation: It is energy that comes from a source and travels in the form of waves through space or a material medium. Roof and walls of our homes remain exposed to the sun throughout the day and absorb the solar radiation all the while. This results in the heat gain and increases the temperature inside our homes.
Now that we know how heat enters and gets trapped in our homes, it is easier for us to find out the ways to combat the heat. Below are some easy and smart tips to keep your house cool naturally.
1. Cross Ventilation:
Opening and closing the doors and windows at the right time when the air is pleasantly cool can replace the stagnant hot air with the cooler air. Keeping all the doors and windows at opposite ends open in the early mornings and at nights allows the fresh air to circulate throughout the home and helps in bringing down the temperature of your home. The key is to keep windows open when outside temperature is cooler than it is inside and keeping them closed when it’s hotter outside. This way warm air trapped inside your home due to convection can be removed easily.
2. Use Khus Curtains:
Another way to reduce the heat that builds up due to convection is to use khus khus curtains. It is an age-old method to keep the houses cool naturally. The dried roots of vetiver or khus weaved together with coir and straw make for a curtain with an organic look and pleasant earthy aroma. Khus khus blinds have to be kept wet to bring down the indoor temperature. Khus curtains not only add to the aesthetics of the house but also keep it light and airy.
3. Add Greens:
Another effective way to block the heat is to go green. Growing garden on the roof can help in reducing the temperature of the rooms below. Mud used for growing plants acts as an insulator by absorbing the heat, water and shades of the plants create a cooling effect around them. Placing the potted plants in balcony restricts the heat to enter the home. Bringing outdoors in not only helps in lowering the temperature but also cleanses the air inside the house.
A room packed with furniture feels hot as bulky furniture placed closely to each other can create hot air pockets. De-clutter and move the furniture to create some free space so that fresh air from the windows can flow and circulate easily around the room. This way you can also minimize the effect of conduction
5. Use The Light & Right Fabric:
Dress up your home in a lightweight fabric like cotton and linen in soothing shades of blue, green and yellow. Avoid using dark and synthetic fabrics since dark colours absorb more heat whereas light coloured fabrics reflect the heat. Replace wool rugs with refreshing and lighter cotton rugs. Use lightweight curtains that breathe like cotton fabric and sheers that allow the light and wind to enter your home. Keep the curtains drawn during the daytime to protect the room from getting heated by direct sunlight.
6. Minimize The Use Of Electronic & Electric Appliances:
We all know that electronic devices and electric appliances generate heat even when they are idle. Turn off all the appliances when not in use. Incandescent lights emit a lot of heat so it is better to use CFL or LED lights instead. Minimize the usage of all the electronic and electrical appliances so that heat generated by these machines doesn’t trap inside the house.
7. Ban The Sun:
This is the smartest way to keep the indoors cool in summers. I have already discussed above that radiation doesn’t need any medium to transfer the heat energy. Infrared radiation from the sun is responsible for warming the Earth’s surface. Limiting the amount of solar radiation to enter our homes can help in keeping the indoors cool. Is there any way to do that. Yes, of course. The Sun Ban reflective glasses from Saint-Gobain are specially coated glasses that reflect the solar radiation like UV and IR rays while still allowing just the right amount of natural light into a home. The coating on Sun Ban glasses prevents doors and windows from absorbing the heat and helps in keeping the house cool which in turn, cuts the electricity bill. So the best part of these hard coated glasses is that they allow the sunlight enter your home but reflect the sun-heat back out. These glasses are aesthetically appealing and come in a range of colours that makes the house look contemporary and stylish. Based on the star ratings and thickness the Sun Ban glasses can be chosen for different areas and can be used in windows, staircase glazings, doors, facades and balconies.
Sun Ban solar control glasses offer several benefits like:
- Protection from harmful UV rays
- Privacy during the daytime
- Ample natural light
- Reduce the glare
- Control the heat
- Energy efficiency
- Enhance the aesthetics
After knowing so many benefits of the Sun Ban reflective glasses, I’m planning to replace the regular glasses of all the windows in my home. After all, it will result in a huge saving.
In a similar way, reflective tiles can be installed on the roof. These tiles reflect the radiation and lower the temperature of the rooms below. Another cheaper way to insulate the roof is to apply a layer of white lime wash on the terrace and balcony which acts as a reflective surface and prevents the slab from absorbing the heat. But remember this is not a permanent solution as this coat will wash away in monsoon and you will have to apply it again every summer.
That’s all for today dear readers. I hope you find this blog informative and the tips and ideas I shared here help you in keeping your home cool every summer. See y’all soon.
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