Summer is here, which means lovely long days, beach fun, Christmas festivities and holiday relaxation. However, it also means hot, sweaty 35-degree days that sometimes can be absolutely unbearable and in Durban you can add another few degrees due to the humidity. Don’t get me wrong, Summer time in KZN is amazing but you do need to know how to survive those blistering hot days. Here are a few tips that will keep you staying cool this sizzling Summer while also helping you save a few bucks.
The obvious way to stay cool is, of course, to install an air conditioner. Yes, it is the most expensive but it is also the most effective. However, we do have some tips to ensure you make the most of this investment and keep the costs down a bit.
Keep doors, windows and curtains closed in the room you have the aircon. This will keep the cool air in and the hot air out, helping you maintain a lekker 20 something degree temperature inside while it’s a scorching 30 something degree temperature outside.
Get the right size aircon for the room size. This common mistake could cost you more than you need or not cool your room as you hoped. Here is a rough guide but it would be best to ask the salesperson to be sure.
- 10m2 to 20m2 room – 2.6 kW unit
- 20m2 to 30m2 room – 3.5 kW unit
- 30m2 to 45m2 room – 5 to 6 kW unit
- 45m2 to 65m2 room – 7 to 8 kW unit
Once the room is sufficiently cooled by the aircon, switch it off and use a fan to circulate the cool air or switch to the fan mode on the aircon. This keeps the room feeling cool while saving some electricity as fans use less electricity than aircons.
If you move to different rooms during the day, a portable aircon will be a great help and money-saver. Instead of trying to cool the whole house with different aircons in various rooms, simply use a portable one to cool the room you are working in.
Get it serviced! You don’t want your machine to break down on you on a scorching day, plus getting it serviced will potentially increase its lifespan.
The next best option would be to install a ceiling fan. This is less costly than the aircon but still very effective. Fan tips to keep you cool and comfortable:
Switch off the fan when not in the room. Fans are ‘people-coolers’ not generally ‘room-coolers’ like aircons. The cooling effect from a fan is due to the wind chill effect it creates so switching it off when not in the room will save you electricity.
If a ceiling fan is not available, a desk or portable fan will do you wonders while trying to get your work done in the heat. A great trick, place a bowl of ice or an iced bottled below the fan. As the ice evaporates it adds moisture to the air and helps cool the air that the fan is blowing your way, lovely cool, fresh air.
Load shedding or power outages is one’s worst nightmare on a stinking hot day or night. Solar or battery-powered fans to the rescue. No power, no problem as this option will keep you cool regardless of Eskom’s plans.
When leaving a room switch off lights or reduce the number of lights on. Some older globes such as halogens and incandescent emit heat when on so leaving these types of lights on will add to the heat within a room.
A better option would be to change to LED globes. These emit less heat therefore avoiding the unnecessary excess heat. Plus, they have a much lower wattage which saves electricity.
4. Windows & Curtains
North-facing or north-east facing windows get direct sunlight throughout the day, East facing in the morning and West facing in the afternoon, which is great for natural light but on those hot days, it also means that heat radiates through the home and makes inside just as hot as outside.
Open windows at night & close them during the day. This allows the cooler night air to circulate through the house while keeping the hot air out of the house during the day.
If you have to keep windows open during the day, be sure to do it in a way that encourages a through draught in your home. In other words, open windows on opposite sides of the house and keep doors open to allow air to flow through freely.
Keep curtains/blinds closed. Yes, this is not great for natural light but it helps immensely in deflecting direct sunlight into your home which means far less heat radiating through it.
Use a bathroom fan/extractor fan when showering or bathing. This extracts the heat and humidity created by the hot water thus removing the excess heat created and helping maintain a cooler home.
Install a geyser timer. Maybe not so much a cooling tip but definitely a money saving one. One uses far less hot water in summer and setting a geyser timer to come on only when necessary will save you on your electricity bill.
We hope these tips and tricks will help you survive the scorching summer ahead whether at home or on holiday. May it be a great one for all after the crazy 2020 we have had. Stay safe and have a very merry Christmas and a happy festive summer.
Remember, if you require any of these above products or advice visit one of Northside Electrical's branches or call and chat to a security sales consultant to personally assist you with your specific security needs. Northside provides the KZN region with superior quality electrical, lighting and security products with remarkable service.
Red Hill - 031 569 1005 email@example.com
Ballito - 032 946 0977 firstname.lastname@example.org
Hillcrest – 031 765 4140
Umbilo – 031 942 7755