Advice
December 2021

4 ways to cool your home in summer

Rising temperatures got you into a sweat? We explore four cool-down options for effectiveness and cost-efficiency.

Member comments

Get access to comment

lynda S.
18 Jan 2022
Heatpumps all the way here!

I have one in my lounge & OMG it's heaven to have on in this incredible hear (we have been over 30 for over a week, 32 again today). Turn it on to 20, fan speed 3 about 11am, sometimes run it overnight, although I do have a small tower fan in my bedroom which I usually run overnight. Money well spent (especially as I have respiratory issues) - doesn't put my power bill up too much & put a bit more aside each fortnight as the AC function uses more power than heat function. Daikin are a fantastic brand (don't have one in this house as Mitsi Elecftric Heavy Duty already installed when I purchased but it's great also).

Susan O.
03 Jan 2022
About open windows...

I lived in Perth for a few years and their tactics for a cool house is NOT to open the windows but where practical to keep curtains closed to incoming heat from the sun. I have found this extremely effective when I get no breeze at all. Open windows only work in some houses - sadly not in mine where I live.

Jill B.
08 Jan 2022
Curtains

I agree...keep double glazed doors closed against the heat coming in. Ditto curtains. If breeze arises open doors. Later in the day if breeze present open both.

Megan C.
24 Mar 2020
Consumer, you can do better!

I'm looking at Consumer for information on fans. This article is the only thing I've founds far and it is useful, but it would be improved with a link to Consumer's assessment of fans or any comment that tests have not been done.

Loraine H.
17 Jul 2020
A bewildering array

Help. Me Too. We're installing fans in our new build and I've studied every article I can on sizes, motors, shapes, construction, speed, etc., and visited lighting shops where you can't really tell which are the quietest as they're hanging from a shop ceiling not in a home environment. It would be sooooooo helpful to read reviews and see brand recommendations.

Ian M.
24 Dec 2021
Fan performance metrics

Blowing hot air out of the house is always the best use of a fan not just at night. Obviously you want a fan to be quiet, but the key metric in how well a fan will do this is flow rate (and maybe pressure), something that is conspicuously missing from specs of nearly all fans sold in NZ. Really this is not good enough. Consumers have absolutely no way of knowing how good a fan they might buy will perform. There is an excellent review on Youtube comparing an expensive Dyson fan with a $15 fan, the $15 dollar pumps more air and is quieter for less than 100th of the price. Personally I bought a Mitsibishi pedestal which pushes 65m3/min. AFAIK these are no longer sold in NZ, good luck finding anything that comes close in flow/noise performance.

Chris O.
22 Feb 2020
Roof colour

Not for nothing are traditional Mediterranean houses white; they reflect the heat. On a nice hot day the sun hits your roof with energy of about 1000 watts per square meter. A white roof will reflect most of it, a dark or black roof with absorb most of it. In other words a black roof on a typical 150 sq meter house absorbs about 150 Kw, or 200 horsepower. This is a HUGE amount of energy; some is re-radiated, but a lot is able to make it's way thru the insulation to the inside of the house. The insulation only slows it down; it does not stop all of it. So the first step to a cooler house is to paint your roof with a high reflectivity (very light coloured or white) paint. It can also have a helpful additive that reflects Infra-red rays to keep even cooler. Try putting your hand on various coloured cars on a hot day and you will quickly see what I mean! Cheers! Chris

Discerninator
03 Jan 2022
Thanks

Good points to consider!

Robert L.
22 Feb 2020
Exhaust fans really work.

We installed a fan in our attic access hatch which blows up into the attic. Our roof is concrete tiles so not totally airtight. In the evening we turn on the fan and close all of the windows except for the one over our bed. The fan draws the cooler outside air in over our bed and also forces the hot air out of the attic. (Too many New Zealand attic spaces are almost airtight and so the heat built up during the day keeps the house too warm at night.)

michele t.
08 Jan 2022
Definitely.

Have a new Villa - has an entrance/hatch to the Attic. I keep it part-way open during the heat of the day, and open the garage door slightly - the home cools down considerably and when I need to use my air conditioner - the air is super cold in all rooms.