The oppressive waves of summer heat that bear down on every Australian holiday tradition are as unavoidable as the festive music in every supermarket at the same time of year. It seems to many like we Aussies are doomed to a life of sweltering holidays around the New Year, and while that isn’t necessarily a bad thing for many, it can ruin the celebration for those of us that are susceptible to the heat.
There are ways around this heatwave dilemma, and not all of them involve air conditioning units or whole days spent in the cool safety of Kmart, either. We explore some of these ways in this, our 7 tips for keeping your festivities free from the heat.
Effective year round in blocking out the light of the outside world, these blinds also block out heat when you get the insulative variety. The result of these curtains being installed correctly is a total blockage of the heat and light from outside, keeping the inside of your house cool and dark while you’re away and allowing you to come home from work to a comfortably cold home.
Keeping the airflow in your home moving is part and parcel to keeping yourself and your guests cool during your celebrations. It can be tough to know how to organise the opening and closing of windows to prevent hot air from coming in, but shade outdoors is the key to coolness indoors.
Try arranging some kind of all-day shade by one main window before the day gets hot, and the constant shade will keep the air in that spot cool all day. This way, cool air from that spot can flow into your house naturally, despite the heat outside.
It’s a pretty straightforward suggestion, but a variety of cool drinks can help to keep you and your guests cool and hydrated, however alcohol content has to be kept at the forefront of your mind. A frosty beer can help to cool you down just as fast as iced water, but beer will dehydrate you.
Dehydration restricts your sweat glands in the amount of sweat they can produce, which can lead to you overheating. Balance your alcohol consumption with water consumption and you will be cool and hydrated at the same time.
Air conditioning is the most effective form of cooling down your home, but it is also one of the more costly ones. Running air conditioning regularly in the summer, especially when you have many warm bodies in your home driving up the temperature, can double or even triple your electricity bill at the end of the quarter. Keep an eye on your usage and you should be ok.
A small, inflatable pool can make all the difference to you and your guests on a hot, sunny day. Large, in-ground permanent pools are more luxurious, sure, but a temporary pool, even a large one, is more economical and less maintenance.
Many department stores sell affordable, inflatable pools that even come with small filters for water cleanliness, which leaves you with plenty of cash left in your bank account and a cooling installation in your backyard.
Evaporative cooling could be considered the environmentally-friendly way to cool your house to similar effect to air conditioning. The way it works is to drag hot air in through the unit and blow it through a wet sponge-like pad, evaporating the liquid and cooling the air in the process.
It uses less electricity than traditional air con and cools just as quickly, however you have to install it permanently in your home, so it has it’s financial drawbacks too.
Shade sails take your sun-soaked backyard and drape the majority of it in blissful shade. Secured firmly to a minimum of two locations, shade sails allow enough sunlight through so your grass won’t die from a lack of light, but restrict enough that you won’t get sunburned while under them.
They have an expensive cost associated if you need to install anchor points in your backyard, however if you have existing, sturdy anchor points this cost will be significantly less intimidating.
These tips will ensure that no matter what your budget is, your home can cool down and stay cool in the blistering, cruel heat of summer.