When I think of climate control, I always think of my grandmother. She still uses old bedsheets to cover all the windows in the house when it’s above 27 degrees Celsius. In the past years, the summer was dryer and hotter than ever measured in the Netherlands. So it’s time to think about climate control in a Dutch house with budget friendly suggestions.
Working at home
New houses are normally well insulated, but the heat can’t go out easily. Until a few years ago, that was not something to worry about, only a few days a year. But due to the climate change it is getting more urgent and I expect that in the near future regulations will change according newly built houses. Sometimes working in a house with no air-conditioner is a challenge many of us now phase in Covid-19 times, including myself. So it is time to investigate to keep a house more cool in this season. What is important for you? Environmental friendly, comfort or maybe the costs? Personally, I am in doubt. Having an air-conditioner is easy, but also expensive, energy consuming and sometimes noisy. A green roof means that solar panels not an option any more.
Budget friendly suggestions for climate control in your Dutch house
- Do you have a flat roof? You can paint your roof white so the sun will reflect more. Disadvantage: in the winter you need to heat the house more.
- Use sunscreens or white cloth on the outside of your windows.
- Close curtains when you are not using a room.
- Open your windows early in the morning and late at night, and let the wind blow through your house. Close it again when it is getting warmer.
- Plant some climbing plants against the facade.
- Plant a tree in your garden. Trees evaporate a lot of water, which makes your garden less warm.
- When you are really hot, take a cold water bath for your feet! Out of experience: this really works. Cold feet cool your body down.
Some other suggestions which are not so budget friendly are: purchasing and installing air co or air cooler.
What can help too is making your roof green with plants. The costs are around €2.500,00 for a 50 square meter roof. This is seen as an environmental friendly way to insulate your roof and therefore some municipalities will subsidize this. Check here.
Or what about putting your mechanic ventilation on a high level when it is colder outside than inside? Yes, it will cost you some energy, but no extra costs to purchase when you already have it in your house.
There is also the possibility when the central heating system needs to be renewed to change the system for a “warmtepomp” or heat pump. That is an investment (around €5.000,-), but during the winter it will cost less energy to heat your house and in the summer the pump can cool your house. Not every house is suitable, but maybe worth investigating?
And last but not least: Do you have a unit for heat reclaim, in Dutch a “wtw-unit or warmteterugwininstallatie”? For some systems there is also a cooler, which you can install on the installation you already have.
We take some precautionary measures when needed. We hang some extra shade cloths in our garden, so the facade doesn’t warm up too much. Also, some raspberries grow up to the facade, and we enjoy the delicious harvest at the moment. The curtains are closed when we are not in the room, and we open the windows in the morning and evening. The use of the mechanical ventilation on high in the night we will put in practise, and we will survive the summer heat for sure.
Are there other issues with your house and want to know more about that? Don’t know where to begin? Feel free to ask for a free one on one meeting.