If you’re feeling the heat, your home may not be the soothing sanctuary you’re craving. Most British houses and flats are built to retain heat rather than let it escape – cosy in the winter, but a sweaty nightmare on the warmest days of the year!
Read on for some ingenious ways of cooling your home down, from making the most of fans, to clever decor changes you might not have considered but which can have a serious impact.
How to keep your home cool in summer
Invest in a decent fan
With so many people now working from home and turning parts of their living spaces into offices, it’s important to keep those spaces feeling fresh. It’s an obvious one, but investing in a decent fan will keep the air moving, helping it to stay fresh and cool. For extra cooling, place a bowl of ice in front of your fan. As the ice melts it’ll make the moving air feel even cooler!
Check out our round-up of the best small fans, perfect for desks or bedside tables, including handy USB chargeable fans that can plug right into your computer.
Choose your summer bedding carefully
Choosing natural materials for duvets, pillows and bedding pays dividends all year round. Linen and cotton are popular summer fabrics, but they’re not the only options. You might assume wool bedding would make you hot at night, for instance, but that’s not the case. Wool allows air to circulate and improves your bedclothes’ breathability.
Don’t miss our pick of the summer bedding options on the high street this year.
Take a warm bath, not cool
A cool bath may seem like an obvious – and tempting – idea when you’re feeling the heat. However, the cooling effect will soon wear off when you step out. When you climb out of the warm water, however, your body temperature drops, mimicking the change your body experiences when you’re falling asleep. Try a warm bath 60-90 minutes before bed to help you asleep faster.
Buy a two-temperature duvet
Men tend to have a higher body temperature than women, which is why there are so many summertime disagreements over duvets – and an argument is the last thing you need on a hot summer night. If you and your partner have different ideal sleeping temperatures, try a dual-tempo duvet. These clever duvets are made of two halves, one lighter and one thicker – so both of you can sleep in comfort!
Get smart blinds
To prevent your home turning into a greenhouse in hot weather, fit honeycomb blinds. Their structure traps air inside, which helps to maintain the interior room temperature rather than letting heat seep in.
Some brands, like Duette, also include a coating on their window-facing side that helps them significantly reduce the amount of sunlight and glare entering your home, protecting your furniture and floorings from Sun damage. They have a pleated look and come in many colours and designs. Plus, they can be motorised if you have large windows
Make your curtains work for you
Now is a good time to swap heavy curtains for something lighter, such as voile panels. Draw them across an open window and you get the light and breeze you need without sacrificing privacy. You can buy some designer fabric and stitch your own or opt for readymade panels. If you find the light they let in during the evenings and mornings is too much for a bedroom, it might be an idea to buy black-out blinds. As well as keeping the room pitch black at night, they’ll also block out sunlight during the day, helping to keep the room cooler.
Consider air conditioning
The ultimate long-term solution, if your budget allows for it, air conditioning units are a staple of homes and businesses in warmer climes, but the UK has lagged behind for decades. However, with sweltering summer temperatures becoming the norm, more and more of us are investing in an AC unit.
If you’re desperate to get cool, BOXT is offering a next-day service – simply fill out the questionnaire on the website and it’ll help you choose a suitable homecooling package and connect you with a local engineer to book the installation. You’ll get a fixed price for the unit and the job, and have it installed within 24 hours.
Feature Alison Davison