We Will Be Happy To Assist

How to Keep Your House Cool in Arizona

Summer temperatures in Phoenix can reach blistering temperatures, which makes keeping the temperature within the home very important for both safety and comfort. Fortunately, if you are considering a home remodel in Arizona, there are architectural design elements that you may choose to include in your project that can naturally keep the heat down inside of your home during hot summer months. 

Effective Strategies for Keeping Your Home Cool in the Arizona Heat

Evaluating Your Home’s Insulation Quality

Insulation is a worthwhile investment as it offers double rewards – keeps the heat out in summer and the heat in during winter.  When evaluating insulation quality in your home: 

  • Do a visual inspection of your home; examine doors and windows to identify gaps and cracks that could be leaking air from inside the home.
  • Monitor utility bill costs: sudden increases may indicate an air leak.
  • Persistently high energy bills are often a tell-tale sign that a home is poorly insulated.
  • An obvious sign is simply noticing a temperature difference when you enter a room, when that room is clearly a different temp than the rest of the home.  When this situation is noted, it is time to identify why this is happening and if you need to take any action to mitigate the energy loss.   

Selecting the Right Air Conditioning System

A critical component in keeping your home cool and comfortable in extremely hot weather is a well-functioning air conditioning system. There are a variety of air conditioning makes and models, so finding the right one for your home is an important step.

When shopping around for a suitable air conditioning unit, be sure to apply the following basic guidelines:

Determine the area of space that you want to be cool

You will want an air conditioning unit that has the capacity to adequately cool the size of your home.  In HVAC language, A/C units are measured by how many “tons” they are.  A ton represents how much heat a unit can remove from a home in one hour.  But the more tons an A/C unit is, the more costly.  Sometimes homeowners will try to save money on their A/C unit investment by purchasing a less expensive unit, but one that is underpowered (too few tons) for the volume of air required for their home.  Big mistake. Taking the measurements of all the rooms in your house including the hallways will help you identify how many tons you need in a unit.  Please make sure you invest in a new unit that is sufficient for your home’s needs. 

Factor in energy-efficiency

If high energy bills are a concern, then choosing an energy-efficient air conditioning unit is preferable. You can look for energy ratings as well as energy efficiency features in each of the units available to you.  As consumers are increasingly interested in energy efficient units, especially in hot areas like Phoenix, there are more and more energy efficient A/C options available to us.  If you are ready to buy a new unit anytime soon, be sure to inquire about the efficiency options and consider what that will mean to you during the coming years in your home.

Enhancing Heat Reduction Through Window Treatments

Window insulation is a vital part of keeping a home cool. Blackout blinds, adding weatherstripping, placing laminated plastic film on windows, and keeping air out by strategically placing thick pieces of insulation at the bottom of windows are some of the common strategies used to reduce heat transference from indoors to the outdoors.

Implementing Exterior Adjustments and Strategic Landscaping

You can protect your home from the invasion of outdoor heat by creating a barrier between the exterior of the home and the sun’s rays. This can be achieved by using ventilated or reflective roofs, installing external window shutters or awnings on the outside of windows, and using a lighter color on the roof’s surface. 

Using landscaping effectively is another popular way to prevent the heat from escaping into your home during summer. Effective landscaping is not only smart, but it is energy-efficient too.

Great landscaping ideas to cool down a home:

  • Plant trees that offer a canopy of shade over roofs and windows.  In Phoenix, Palo Verde, Mesquite and Desert Willow trees are popular choices.
  • Plant fast-growing vines to creep upwards on trellises to shade exterior walls.
  • Groundcover plants and rows of shrubs help keep the sun off driveways and patios.
  • Install water features such as a mister, fountain or pool that cools the air when air passes by.

Practices to Minimize Rising Temperatures Inside Your Home

There are many practices you can implement within your home to keep the summer heat out. Practices like the following are particularly beneficial to encouraging a cooler home:

Keep the drapes closed

Drawing down curtains and blinds works well to prevent, or at least mitigate, the sun’s rays from shining into interior spaces and raising indoor temps.

Avoid using the oven for long periods

The oven and other household appliances will generate more heat when used and will contribute to a warmer house in the summer.

Adjust ceiling fans

Homeowners should be aware that ceiling fans need to be adjusted according to each season. In the summer, ceiling fans should be set to push the air straight down, providing a stronger, more effective cooling effect.  In the winter months, the ceiling fan should push air straight up, creating a circular convection flow in the room. 

Innovations in Home Remodeling and Sustainability for Arizona’s Climate

Innovations in home construction include:

  • Incorporating natural building materials.
  • Using the latest available technology, such as energy-efficient systems.
  • Upgrading homes by installing solar panels.
  • For those homeowners who wish to capture monsoon rainwater to use for irrigation later in the year, the use of metal roofs that facilitate the collection of rain into water-collection barrels has become more popular.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Can You Cool Your Arizona House at Night?

High temperatures at night can make getting a good night’s sleep quite a challenge.  In addition to your A/C unit:

  • Use ceiling and ground fans strategically to improve airflow.
  • Keep window coverings closed during the day.
  • Make sure doors in the house are open so there is a free flow of air from room to room: if you’ve even been in a hot room with zero air movement, you know it right away.  It is uncomfortable.  Sometimes just opening a door will let enough air movement in to make a big difference in how we feel in that room.    

Tips for Minimizing Heat from Household Appliances

Unwanted heat from our electrical appliances can add to a rising temperature in our homes.  The following tips can be quite useful in avoiding unwanted heat:

  • Switch off unnecessary appliances at night.
  • Replace inefficient appliances.
  • Limit the use of heat-radiating appliances like the oven. Instead, use smaller kitchen appliances like an air fryer or microwave which inject less heat into the home.

Why Choose AZ Neighbor for Your Energy-efficient Home Remodel?

When remodeling your home to boost its energy efficiency, hiring an experienced home remodel contractor makes sense.  Our team has many years of experience and dozens of home remodels involving a focus on energy efficiency.  We are a full-service home remodel company and we take pride in the quality of our work and customer service.  Give us a call today to ask for more information about our services. 

Related post: Why is Stucco So Popular in Arizona Homes?