No matter how well a home is designed and built, if the interior climate is not comfortable all year round, there is a flaw in there that needs to be corrected. There are various solutions to creating a steady and comfortable climate in a home, but certain criteria need to be met to make them viable and worthwhile.
This article takes a look at interior climate control in a home and the various solutions to attaining and maintaining it correctly.
The obvious initial solution is to install a whole house heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC) that can cope with wide variances of external temperature while maintaining a comfortable and even internal temperature throughout the year. While this option is probably the most effective, it also comes at a considerable cost to the user.
Prices for big HVAC systems vary but they are expensive for the most part. Not only are purchase and installation costs high, but the ongoing cost of running the system all year round can cripple most average family budgets.
The high (and rising) cost of electricity makes these large, energy hungry installations a luxury item that few can reasonably afford in this day and age. There are, however, cheaper and more energy friendly solutions available.
Evaporative Cooling Systems
One such solution for keeping a home cool in the hot summer months is the evaporative cooling system, better known as the swamp cooler. This type of climate control works on the principle of using evaporated water to absorb the heat and chill the air passed through it. A more detailed explanation can be found here: http://ventless-portable-air-conditioners.blogspot.com where the main differences between these devices and more traditional AC is also explained.
These evaporative cooling devices are often mistakenly referred to as portable air conditioners that are vent free, although the truth is that true AC must always be vented to the outside to carry the hot air they produce as a result of the heat exchange process out of the room. Since a swamp cooler is not a true AC and doesn't produce any hot air, there is no need for it to be vented, which is where the confusion may originate alongside their visual similarity to free standing ACs.
This system works extremely well in hot, dry climates and can reduce a room's temperature by as much as thirty degrees Fahrenheit. Unfortunately, it does not fare so well in humid climates, where its effectiveness is greatly reduced the higher the level of humidity that is already present in the air.
Portable Air Conditioners
Another lower cost solution to the large "whole house" systems for cooling is the smaller, portable air conditioning units. These can be deployed in the rooms that are occupied and as they use less energy than larger systems, they can represent a saving in ongoing energy usage.
This is a better solution for people who live in humid climates that need some form of artificial air cooling in hot weather. It is also worth noting that there are portable swamp coolers that are by far the cheapest cooling solution available, but as noted above, these are only effective in dry climates.
In winter, there are other considerations such as keeping a home warm while the mercury drops outside. Several solutions exist that have their merits depending upon where you live and the availability of local resources.
In areas where there is a plentiful supply of wood for fuel, wood burning stoves and furnaces can represent an ideal heating option for homes from an economical standpoint. These heating solutions provide heat for the home as well as hot water.
Other solutions comprise whole house central heating systems that can be powered by natural gas, propane, oil, coal or wood. There also exists electrically powered central heating systems, but these are the most expensive to run and their popularity is waning.
Houses that are well insulated from the outside weather and temperature fare best with internal solutions that can become extremely economical to run thanks to far less wastage than a non-insulated house can provide for. Insulation is covered in a separate article and so will not be expanded upon here.
The best climate control solution for a certain home depends on several criteria, such as location, availability of resources and cost affordability. A well insulated home can provide a comfortable and attractive climate that can be enjoyed at a much lower cost in terms of energy consumption and prices in all weathers and is a major consideration as part of the overall solution for any home.