We are now in full fall and gearing towards winter. The temperatures have dropped quite a bit by now but not too long ago it was incredibly hot. I started writing this over the summer and am finally getting back to it now, so keep that in mind as you read on.
Our electric bill in the summer is usually crazy expensive! I hate being in the San Fernando Valley when it's hot. Our house was built in the mid 1950's. People must have been more tolerant of being uncomfortable back then. We had no insulation in either the ceiling or walls making it difficult to stabilize the inside temperature. No matter how long the AC runs it never cools down. Then we made some changes to the house and the bill and my hatred have both been tamed!
First we added insulation! That was a big move!
Next we added more shade to our back patio by doing this:
We used sailing sails. I shared more about it here.
We covered the area between the house and the carport with shade sails. I shared more here.
And we used exterior curtains which I wrote about here.
The entire back wall of the house which is usually fully exposed to the sun is now shaded! The electric bill went from $1000-1200 every two months to the $700 range! The house has on many occasion been TOO COLD in the summer. We've had to turn the AC off!!!! I can't even believe I'm writing this!
Before the changes, during the months of June, July, August, September and part of October the AC ran non-stop! Now we don't turn the air on until noon on a 100 degree day and 2-3pm on an average summer day. It stays on until around 6-7pm. We get in the pool so we turn it off again and then we turn it on when we are getting ready for bed. Three out of four of us need it cool to sleep well. Majority rules.
I've noticed that even when it's 80 degrees inside the house it's tolerable because it's shady. But if it's 80 degrees with the sun hitting you then it's unbearable. The shade has helped tremendously!
Labels: outdoor living, shade