6 Ways To Create Cross Ventilation In A Single Window Room
In those hot, sultry summer months cross ventilation can bring some much welcome relief. In essence, it is the drawing in or harnessing of cool air through a room, either by natural or mechanical means, so that warm air is encouraged out, cool air welcomed in. Even if a room only has one window, this is still very possible.
If you were to remove the door and windowpane from any room in your house you would have a through-passage whereby an air current is created. An open-door policy, therefore, is a great way of intensifying airflow, forcing stale air out and fresh air in.
2. Attic or House Fans
There are many kinds of fans; whole house fans and attic fans are just two types. Attached from an opening in either the ceiling leading to the attic, or even from the attic structure itself (via a weather-proof vent), the principle remains the same, ie. to lift the warmest air in your house out into space above, or even out into the sky, so that your house’s overall temperature stays lower. It can save you quite a bit in terms of energy costs, over time.
3. Window Fans
The beauty of window fans is that they can be used to expel hot air from inside to outside during the day, and can also draw cool air from outside to inside during the night. An electronically reversible fan enables you to have one fan blade drawing in air from outside, with another simultaneously withdrawing the old, stale house air. Some of the more advanced models even come with thermostats, temperature displays, and remote controls!
4. Ceiling Fans
Technically speaking this is not cross-ventilation so much as the circulation of existing air. Nevertheless, ceiling fans can improve the overall airflow within your house, making it feel cooler (due to the increased rate of evaporation occurring on your skin). With the window and the door both open, this net increase in airflow can be increased further.
5. Natural ventilation
Counterintuitively, you might be better off closing all windows and doors during the day, especially if you live in a hotter climate. At night, you can leave everything open in order to cool your house the natural way. There is something known as the ‘chimney effect’, which uses the law of convection to great effect. Cool air starts off low down in the house; in the first floor or even basement if you have one. Then it gradually rises throughout the house until it escapes, perhaps through a single window in a room. Particularly in drier climates, you can make strategic use of this; in more humid climes you’re better off using a ceiling fan.
6. Box Fans
Box fans specialize in either pushing out the warmth from a room or pulling in the cool air to a room, depending on their placement. You can have the blades facing a single window, or simply turn it the other way around, as you wish. They can save you money when compared with air conditioning units, although they’re not quite as effective compared with window fans, so shouldn’t be put in a single window, or used instead of a window fan.
Box fans can be quite useful in terms of filtering air, perhaps in a garage, workshop, or somewhere where you’re working with wood. You’ll need to affix a furnace filter to the box fan, making sure you support it using overhead brackets fixed to the joists of the floor. The idea is that dusty or dirty air will be dragged through the box fan into the filter, thus ensuring a less hazardous breathing environment.
If you’re really suffering from heat overload, consider creating a ‘swamp cooler’ by yourself. Usually, a swamp cooler must be purchased and installed in your roof; it also goes by the name ‘evaporative cooler’ but is essentially the same thing. The principle is to circulate a very fine mist throughout a hot and arid room.
To create your own, simply place a bowl of ice directly in front of a box fan, allowing the breeze to soothe your skin and lower your overall body temperature. Actually, ice packs, frozen peas, chilled drinks, or anything else which is very cold will create the same effect. The icy substance absorbs the surrounding heat as the fan produces airflow over it, thus lowering the net temperature in your room.
Overall, there are plenty of ways of tweaking your room’s current ventilation, directing natural air currents to your benefit, and ensuring that your body’s evaporation process creates a cooler you, literally, or a bit of strategically placed ice sacrifices its coldness for your sake. It’s important to keep your body temperature at the right temperature or you won’t sleep well, and the next day will not go well. It’s a domino effect that can so easily be avoided.