For others experiencing an absurd heatwave today in a place which usually has temperate weather, remember – you may consider opening a window to cool down but this is not always a good idea. When temperatures reach the mid to high 30s, the air may be hotter outside than inside!

Also, if you’re in a country like France where it’s normal for windows to have shutters, consider leaving them closed for any windows which get direct sunlight during the daytime. It’ll help stop your home getting too hot.

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@InvaderXan it was always explained to me to not open windows on the south facing side of the house and only open north facing windows. I dunno how true that is tho

@bootblackCub @InvaderXan Depending what latitude you're at, the sun can spend most of its hours in the south during the hottest hours of the day.

@erinbee @bootblackCub I’m not sure the air temperature will be significantly different anyway TBH

@InvaderXan @bootblackCub True, but it still helps to keep your curtains closed in the south windows.

When it's a bit cooler, yeah, but like, if the air outside is straight-up just hotter than the air inside (even on the cool side of the house!) then all that's happening is you're letting heat in.

(Haven't tried but have heard, at least in dryer heat, hanging a wet towel over an open window can help cool things? Must be kept damp though)

@bootblackCub @InvaderXan
Oh and keeping curtains shut on the sun side of the house can reduce it heating the inside up

@certifiedperson @bootblackCub That would also make things more humid though, which can make hot weather less comfortable

@InvaderXan The windows in my room which get the most sun are the ones that give my chilli plants light, so I must suffer

@InvaderXan That's good to know actually, if it gets too much for me I'll bear that in mind. Thanks!

@RedFuture Oh, no worries. Most higher plants can survive a little while even in complete darkness.

I used to keep an aquarium garden, and it's a common problem to get a bloom of cyanobacteria. If you're not careful, that can form a mat and starve your other plants. The best remedy – blackout your tank for 3 days. Cover it and keep it pitch dark. Works like a charm, and the other aquarium plants manage just fine.

@InvaderXan Do like all French southerners tbh

All windows covered from 10am to 7-8pm, stay inside from 11am to 6pm and, if you can, take a nap at noon UwU

@InvaderXan Tbh the best part about it and what is a great signifier of summer for me growing up is that 2pm-4-5pm liminal space where everything kind of sits still; there is low luminosity, no noise, most people are inside, and it's just calm and relaxing time for people. It's very nice when you consider we are supposed to be active all the time today

@InvaderXan I think its probably past time that I fit shutters and/or an awning. UK houses really aren't designed for hot weather.

@lilly Thing is, with all that insulation, UK houses are pretty well suited to air conditioning. Once it's cold inside, it'll stay that way for a long time!

@InvaderXan Yeah, I think eventually I'll end up getting air con.

Being able to keep the sun from heating up the inside of the house with shutters ought to help in the meantime, and will help reduce the amount of AC required when I do get it.

At the moment I draw my blinds and curtains to keep the solar heat out, but it would be better to block it outside the double glazing.

@lilly Yeah, the outside shutters work so much better for that! Though it was a bit weird getting used to it at first. Around me, all the houses have electric rolling shutters, a bit like the ones which shop windows have.

Now though, it's one of those things that I'm going to miss if I move, the same way I miss those mosquito screens the windows had in Japan.

@InvaderXan oh, yes. Get the place as cool as possible in the evening and early morning, then close everything up as well as you can.

This gets significantly more frustrating though when midnight temperatures don't drop much below indoor temperatures anymore and you don't want to leave all windows open during the night.

I open the windows at night, then close them and the curtains, as soon as the sun reaches the house.

@InvaderXan Advice from someone who loves where it regularly gets above 40C: open everything up in the early morning, usually before 9 or 10am. If you have a fan, let it blow outward to pull any stagnant air out. Then, before the heat kicks in, close everything up. Blackout your windows and doors with curtains, cardboard, and or foil etc. Blocking the light is your best friend. Unplug electronics that you're not using/don't need 1/2

@InvaderXan 2/2 To keep yourself cool w/o: fans are a necessity. Keep a fan blowing to keep the air from getting stagnant. A frozen towel or bowl of ice placed in front of the towel can help cool the room down, just be ready to clean up the melted water lol. The absolute best way is a diy evaporative or swamp cooler. Try to stay indoors until the sun has set

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