breezes & natural ventilation for home energy improvement

Breezes are common in many climates and regions. Inland, coastal and valley-mountain breezes may involve only some short periods of the day, but as long as they exist they can be a very effective cooling method.

Consider breezes and outside fresh air to cool your house.

In hot climates, in areas with significant breezes, homes should be sited and oriented to catch them; their design should provide ways of bringing breezes into the house, by deflecting them if necessary; and should also be designed to allow air movement and warm air exhausting...

Strategies with breezes
- Open your windows to breezes;
- Use breezes for cross and stack ventilation.
- Try different strategies using windows and openings in different parts of the house.
-Close the house up tight during the hotter parts of the day, to keep the fresh air from breezes inside... and the heat outside.

Try the best strategies to deflect breezes and to channel them into your rooms. That's a basic principle of natural cooling.

Channeling breezes with hedges and trees

Hedges and rows of trees, properly designed, can be used as windbreaks or… to channel breezes into the house.

Just be aware of garages and other outside structures: they may block or redirect breezes away from the house...

See: Landscape for a low-energy house

Types of Windows & Breezes

Windows (hopping windows, sliding windows, awning windows, casement windows, louvers...) have different features, and according to their type they will open inward, or outward, or be hinged at the top or the side, and so on... And that matters when our goal is to capture or redirect breezes into the house.

Wing wallsCasement windows are often the best choice for these purposes. They provide a wider opening than other types of windows, and can be used to direct breezes inside, when they blow parallel to the walls or in unfavorable directions: they open outward, and can be angled to suit our purposes.


Wing walls

Airports and organisms like the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA, USA) can provide you data about prevailing breezes in your area.

Wing walls are solid panels built alongside windows, used to redirect prevailing breezes into the living areas (see image above).

Controlling the Breeze Direction

ventilation with canopies: shaping the breezesYou may also consider directing the airflow provided by breezes, according to what it is most useful for you. Louvers can direct the airflow downward or upward (image 1 and 2).

A canopy over a window will direct most of the airflow upward (image 4), or downward-upward if it has a gap (image 5) or several gaps (image 3).




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