Author Topic: Why is my home so hot?  (Read 5888 times)

ENL

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 77
Why is my home so hot?
« on: May 05, 2015, 07:08:40 PM »
Despite the fact that it is only spring it has been sweltering hot inside our condo.  I'm a bit baffled by it because we generally keep the blinds closed during the day, are running LED/CFL light bulbs instead of incandescent, and do not have the heat on.  Also, it has not been all that hot here in Michigan.  We have been averaging about 50 degrees F the past week and even though we have had some highs in the 70s our condo's temp continues to climb past the outdoor temp to 80.  At that point I have been turning on the AC because I'm pregnant and my toddler and I can't handle the heat very well, especially at night.

Any ideas why my home is sauna-like?  I really am afraid of what are utility bills are going to be this spring and summer if we can't figure out what is going on and correct it.

jujube

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 7
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2015, 07:53:53 PM »
Recently sold a condo because of being so hot in summer and winter....located in So. Ca. and usually have great weather but for some reason, that house was too hot all the time. It was a middle unit, so maybe that contributed to the problem.

Spondulix

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 640
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2015, 08:03:26 PM »
What's the material of your condo exterior? How much direct sun is the outside getting? Any neighbors have the same issue?

BlueHouse

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3398
  • Location: WDC
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2015, 08:07:19 PM »
My condo in northern Va was ridiculously hot too. Turns out my hot water pipes circulated hot water through the pipes in the walls as a method to warm the place, but even after I learned that and shut down the circulation system in the Summer months, it was still very hot. I also had an electric space heater installed in an exterior utility closet so pipes wouldn't freeze in the winter. Had no idea that was there until I called someone thinking the water heater was too hot.

Even in NoVa, where it gets below freezing in winter, I never ever turned the heat on during the five years I lived there. I usually kept my balcony door open at night in the winter to cool it enough to sleep.  On a few occasions when all neighbors left for a holiday weekend, if I got cold, I'd just use the oven or dryer and the place would heat up immediately.

I had a condo in Atlanta with much more exterior area and it was 50 years old and still kept cooler in the summer than the brand new condo in NoVa.

kpd905

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1825
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2015, 08:19:25 PM »
Are your windows all open?  If so, I'm not sure how your condo could be 80 when it is 50 outside.

Bracken_Joy

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8926
  • Location: Oregon
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2015, 08:44:53 PM »
Are you above someone? We live above a group of young women and they COOK our apartment.

ENL

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 77
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2015, 09:12:11 PM »
Are your windows all open?  If so, I'm not sure how your condo could be 80 when it is 50 outside.

Not really.  We live in an area where crime is enough of an issue that I wouldn't feel great about leaving the windows open while we were gone or sleeping.  Most of the cold air is at night, obviously, and keeping them open for a few hours in the evening isn't making enough of a dent.  I might just have to start leaving the windows on the second floor open at night, though I still worry about traffic noises waking our son.  (We live near some sort of ambulance dispatch so lots of sirens)

ENL

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 77
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2015, 09:13:21 PM »
Are you above someone? We live above a group of young women and they COOK our apartment.

No, the units sit both side by side and back to back with each unit having a first and second floor.  We are in a middle unit, though.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2015, 09:36:17 PM by Evil Number Lady »

ENL

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 77
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2015, 09:17:37 PM »
What's the material of your condo exterior? How much direct sun is the outside getting? Any neighbors have the same issue?

Not sure on most of this as we just moved in.  The windows all face south and seem to get the most direct sunlight in the morning.  Temps continue to be high in the evening and night, however.

Exflyboy

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6811
  • Age: 58
  • Location: Corvallis, Oregon
  • Expat Brit living in the New World..:)
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2015, 11:33:48 PM »
Most solar gain (fancy technical term for "heat from the Sun") comes from windows.. Windows are almost like magnifying glasses for heat. Assuming your walls are reasonably well insulated, you might try closing the curtains.. that's what we do, makes a big difference providing the curtains effectively cover the windows.

How is the left insulation.. you take a peek up there, if there is no (or very thin.. like 6" or less) insulation that will definitely contribute to the problem.

Its usually not so much the temperature outside.. its the fact the sun is shining on the house.. acts a bit like a microwave to the inside.

TheLazyMan

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 55
  • Location: New Mexico
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2015, 12:04:25 AM »
If you determine the sun shining in is causing the problem you could put up solar shades on the outside of the windows getting the most sun.

kewper

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 20
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2015, 08:54:43 AM »
Are your windows all open?  If so, I'm not sure how your condo could be 80 when it is 50 outside.

Not really.  We live in an area where crime is enough of an issue that I wouldn't feel great about leaving the windows open while we were gone or sleeping.  Most of the cold air is at night, obviously, and keeping them open for a few hours in the evening isn't making enough of a dent.  I might just have to start leaving the windows on the second floor open at night, though I still worry about traffic noises waking our son.  (We live near some sort of ambulance dispatch so lots of sirens)

Just a note about your son--he will get used to the "ambient" noise pretty quickly, I always prefer keeping my toddler's room as loud as possible to "train" her not to wake up to these things.

Bracken_Joy

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8926
  • Location: Oregon
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2015, 09:28:05 AM »
Are your windows all open?  If so, I'm not sure how your condo could be 80 when it is 50 outside.

Not really.  We live in an area where crime is enough of an issue that I wouldn't feel great about leaving the windows open while we were gone or sleeping.  Most of the cold air is at night, obviously, and keeping them open for a few hours in the evening isn't making enough of a dent.  I might just have to start leaving the windows on the second floor open at night, though I still worry about traffic noises waking our son.  (We live near some sort of ambulance dispatch so lots of sirens)

I live 5th floor apartment downtown, lots of noise. One block from another high rise being built. We have 2 air purifiers that we run at night. Moves air, cleans it, makes white noise- all good for urban environments. Also, you adapt pretty quickly. Studies have shown light is harder to adapt to than sound, FWIW. Light will still impact your sleep long term.
(Bonus: both air purifiers we found in the trash room of our building. One had a scratch, one the air filter needed cleaned. People amaze me).

Bob W

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2946
  • Age: 61
  • Location: Missouri
  • Live on minimum wage, earn on maximum
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2015, 09:29:02 AM »
You should consider a home energy analysis by a pro with an infrared camera and door blower.    They run between $250 and $400.   Many utilities will substantially subsidize part of these. 

The evaluation will go over every possible energy and heat issue.   

If they save you $5 per month and solve your "hot condo" issue it will be well worth it.

Check with your utility.  Many of them even have people that will come out for free to do a quick looksee. 

My guess --- Your hot water heater is turned up full blast and radiating into the condo.  Same with your neighbors. 

tmoney

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 13
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2015, 07:42:42 PM »
Grow house next door since you are attached. That could warm yours up if it wasn't that warm maybe last year. Do you hear fan like noise all the time? Did it seem like someone was recently "remodeling" or lots of construction equipment going in. It's the first thing I thought, sorry

Spondulix

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 640
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #15 on: May 07, 2015, 11:20:02 PM »
You should consider a home energy analysis by a pro with an infrared camera and door blower.    They run between $250 and $400.   Many utilities will substantially subsidize part of these. 

The evaluation will go over every possible energy and heat issue.   
Or get a quote for new windows. Shouldn't cost anything, and they'll give a good idea how much heat is coming from windows/light.

slugline

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1179
  • Location: Houston, TX USA
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2015, 07:37:51 AM »
Do the south facing walls feel noticeably warmer than the others? With that much temperature gain, I'd think you'd be able to feel it if it's sun-caused.

BlueHouse

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3398
  • Location: WDC
Re: Why is my home so hot?
« Reply #17 on: May 08, 2015, 08:17:29 PM »
I have this thermal leak detector and I love it

http://www.amazon.com/Black-Decker-TLD100-Thermal-Detector/dp/B0044R87BE

I've been able to find cold spots in the winter and warm spots in the summer. For $35, it's amazingly accurate. Saved me a lot of hassle when I went through home warranty periods by showing evidence of temp differentials. Maybe one of your neighbors has one you can borrow?