Keeping a Tiny House Cool During the Summer

Keeping a house cool during the summer can be a real challenge depending on where you live. Luckily, tiny houses are smaller compact spaces. This means they take less time to cool down and less effort to do so. Being tiny spaces, this also means they heat up faster—especially if you have several windows that allow the sun to enter. 

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Thought it may be challenging at first, keeping your tiny house cool doesn’t have to be expensive or extensive. We’ve put together a few tips that will help you cool a tiny house in no time.

There are several different options for cooling a tiny house, but the costs would vary. Here are a few options for installing AC units in your tiny home.

Central Air

A central air system is ideal for tiny houses. You won’t need any internal unit clogging up your spaces. You can use floor vents to distribute cool air. Unfortunately, to cool a tiny house, it’s best to install central air during the construction. Otherwise, you’re looking at an expensive project. 

Standalone A/C Units

Standalone air conditioning is an excellent way to cool smaller spaces. You can move a standalone quickly and store it when not used. 

But you should consider that tiny houses can lack conventional doors and windows. That can be a problem if you buy a standalone with tubing that needs an exit.

Window A/C Systems

Homeowners on a budget find window air conditioners to be a good deal. The problem, however, is that tiny house windows are smaller. That makes installing a traditional A/C a challenge. You also need to make sure the unit has adequate ventilation.

PTAC Units

Package Terminal Air Conditioners or PTACs, are the low, sleek air conditioners often seen in hotels. These units are typically installed into the wall and can be an ideal solution to cool your tiny home without sacrificing light from windows or installing ductwork.

When it comes to fitting cooling systems, you need a unit that fits your lifestyle. Measure windows and see the unit before you buy it. You will need space measurements to make sure you get a unit that won’t fail you. 

We’ve looked at ways to keep costs down without sweating into the furniture and  before getting a cooling system. We found some cool (pun intended) ways to cool the house without always going straight to an A/C.

Open Your Windows

If there’s any kind of breeze outdoors, open the windows! It’s a lot easier to use natural breeze to cool off a tiny house than a bigger one. But don’t ever use the A/C and open windows at the same time, or you run the risk of overworking your air conditioner. 

Use a Fan

A fan is a great way to distribute cool air. Once you’ve got the climate to your liking with your cooling system, shut it down and turn on the fan. Because heat rises, fans keep your tiny house cool by pushing hotter air towards the ground and the cooler air upwards. 

Fans are also great additions to a tiny home, as they can be stored when not in use. This saves space and money. 

Aside from standing fans, you can also install ceiling fans. Ceiling fans offer varying speeds, so you can find the perfect level of breeze that they produce to cool your room.

Use the A/C With Care

As comforting as it is to enter a home that is already cool and comfortable, running the A/C when you aren’t home can quickly cause your bills to increase. 

This can also cause your system to quickly freeze over or overwork itself, and eventually become not as effective as it would be. Be sure you are running your A/C unit at the appropriate temperature and never overwork it. 

Manage the Air

A few subtle changes to your tiny house can make all the difference in the world. You can save a little cash on the side by buying light and air-blocking shades. They’ll keep the sun out and act as a barrier between your home and heat.

Install Insulation

If your tiny home is adequately insulated, this can help reduce the amount of heat that enters and exits the home. 

Many people think that only insulation keeps a home warm, but this isn’t the truth. Insulation works by slowing conductive heat flow. This means that in the summer, your home stays cooler but in the winter, your home is warmer. 

In addition to insulating your home, you can also install insulated windows. These are specific windows made with multiple layers of glass but without the spaces in-between that generally act as a “vacuum.” Many of these windows include gasses such as argon or krypton, which have lower thermal conductivity than air. This helps keep your tiny home cooler than a normal window would.

Our Decision

If you’re tired of your tiny house turning into a microwave during the summers, try these effective tips. By using any of the above methods, you can find something that will suit your comfort level on days that are too hot to handle.

Our verdict: Going with a standalone air conditioner could be the quickest and most comfortable solution for your tiny home. 

A unit that pumps out up to 10,000 British Thermal Units (BTUs) is more than enough to keep your tiny house cool. Buying a unit that doesn’t require any tubing is a fast and easy way to avoid all of the unnecessary mishaps that could take place when trying to install a central unit. 

These units are lightweight and portable, and you can move them around if needed. Plus, they come with a remote so you can manage the rate of cooling without moving around. If you choose to go with a PTAC unit, consider getting a refurbished unit, and be sure to check out this complete guide to heating and cooling your tiny home. Good luck!

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