Good point. Employment the main prob I suppose. We go there a lot for
hols (cycle touring). People with holiday homes often seem pinned down
whereas we can go to any part of France. Best thing is to know people
with 2nd homes and go and visit them, rather than having ones own.
Or you could shell a bit out and make your windows oopen inwards and fix
slatted shutters on the outside then you'll have your own bliss.
I wonder how many deaths of French people that saved during last year's
torrid conditions ...
Come to think - summer heat gain would be based on difference between
reasonable room temp say 65F and high summer air temp say 85F - 20deg
F difference. Not a lot compared to winter frost, say - 5F; heat loss
based on temp difference of 70 deg F. Hence DG contribution summer
saving less than a 3rd of winter saving on any particular day with
these temperatures. It would depend on the frequency of high/low temps
and the efficiency of cooling compared to heating. I'd guess cooling
less efficient than heating but I don't know.
Opening windows a cheaper and more pleasant option.
Just spotted this in the grauniad
Scientists' survival tip: go with the flow
Tim Radford, science editor
Thursday August 7, 2003
British scientists have just issued a hot tip for survival when the
fan has broken down and the thermometer is up. It saves energy and
exploits everyday household technology.
Just open a window, says Gary Hunt, who leads research at Imperial
College London into the fluid mechanics of natural ventilation. It
helps to have a sash window in the right place and at the right
"Many of us have forgotten how to correctly use the sash windows so
carefully installed by the Edwardians and Victorians to maximise
airflow," he said. "If used correctly it is possible to significantly
improve comfort in the office or at home without using air
conditioning units that place high demands on energy and increase
carbon dioxide emissions."
He used a small laboratory model to simulate the average home as a
hothouse and keep track of cool airflow through rooms and buildings.
It is best to have your sash window open equally top and bottom. That
way cooler air flows into the room through the lower opening and
flushes the warm air out through the top.
If the windows are too small, or badly placed, however, hot air is
trapped at ceiling level and extends down to make the inhabitants
unpleasantly hot and muggy.
"Our research shows a good strategy is to leave sash windows in the
mid-position overnight - providing it is safe to do so," he says.
"The cool external air flushes the warm air of of the room and also
cools the walls, floor and ceiling. The cool walls absorb the heat the
following day and prevent the internal from temperatures rising as
Another afterthought - if Simon doesn't think opening windows has any
benefit in hot weather does this mean that he has spent the last 3
very hot Augusts with windows closed?
If so he would have been extremely uncomfortable. This could account
for his enthusiasm for air conditioning, which most of us can do
without, having discovered the benefits of opening windows in hot
Conversely I wonder if he opens all his windows in winter and turns up
the central heating?
Yup. I've got aircon. The inside of the house never goes above 21.
No. I've got aircon. I've been exceedingly comfortable, thanks, as long as
I don't go outside.
You are an idiot.
It doesn't work in August. It only works earlier in the year and later. It
doesn't work in August on account of that big yellow thing in the sky and
the fact that daytime temps are over 31 and night time temps over 24.
Why do you think this is "conversely". Its just as stupid as opening them
in August. In winter it would be too cold and in August too hot.
Why is this concept too hard for you to understand?
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