That seemed to be a bit more than your usual hailstorm.
The sound on the video is quite distorted… obviously the poor phone couldn’t handle it.
I’ve got a new ceiling fan in the kitchen. The bloke at the lighting shop said that in a kitchen, a metal fan is good because it can be easily cleaned — whereas in a bedroom, quieter wooden fans are more often used.
He also reckoned for the size of the room, the larger 52 inch blades would work well. So here it is in all its glory.
I’m still getting used to it being there up. Sometimes I catch it out of the corner of my eye and think it looks like a gigantic spider up on the ceiling.
At full speed it certainly produces quite a breeze, and helps cool the room down a lot. Wish I’d got it done when I got the livingroom ceiling fan put in, but better late than never.
(I’m hoping the installation cost isn’t too bad… it’s been almost a fortnight since it was installed, but I still haven’t received the bill from the electrician.)
Which brings us to the weather. Here’s the forecast.
I’ve previously graphed how the temperature rises in the house, but that was before I had the good insulation put in the roof (might do an update this week). The insulation means the house doesn’t heat up very quickly… so a single hot day is usually quite manageable.
The run of long days we’re expecting this week (worst since Black Saturday in 2009) will be a challenge though, as the house won’t get a good chance to cool down overnight. Having tried the ceiling fans (now in three rooms) on previous hot days, they do help, as do portable fans.
But no doubt I’ll be pondering my stubborn refusal to get air-conditioning… though there are other less energy-hungry approaches, such as outside blinds over the windows, window treatments, and wall insulation.
Thank goodness that scientists aren’t warning of any kind of permanent warming of the climate that might prove, y’know, dangerous — otherwise a record-breaking run of hot days might be a tad alarming.
One shouldn’t jump to conclusions of course. As Jon Stewart quipped:
“Global warming is a total hoax. And I’ll tell you how I know. Because it’s cold, today, where I live. That’s jus’ science.”
…and the opposite applies.
I don’t know if this record run of hot days is some freak weather event caused by something else, or a demonstration of how climate change manifests itself. But at the very least this record being broken should be a warning of what’s likely to keep happening into the future as temperatures rise.
Well, I’m getting there.
Last week I had a ceiling fan installed in the livingroom. It’ll help on hot days, and because I have ceiling ducted heating, also helps distribute heat better on cold days as well.
To do this, the old light fitting was removed. I’m hoping it might be worth something — I was never that keen on it, but it does appear to be an original, making it about eighty years old. There appears to be a reasonable market for such things.
In contrast, I really like all the other (antique) lights in the house — except for the kitchen. Of course, now I’m realising that I should have arranged for the kitchen to have a ceiling fan installed as well. And while I was at it, I could have got them to install the heat guards for the down lights in there. They were switched from halogen to LEDs, so not as warm, but still worthwhile to assist with the insulation.
Speaking of insulation, that got done yesterday morning. The old loose stuff had been removed last year. The very hot day or two last week was unbearable. Winter last year wasn’t much fun either. My estimate is that in a weatherboard house with no roof insulation, the temperature would drop by at least a degree per hour if it was cold outside, which made a big difference to the gas heating bill.
So I finally got around to booking insulation back. This document from the Victorian Department of Sustainability reckons the recommended level of insulation for ceilings in Melbourne is R2.5, but I decided to go for R4. (Confusingly, I subsequently found this Federal government web page which recommends R4.1. Hmmm.
The material they used was something called “earthwool” — which unlike conventional glasswool doesn’t cause irritation if handled without gloves.
The installers appear to have done a good quick job, but it was a tad irritating that they’d booked in for 7:30am (necessitating everybody being awake and dressed early) but didn’t show until 10am. Not to worry; I think it’s already made a difference… after they’d finished, I turned the heat on (damn it was cold yesterday).
Gaps were left around the down lights, with spare earthwool to fill in the gaps once I’ve had the electricians back in to install the heat guards.
So, hopefully having insulation back in the roof will make a big difference, and it means the various housey things I’ve been meaning to get done are progressing.
Other projects in progress:
Memo to self: