Feeling the Heat

Heatwave

So today, the temperature is potentially going to break the all time record for July. The BBC are predicting a temperature of 35°C, with the possibility of it going higher locally. The weather forecasters are describing this as exceptional – the average temperature for this week in July is usually 21°C to 23°C – although it is worth bearing in mind that this is the third time this year that the temperature has exceeded 30°C, and the second time that the Met Office has issued a heat wave warning.

Of course, bearing in mind our usual temperature range, the UK is not overly well set up for this level of heat, hence why the heat wave warning always includes contact details for the NHS health advice line. We have air conditioning in the office, however typically we don’t have the instructions for the hieroglyphics on the control panel – good thing we’ve got the Internet though…

At home, like most UK houses we don’t have any air conditioning, so instead we’re getting quite well practiced in where to put fans, which windows and curtains to open and close at which times and so on. Upstairs is usually rather too warm most of the time; however we can usually keep the living room cool enough that we keep the patio door closed as inside is cooler than outside. The other useful trick is to remember that modern houses especially have loads of insulation. In terms of the roof, this tends to be above the ceiling, of the top floor, rather than directly beneath the roof. This means that as the house warms up, all the heat gets trapped by the insulation in the loft, however opening the loft hatch releases that heat past the insulation, so is a great way to dissipate heat. However the loft itself also gets very hot when the sun is beating down on the roof, so equally we tend to keep the hatch closed during the day, so as not to try to add too much to the heat.

If your interest in the weather extends further, I’ve recently added a new plug-in to the today screen of my PDA – SPB Weather. Although out of the box it retrieves its weather data from a site in Russia, the forums on their website include a template and instructions to enable the use of the local BBC weather forecasts from their website as the source of the data. Looking at the predictions for the next few days, the temperature is going to settle back down a bit, with some cloud and rain predicted. However it still not to the seasonal average, and looks like it may still be nudging 30°C.

2 thoughts on “Feeling the Heat”

  1. The temperature in my home office (un-airconditioned) has just hit 33.1C. That’s hot enough that most of my devices have set off their temperature warnings and shut themselves down! I think I need to invest in one of those mobile air-con units…

  2. Seems this is a global problem this month. Over here we are also having record temperatures – 13 consecutive days of 100 degree plus, with a peak in Dallas at 109. The ‘heat index’ which is some kind of measure of how hot it actually feels and is influenced I think by humidity, was pushing 115, and that dear friends is freakin’ warm.

    How on earth you guys are existing in temps exceeding 90 degrees without a/c is a mystery. We have the house set at 76 and all is well. As Trancel mentions upstairs is more of an issue and the a/c unit that cools the 1st floor (second floor if you are a yank) works much harder.

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