Sweltering Heat

bzyathomeJuly 18, 2006

I just wanted to comment on the heat here in NW New Mexico. We are experiencing 98-100 degree temps just as many of you are. This is when I really love my small home, when I'm trying to cool it off.

My sister and bil have a 3000 sqft home (for just the 2 of them by the way) that is never ever cool and when she comes to my little house she says I freeze her out. Of course we are able to use evaporative coolers here as we don't have the humidity alot of you have.

Heating and cooling these large homes is just ridiculous and now I'm happy to be able to say so in this forum....LOL.

Marilyn in NM

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Marilyn...what are evaporative coolers?

Thank you!


    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 9:52AM
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We're running out of "affordable" fossil fuels. In a way, those of us with smaller homes are already part of a trend that will gain momentum in the near future. My new house has 1,715 sq ft of cooled floor area. It's well insulated (BIBs) and with a 7-12 roof with Tech Shield. I also used Tech Shield on the 2 sunny-side 10 ft high walls. My 3 ton 16XRI Trane air conditioner cools it just fine, even in this 100 degree San Antonio weather. My electric bill was $72 for the first hot month.
BTW I built it close to all the places that we go to (almost on daily basis), therefore my gasoline bill is very low as well.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 11:46AM
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Anicee, evaporative coolers are actually what we used to call a water cooler or swamp cooler. They have pads inside that a pump runs water over and then the fan blows the cold air into the house. They work on evaporation. And all I know is they don't work in humid parts of the country. I grew up in SW Kansas and they definitely didn't work there because of the humidity. We're in NW New Mexico and it's much dryer here so they work pretty good until we get rain and then they don't work as well.

I've included a link that explains evaporative coolers.

Marilyn in NM

Here is a link that might be useful: Evaporative/Swamp Coolers

    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 12:32PM
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It is hot here, too! I am thankful for my smaller and fairly energy-efficient space, and that so far my A/C is keeping up with it. They installed some high-efficiency thing for us a few years ago, and it actually "rests" a lot, except in the late afternoon. My old one seemed to run constantly. I am like some of you in that I will be glad when alternative/environmentally-smart fuel sources are readily available.

I am more worried about my water bill. My son and his friend have been resodding my yard, so it has to be babied until it roots well...come on, autumn!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 12:55PM
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Marilyn...thank you for the info, first time I hear of those. It would not work here because it's extremely humid by the ocean.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 8:45PM
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It's been really hot and humid here too. Have a heat pump. My dad out in NV has a swamp cooler.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 10:29PM
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I'm lucky!

We have natural cooling from the bay, on all sides since we live on an island! The water temps range from 34F to 54F.

It is chilly tonight needed a jacket on the way home from class.

I feel for all you folks sweating it out with the heat.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2006 at 11:23PM
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It was very hot again yesterday! Still in the upper 90's. I took a picture of our husky enjoying the porch. She hates being in the house and insists on being outside so we turn the misters on the porch on for her. She loves just lying under them and the fine mist hits her coat. She's really old and stays right up on the porch all the time especially when it's hot. The cement always stays cool even when it's in the 90's.
Here's my old Keesha girl.
Marilyn in NM

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 8:17AM
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Hot as Hades here in the Hudson Valley. The humidity has been through the roof! Thank goodness for central air...the older I get, the crankier I become when subjected to high heat and humidity. Today has cooled down and the temps are supposed to be in the 80's. Aaaah, a cool spell. One good thing about the heat is that our crop of raspberries has been fantastic. Between this past Friday and yesterday DH and I picked 12 quarts! And we figure we've only picked about 1/3 of what the total crop will be...yum ;o)

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 8:24AM
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I love my small house for the same reason!! I live in Tucson, AZ. It has been running an average of 110+ degrees. I work nights, and even well after 10pm it has stayed over 100! Lately it has been monsoon season and the humidity has been 20 percent.

It's just miserable! The hubby and I are making some slow moving plans to move to Fresno. I can't wait, but I'm sure I'll have at least a few more summers here!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 8:25AM
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Marilyn, your dog is so pretty and sweet. And, your porch is just lovely---I can see why she enjoys it~

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 8:49AM
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Thanks, southernheart.
We really enjoy our porch. It's like an extension of my LR. I just wish I had double French doors going out to it instead of a regular front door and storm door.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 9:39AM
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I've lived in the Atlanta Metro Area all my life. It's HOT & HUMID! Been this way since June. We usually don't get this hot until mid to late July on. If I wanted to live in the tropics, I would have moved to South America. I really dislike the humidity. I've been keeping my thermostat at 78-80 & ceiling fans running. So far so good with the bill. I have a cement patio out back, but nothing to shade the sun. That's my next big project before next summer. My house is in a new s/d so I don't have any big trees - yet. I'm fertilizing the ones I have in hopes that they grow fast. I need shade!

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 9:43AM
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We usually have at least 6 months of heat and humidity down here in s.e. FL where the tropics begin. DH and I have lived here since we were children, and the humidity didn't bother us as much as it does now nearing 60. The humidity drains us of all energy and if you don't get out and do what you want to do early, forget it. I just don't see how the roofers, lawn crews, etc. can work out in this stuff day after day, all day long. Since our cottage is so tiny, around 700 sq.ft. we only have a room a.c. that cools the whole place. We do have ceiling fans also.


    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 11:43AM
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Thankfully the heat broke here today - it's only 76 today, 20 degrees cooler than yesterday and a lot drier. I'm loving it. I need to go buy a new bedroom AC though, mine finally died about 2AM. I'm considering breaking down and getting a minisplit system for next summer, I need to find a local dealer/installer and that's going to be a wad of cash I just can't spend right now. (We have forced hot water heat so a conventional AC is out. Major construction running into five figures to put the ducts in.)

    Bookmark   July 19, 2006 at 1:43PM
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I live in Dallas--it was 124 degrees in my car a couple of days ago. I find if I keep the doors to my rooms (bedroom etc) closed it keeps the house cooler. Also a must is closing the blind shutters.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 11:32AM
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We've put up awnings over west and east windows and that definitely has helped in keeping the sun from blasting in.


    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 2:24PM
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Fortunately, we don't have to use our upstairs space for day-to-day living, which can get unbearably hot. Can't leave the east and west casement windows open as we've had so much rain, but we do have a couple of windows on the north side that crank out from the bottom so even if it does rain straight down, it won't come in. We did put in a new wall AC in the kitchen, 12,000 BTUs, energy saver, and it really works well, cooling in the hi 70s and pulling out the humidity. So far, a tower fan in the bedroom has been fine. We also have baseboard heat, so central air is out of the question. Screened in porch off of the dining room faces east, so I put up curtain rods and hung sheets with the clip-on rings. They "puddle", sort of shabby chic. I close them before the sun comes up, then open them later on.

I close all of the downstairs windows late morning before it warms up, then open them again when it cools down, if the humidity is OK. We also have ceiling fans in the kitchen and dining room. Sounds like a lot for the small living space, doesn't it?

Well, its been better yesterday and today. There's alway August to look forward to!!!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 2:49PM
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Alicia, it was 108° in Euless a couple of days ago, so if your car was only 124° you must have only just turned it off! In summer cars usually well exceed 150°!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 7:36PM
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Not only was it the hottest day of the year here, (102), we got hit by a REALLY bad storm last night that knocked out power to much of the area. I am currently at my dad's house, and I don't expect to get my power back for 3 - 5 days :( One of my sisters is here too, and altogether there are 4 dogs...hehe...dad's kennel.

Luckily I didn't have much in the fridge, and had SO much in the freezer that it will survive 48 hours since it's packed so tight. Not waiting that long though...tomorrow morning I'm taking it to where my sister works -- she is the Chef and has a big walk in freezer :)

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 8:52PM
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We were 114 in Oklahoma today and hotter tomorrow. We are really hot and humid!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2006 at 10:53PM
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Admittedly, Roopooroo, my car WAS underneath a tree just did't think anyone would believe me!!!!!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2006 at 10:35PM
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Hmm, gotcha', it was 118 day before yesterday in Phoenix.

There's an editorial in the paper today about the urban heat island we've created here, with all the concrete, asphalt, buildings, and that it doesn't cool off at night anymore. We've had lows in the 90s all during July. Nighttime temps. are 9 degrees higher than 50 years ago.

Our electric (A/C) bill was $385 this month, fortunately we're on a level-payment plan that averages our bill. It just went from $180 to $195/month. We can't get outta' here fast enough.

DH and I have our home for sale and are moving to a high mesa in northern New Mexico. We've been looking at smaller and smaller floorplans, trying to downsize into a manageable environment.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2006 at 5:58PM
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We are still having our heat wave out here in So.Ca. Luckily, I am at a higher elevation so we don't get the 100 deg. temps. But these 90s are a bit earlier this year. We usually get a week or two of them in August and then back down to the 80s. I'm one who really dislikes A/C and loves to be outside. I am so ready for fall!

dianne47, my brother lives in Gilbert and tells me every summer about the temps there. I think I'd be moving, too. No, I KNOW I would be. lol! And you are so right about those urban heat islands. Most of So.Ca. has turned into one, as well. I really miss the So.Ca. I grew up in but no use whining about it because it's not going to revert back without some major act from mom nature. ; ) So I'll just stay up here on the mountain, surrounded by decomposed granite and pinon pines. Smells a lot nicer after it rains, too.

Good luck on your home sale and I hope you get out of there soon!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2006 at 2:16PM
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You mentioned that you are planning to move to Fresno. I hope you aren't planning to move their to get away from the heat. Fresno is very hot, too!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2006 at 8:45PM
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Hey dianne47, I lived in Phoenix for 6 years, late 70's early 80's. I visit every few years and I'm always amazed at how much more developed (and hot and polluted) it is. When I lived there, Pinnacle Peak rd. was considered 'way North' :) And, do ya watch channel 3 there? Bruce, the chopper guy, is my brother :)

    Bookmark   July 25, 2006 at 11:12PM
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I can deal with the heat, it is the humidity which puts me away. Lived in NM and loved it there, so I like your plans for location. I can't remember mosquitos in CO, but we have them now with the rain and high temps. No complaint about rain, we always need it here.

We are all a part of creating this environment. In addition to the myriad of building in AZ, adding lawns with constant watering required has added humidity. I can never figure out why people move to places like AZ and NV, then put in lawns. Maybe I'm too natural...but one of the things I loved about NM was the natural desert landscape. Even the wild flowers were in abundance and far more brilliant in color. A lawn vs. wild flowers and sage?


    Bookmark   July 26, 2006 at 8:50AM
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Sandy, I so agree about lawns in desert cities! The only thing I can excuse is a *small* section in the back if you have kids, so they have a nice place to play.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2006 at 9:12AM
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Marilyn your baby girl and porch are gorgeous.

Another North Texan Here - it was so hot and humid yesterday it took my breath away like the super cold crisp winter nights of my youth used to back home in snowbelt lakeside upstate NY.

This is our first full summer here in NTexas and thank God we did 20 years time in Oklahoma to prepare us for this lol... last year we moved in in August and I've heard it said there were only like 5 days at 100 or overall last summer. This month We broke an 11 day streak of 100+ with 2 days in the 90's only to shoot right back to 103+ for 3 or 4 days now

TG for our small home our energy bill is full electric and only at $164.oo- thanks to an energy star home and keeping the thermostat at 79 at night and 80-82 during the day depending on the time .

A friend of dh's has the same house/flloorplan as our a few streets over and his electric bill is like 300+ eeks

    Bookmark   July 30, 2006 at 11:47AM
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93 - feels like 106. This according to weather.com for Saratoga Springs NY. There have been warnings in all of the media. It gets hot and humid here, but this excess is rare, thank goodness. I'll have to turn on the little AC soon.

If you do a google search for "God and lawns" you can read a discussion between God and St. Francis about lawn maintenance. Really cute and a lot of food for thought. Enjoy.


    Bookmark   August 1, 2006 at 1:40PM
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I have 3300 sf, 2 air conditioners and set ther thermostat to 71 or 72 and lately it hasn't gone below 78 or 79 upstairs until wee hours of the morning. It runs constantly. I had the ac company come out to look at the system and they said nothing was wrong it was just the heat was so bad.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2006 at 1:43PM
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Checking in from the So.Ca. mountains - barely 70. After a week of record high temps for our elevation and the southland in general, we have plummeted to night time temps in the low 50s and 60-70s in the day. The wind has been blowing for 5 straight days and it's not a warm wind as usual. I had a sweater and socks on this morning before I worked out. It feels like fall and it's barely August. But my gardens aren't complaining so neither will I.

Weather guessers say we will warm up again by the end of the week. I hope so cuz I have this sudden urge to make some soup and an apple pie. : )

Hope you all cool off soon!


    Bookmark   August 1, 2006 at 8:21PM
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