Keep Cool

"Britain is set to swelter for another two weeks, forecasters say, as water companies urge customers to use less water. The BBC's weather team says temperatures will stay high across most of the UK over the next fortnight" - is a newsline from BBC news in July.


How do you keep cool in these hot times?

In an e-mail this July, Connie and Drew from Surrey, the owners of "Silver Birch" which was built in 2013, comment: "For the first time in five years since living here we’ve been in the house when it reached over 30 degrees outside. Whilst we knew that active cooling was an option we didn’t know it would automatically kick in when the temperature goes above 30. It was a pleasant surprise to find the house a cool 21 degrees and, instead of the heating sign on the pump, there was a cute snowflake sign! How wonderful that the house keeps surprising us after all this time!"


How is this possible:

If you live in a not so well insulated house, keep your shutters and windows shut during the hottest time of the day.

Open windows to create a cross draught in the evening to cool the house before going to sleep.

In the long run, insulate your house - this will keep it warm in winter and cool in summer and save a lot of energy.


Air conditioning systems and fans use a lot of energy and often cause a chill - they are not a very good solution.


When building a new house, make sure it is well insulated and provides the best systems to keep cool in the extreme heat.

Sun protection blinds which automatically close with sunlight or open when it is too windy

A well insulated house stays cool for much longer than a traditional house.


The insulation not only keeps the house warm in winter but keeps the heat out in summer as well.


However, even the best insulated house will warm up from the solar gain, the short wave radiation from the sun, which heats a building directly through an opening such as a window or patio door, or indirectly from the short-wave infrared radiation which is able to pass through glazing and heat the internal fabric of the building.


Clever sun protection blinds which react to the amount of sunlight and shut automatically when it becomes too windy, as well as high quality heat pumps which cool the house, give great comfort.


Stommel Haus install high tech heat pumps with under floor heating on all storeys of the building. The heat pump can be completemented by active or passive cooling. From the control panel of the heating you can instruct the system to provide exactly the temperatures you need: For instance after 3 days of more than 25°C outside the systems starts cooling the house. Cooler - not cold - water will be circulated in the under-floor heating pipes which guranatee a comfortable temperature throughout the house without causing any draught as are often generated with air condition systems or ventilators. There is no chilly feeling - just the perfect temperature.

Passive or active cooling


There are two different ways to cool a building with a heat pump.


Passive cooling: This is where the brine medium or the groundwater absorbs the energy from the heating circuit via a heat exchanger and transfers it outside. This function is also called natural cooling, as it transfers the excess heat to the natural ambience. Apart from the control unit and circulation pump, the heat pump remains switched off.


Active cooling: For this, the function of the heat pump is simply reversed. This method of cooling can be achieved with reverse operation. This means that the refrigerant circuit is reversed internally or reversal is achieved by an external changeover of the primary and secondary circuits. As with a fridge, the heat pump then actively generates a cooling capacity. This is called active cooling.