When it comes to the sun shining down and into our Minneapolis area homes, it can be the nicest thing in the winter. But come summer time, we’re trying to block out the hot rays that follow. Dealing with the sun’s heat can become costly during these hotter months. However, if you’re able to shade your home better with the right landscaping, you no longer have to worry about these increasing costs.
Natural cooling via the right landscaping includes a principle known as evapo-transpiration (release of water vapor from plants). With evapo-transpiration, you’re able to reduce temperatures up to 9°F in those areas that are surrounded by the trees. This creates a cooler micro-climate to live in and can actually cut the costs that you spend on air conditioning during the summer months by 15-50%. By having just one perfectly placed tree in the yard, you’re adding the same effect that you would need to add five air conditioners throughout the home to provide. Just place the trees close to the windows and they will take care of the rest when it becomes too hot out.
You should shade the east and west facing windows throughout the home using trees, and this is able to reduce the costs throughout the home. Taller shrubs work well, too. The one thing you should think about however, are the types of trees that you plant since you do not want to block out the welcome warm rays of sun in the winter time. This can be done by planting deciduous trees throughout the yard. Their leaves will provide shade in summer, but those leaves will be gone by the time the weather turns cold.
The Department of Energy recorded that the average return on investment for landscaping as a means of low-energy cooling is less than 8 years when all you have to do is plant a tree or three. If you plant these trees when they are just saplings, they will be large enough within a year to block the sun and remain there for many years to come.
If the high summer cooling bills have got you steamed, talk to us today about making landscaping changes before the hot weather hits. We are able to develop a plan and use some of the most beautiful trees that will not only help with cooling costs but look just as beautiful.