Combatting the Effects of a Heatwave in Homes Without Air Conditioning

With temperatures in the UK having already soared above 30°c for the first time this year, meteorologists have predicted that the chance of the UK experiencing a hot summer is now 45% – 2.3 times the normal figure.

The current climate crisis means we can expect a significantly hotter spell each summer. However, as British infrastructure has been designed with a greater emphasis on keeping heat in given our typical cooler temperatures, it’s rare for homes in the UK to be equipped with the required means of keeping heat out when needed to relieve people from sweltering conditions.

To help you stay cool this summer, we’ve outlined solutions that you can invest in that will combat the effects of heatwaves and high temperatures year after year.

Three rooflights with cayman external blinds.

External Blinds

External blinds are the perfect solution to keep your home cool during a heatwave. Designed to cover glazing of all sizes and inclinations from sliding and folding patio doors to skylights, roof lights and conservatories, they effectively regulate light (glare) and UV, whilst minimising any unwanted solar heat gain by averting the sun’s rays from reaching the glass and keeping your home – and you – cool.

By creating a barrier in front of the glazing they’re mounted to, they can block up to 97% of the sun’s solar heat energy, reducing interior room temperatures by up to 18°C on even the hottest summer days.

Not only does this type of shading solution keep the indoor space naturally cool, mitigating the need for air conditioning but prevents fixtures and furnishings from bleaching by the sun whilst also acting as an insect screen when installed in front of sliding / inward opening doors and windows.


Not a new concept to the UK, awnings have been used on elaborate glass shop frontages since the 1800s, to passively cool the interior of buildings, whilst also protecting goods from the damaging effects of the sun, before the introduction of air conditioning and cheap energy in early 1900s.

Ideal for family BBQs and gatherings, awnings act as an extension of the roof of your property and deliver a much-needed cooling effect to the indoor room adjacent to where they are positioned, resulting in a more comfortable living space – both inside and out.

Just like external blinds, awnings will also mitigate furnishings and fixtures from UV degradation and diffuse bright light to eliminate glare. Furthermore they offer excellent privacy on the terrace to enjoy alfresco living with the family.

Bioclimatic pergolas

Introducing a modern aluminium pergola with adjustable slats (louvres) that can be rotated at the touch of a button, provides you with full control over the amount of sun (heat & light) that enters your outdoor space, while providing ventilation.

This pergola is ideal for creating an ‘outdoor room’ in your garden, but it can also be installed against a property to extend your living space and provide exceptional solar heat and light control indoors.

You can add side screens similar to external roller blinds, for extra privacy and protection from low-level sunlight, and even breezes and driving rain. Accessories such as LED lighting and infrared heating can be added to make the most of your terrace day and night, year-round.

Final thoughts

Coping with extreme heat in a home without resorting to air conditioning can seem impossible, however, investing in external shading – a long term solution – will not only prevent indoor temperatures from rising during high heat but mitigate the need for air conditioning which not only will save on high energy costs but also help the environment by stopping unnecessary CO2 emissions.

To find out more about our innovative range of external shading systems, that will not only prevent excessive solar heat gain to new homes being built that are susceptible to overheating, but existing properties too (of which the majority of building stock will remain for years to come), contact one of our knowledgeable shading experts on 0344 800 1947.

Alternatively, our Shading Guide, put together by industry-leading experts explains why buildings overheat and how external shading is so effective (the facts and figures) along with the importance of automation.


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