Queensland experiences uncomfortably warm summer and residents usually rely on air conditioning to cool down, but this can come with high energy cost. Fortunately, there are alternatives that are easier on the budget. Among these is having whirly birds installed on your roof. For a one-time cost of installation, you get years and years of natural ventilation and cooling. Find out more about this twirling bulb and how it may benefit you in keeping your place cool in summer.
In Queensland, one of the property development requirements for residential and commercial buildings is that they have passive temperature-regulating features. There are several ways to achieve this, such as the strategic orientation of rooms, insulation, eaves and awnings, and high ceilings. Installations such as ceiling fans, air conditioning, eave vents, and whirly birds are also recommended.
A whirly bird is a type of hybrid semi-mechanical cooling system that promotes passive cooling. It is shaped like a cylindrical dome with blades or fins. As hot air is lighter than cold air, it wafts up the ceiling and escapes through the turbine vent. This process makes the whirly bird spin as it dispels hot air out and collects cooler air in. Whirly birds rely on wind to spin; they can be active, mechanically driven, or passive, depending solely on the wind to move.
When properly installed, whirly birds work well and don’t leak or let in rainwater. They can be installed on tiled or tin roofs and secured close to the roof’s peak for maximum efficiency. There are also whirly birds made of transparent material that allow natural light in.
Whirly birds are cost-effective home and commercial installations that give a host of benefits. These low-maintenance fixings do not require more than wind power to work, thus helping you save on energy cost. Here are the many ways having whirly birds installed on your roof can benefit you:
The main purpose of whirly birds is to remove trapped heat from the ceiling and roof and let in cooler air. It can help eliminate heat that makes occupants feel uncomfortable. Whirly birds can also prevent heat from radiating into the home and cause electrical appliances to have to work harder than normal (that may even cause them to break down). They are a simple yet no-nonsense solution to keeping your home cool and comfy in hot summer months.
Whirly birds work by dragging warmer air out and taking cooler air in and pushing it into your house in the process. In this way, these swirling turbines encourage better air circulation so it doesn’t feel stuffy inside. They help encourage fresh air into different areas of your home, keeping the ambient air fresher and cool.
During the summer months, many residents turn to air conditioning to help them cool off. Whilst this may be necessary to maintain comfort and well-being, it can also crank up energy bills. Whirly birds can help decrease electricity consumption from air conditioning with the use of simple aerodynamics to keep the exchange of air going. Except for electrically-powered whirly birds, wind-driven ones help you save on your energy bills.
During the summer months, one of the common problems is mould and mildew build up because of the hot temperatures and humidity. Trapped moisture due to humidity and poor ventilation can also cause wood rots and may attract bugs and other insects. With whirly birds, trapped moisture is allowed to escape or dry out. They help remedy roof dampness which could result in mould and mildew problems.
Many appliances work longer and harder during the hot summer season. Air conditioning units and refrigerators are especially vulnerable to heat exposure. This can damage the condenser coils which can inhibit efficiency and may ruin the unit altogether. Whirly birds help maintain a more favourable temperature and reduce the workload on your electrical appliances.
Passive, or wind-driven, whirly birds do not consume power since they rely on wind to work. They also don’t emit toxic gases and don’t produce harmful chemical by-products or any pollutants. Whirly birds are, therefore, eco-friendly.
Whirly birds are tough and weather-proof and can still work in harsh weather conditions. These natural cooling units are generally made from galvanised aluminium and stainless steel; they don’t easily rust or corrode. Maintenance is also quite minimal, requiring only a greasing every few months, typically twice a year depending on the unit.
Making Whirly Birds Work More Efficiently
As passive whirly birds rely solely on airflow to work, they should be viewed as supplementary fixtures to your existing temperature-regulating or ventilation options, such as insulation. Unless they are driven mechanically or with electricity, whirly birds won’t work without sufficient airflow. They typically work with the breeze going at least 16 kilometres per hour.
Ceilings must have adequate vents for whirly birds to work and expel hot air. Vents in the eaves or ceiling enable warm and cool air exchange. Same goes with sarking — without it, whirly birds will only pull air through the gaps between roof tiles. But if you have sarking, the space beneath the roof is closed, and the air is drawn through the turbine’s vents. This results in better cross ventilation and subsequently, temperature regulation.
The effectiveness of whirly birds is also determined by the size of your house. Installing the correct number of these roof ventilation units will help keep the heat away more effectively. For homes with more than two bedrooms, for example, 2 or more whirly birds will work best. Three bedrooms may require 2 whirly birds; four bedrooms may need 3 whirly birds; and so on. It may also depend on the size of rooms and the size of whirly birds.
Whirly birds cost anywhere from $60 to $140, depending on factors like their make and size. They are easy to install, and it’s even possible to DIY if you want to save on installation cost. You can find a lot of installation guides and tutorials online. Be prepared with all the tools to install whirly birds yourself — ladder, marking pen, drill, and angle grinder are just some of the tools you will need.
While you can do this yourself, it is highly advisable to leave this job to a professional. This is to eliminate the risk of accidents like falling off the roof which may result in permanent injuries. Roof professionals have training and experience working at heights, and are guaranteed to deliver professional results!
For you roof projects like restoration, painting, repair, and others, contact the Fussy Roof Restorations team. We are the experts in the trade, backed with years of experience working with clients across Gold Coast, Brisbane, and Sunshine Coast.
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