About a fortnight ago I decided a little bit of practical
making-things activity would be good for me.
The house I'm staying in has very thick stone walls so the
temperature is pretty stable; particularly the downstairs
stays around 12°C whatever. The LPG central
heating warms the air quite nicely and the stone's all
boarded over so the surface layers warm quickly giving
reasonable thermal comfort but as soon as the heating is switched
off the temperature drops back rapidly. Over the
last few weeks it's been abnormally sunny and the upstairs,
which is less well thermally connected to the stone,
has been quite comfortable, around 20°C, most days with
not more than a quick boost of electric heating first thing
in the morning in the bedroom I use as an office.
The downstairs, with its high thermal mass and small windows,
has not followed along. This is moderately unpleasant with
the bathroom down there. Of course, the heating can deal with
that but using it just feels wrong when there's bright
sunlight falling on the outside of the building.
What I've therefore decided to
do is make a small solar warm-air collector to lean up
against the bathroom window to bring in a trickle of heat
in the hope of increasing the average temperature quicker
than it naturally would.