12 Tips for a Cooler Office Space on a Budget

Alright, lads and lasses! Let’s chat about our second home – yep, you’ve guessed it, the office! It’s where we spill our morning brew, send cheeky memes to colleagues, and – oh yes, do some work. Now, being comfortable in this space? Crucial. But trying to keep it cooler than a cucumber, in the height of summer, on a tight budget? A challenge worthy of a medieval quest! If you’ve ever felt like you’re working inside a toaster oven, this guide’s for you.

closeup photo of silver iMac

  1. Understand Your Office’s Natural Flow

Before you start buying fans the size of windmills, have a squizz around your office. Which way does the sunlight stream in? Hint: you might be getting roasted by that lovely window view. Recognizing the heat zones is half the battle. And air circulation? think of it as the office’s breathing rhythm. By ensuring there aren’t hefty file cabinets blocking airflow or desks placed in the path of a refreshing breeze, you’re setting the stage for Mother Nature’s very own air-con. Remember: work with your space, not against it! And yes, depending on the current layout of your office space, this may mean a lot of extra work to rejig things, but it will be so worth it when you aren’t melting like an ice cream dropped on the tarmac in August.

  1. Use of Corrugated Roofing

Hear me out: corrugated roofing (which you can buy at https://clearambershop.com)  isn’t just for barns or garden sheds; it’s the unsung hero of office cooling. These rippled wonders are ace at insulation, keeping Sir Sun’s fiery temper at bay. If you’re looking at installation, think about colour. Lighter shades deflect sunshine rather than soak it up. It’s not just about slapping it on, though. Proper installation means ensuring there’s a gap for ventilation. And don’t even get me started on durability. Rain, hail, or shine, these bad boys are in it for the long run. Plus, they’ve got this rustic charm, adding a bit of ‘countryside chic’ to your workspace. So, the next time you think roofing, give a nod to the humble corrugated sheet. It’s not just a pretty face; it’s a budget-friendly, cool-making machine that is well worth the one-time investment.

MacBook Pro on table

  1. Invest in Energy-Efficient Curtains or Blinds

Wave goodbye to the greenhouse vibes! Curtains and blinds aren’t just showy divas, they’re the unsung guardians of your office thermostat. Think of them as the sunglasses for your windows. They play a huge role in managing that pesky sunlight and unwelcome heat. Now, not all of them wear capes. For the heroic insulating action, you’ll want to look for ones with thermal or blackout properties. And, materials? Think thick, think reflective, think “I’m going to block you out, Mr. Sun!” Bonus tip: reflective blinds can work wonders in bouncing back that blinding light. So, dress your windows smart, and you’re one step closer to the cool club!

  1. Green Solutions: Indoor Plants

Turns out, going green isn’t just for Earth Day! Your potted pals do more than just look pretty. Plants act like mini air conditioners, releasing moisture and reducing indoor temps. Fancy some natural air-purifiers? Try snake plants or spider plants. Looking for lush, broad leaves that scream tropical oasis? Peace lilies are your go-to. And, if you’re after the MVP of cooling: bring home an aloe vera. Not only will it soothe your sunburn, but it’ll also chill out your office vibes. So, deck those desks and corners with some green and let them work their cool magic!

a desktop computer sitting on top of a wooden desk

  1. DIY Desk Fans and Their Placement

When the budget’s tighter than your jeans after Christmas dinner, DIY is your BFF. Desk fans need not be those pricey, futuristic, bladeless wonders. A simple USB fan can work marvels if placed right. Aim for cross-ventilation – position the fan opposite an open window for a delightful draft. If you’re feeling a tad crafty, try making your own with some tutorials online. Upcycle old computer fans or take a dive into the DIY deep end with motor kits. Whichever route you choose, remember, it’s all about positioning. Having it blow hot air around isn’t doing anyone favours. Aim, angle, enjoy!

  1. Opt for LED Lighting

Bulbs can be sneaky little heaters! Traditional ones, especially those old-school incandescents, radiate more heat than a sunbathing lizard. Enter LEDs! Not only do they consume less energy (hello, lower bills!) but they’re also the cool kids on the block – literally. They emit the teeniest amount of heat, making them a no-brainer switch for a chill office vibe. Plus, they last yonks longer. Win-win!

a desk with a laptop on it in front of a window

  1. Rearrange Furniture for Better Airflow

Ever felt like your office is one big game of Tetris? Well, here’s another round! Furniture placement is a big player in the airflow game. A desk or shelf blocking a vent? That’s like a goalie blocking a goal – great in football, not so fab in office cooling. Take a step back, have a butcher’s at your layout. Can the sofa shift? Maybe that cabinet can scoot over a bit? Create clear paths for the air to circulate freely. Think of it as designing a dance floor for those lovely, cooling breezes to waltz right through.

  1. Regular Maintenance of Air Conditioning Units

An AC unit’s like a car. Neglect it, and it’ll conk out when you need it most! For effective chill vibes, regular maintenance is a must. Dirty filters? They’re like the sniffles, blocking airflow and making the unit work overtime (poor thing). A routine check-up, a bit of cleaning, and your AC will be humming happily. Plus, consistent maintenance means less wear and tear. And guess what? In the long run, fewer repairs and replacements, saving you a pretty penny. So, shower your AC with a bit of love, and it’ll reciprocate with lovely, cool breezes.

  1. Encourage Cooler Work Attire

Let’s talk threads! That woolly jumper might be fashionable in December, but come July, you’re just a personal walking oven. Clothes play a starring role in personal comfort. So, why not suggest a breezier summer dress code for all of the staff? Think lightweight fabrics, short sleeves, and, dare I say it, sandals (pedicured toes at the ready)! It’s simple: cooler clothing = cooler you = cooler office. It’s maths, but make it fashion. And honestly, who wouldn’t want a legit excuse to rock their new summer attire at work? Your staff will love you if you let things get a bit more free when it’s hot!

  1. Limit Use of Heat-Generating Equipment

Heat sources in the office aren’t just from the sun. They’re lurking in unsuspecting places, like that ancient photocopier or old-school desktop that generates enough heat to cook an egg, or at least it seems that way sometimes! Some gadgets and gizmos can turn your workspace into a sauna, which is exactly what you do not want to happen. Identify these hot culprits and consider a roster system, or perhaps off-peak operation. And if there’s room in the budget, consider modern, energy-efficient alternatives. They might cost a bit upfront, but the reduced heat (and electricity bills) will have you singing their praises in no time.

  1. Take it Outside

Okay, so not everyone will be able to do this, but if your office has some outdoor space, whether it be a garden, a concrete jungle of a yard, or even a roof terrace, then letting employees do their work outside, where it is practical to do so, is a great way to beat the heat and keep productivity levels as high as possible. Remember when you were at school and the teacher would let you do lessons in the playground in July? It always felt so much more freeing and you were always able to concentrate more, right? Well, the same is true for people in the workplace too.

  1. Keep Lunches Light

Something else that can really help you to keep cool in the office, but which is not related to the space itself, is your choice of lunch, If everyone in the office switches hoit, heavy lunches like curry, pasta, and roasts, for lighter ones like sandwiches and salads, then not only will the canteen -if you have one – not be pumping out lots of heat, but on a personal level, your body will feel a lot less hot and heavy too, A big, hot lunch, as you will know, can raise your temperature and make you even more sluggish, so it really is not ideal for hot office conditions.

So, there you have it, fellow office dwellers. If you are worried about it being so hot you simply cannot cope with doing any work of any kind whatsoever, and the same goes for the rest of your team, you need to do something about it, and the above ideas are all good places to start. You don’t have to do everything at once – it can be a gradual process – but by adopting some of the above suggestions you can ensure next summer is a lot less sweaty than this one!

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