I’ve managed to go two weeks with almost no progress in the kitchen remodeling. I finally got the thin-set mortar mix and that works much better than mortar and spackle. It goes on much easier and has a finer texture, which is perfect for the small crevices in which the mix is applied.

For whatever reason, it has been very hot for the last couple of days. This weekend was the worst. The part I hate the most is that it is now cool outside, just 72, but inside it is 83 degrees. Even with all of the windows open, the air simply isn’t moving. Antonia and I decided that when we replace the space heaters with central heating, we’ll also enquire about air conditioning as well. Still, I thought there must be something else that can be done. We won’t be getting an HVAC system for this house probably until next year, and in any case, there has to be a more efficient way to cool the house in the evening.

Thankfully, while flipping through Popular Science magazine, I came across a product showcase page, which included a device called a “whole house fan.” I visited the web site and read all about it. There are numerous manufacturers, and one in particular makes quite nice units. I learned that to effectively utilize a whole house fan, I would need extra venting in the attic, which is not a big deal. Basically I’ll cut holes in the walls and install louvers. And cutting a hole in the ceiling of the hallway is no problem either. The tricky part for me will be installing an electrical outlet in the attic. I’ve never done electrical work before, but this task should be simple enough for me.

Anyway, the principle of the whole house fan is that it sucks the air out of the house and blows it all into the attic. This is where the venting is critical—it keeps the stale attic air from being pushed down into the house again. Anyway, with a unit like the Tamarack “Ghost”, we can expect to push the entire volume of air in our house in about 3 minutes. Granted, that won’t pull every cubic foot of air out of every corner of the house, so it will take some time for the cooling to occur. Nonetheless, during the course of the evening, the house will be cooled significantly, quite possibly to the temperature outside.

I understand that this will not replace our A/C system—we still want that to cool the house during the hottest part of the day. But at the end of the day, we can turn off the A/C and go with the house fan to pull in the cool outside air. For a relatively small amount of money, we can be cooling our house naturally and quietly.