Building & Renovating

There's A Way To Cool Down Your Home Without Air conditioning

Get the lowdown on how to keep the breeze flowing through your space

Original Article: Coni Tejada and Sara Silm/ Photography: Vincent Coscolluela and (Main Photo)

Have you heard about passive cooling? If you haven't, it means the cooling of a space without the use of any energy-consuming means. It leaves no carbon footprint and is cost-effective, more intelligent, natural and thus, healthier. Passive cooling also aims to harness the natural breeze and channel these to cool the interiors of the house—especially in countries with hot and humid climates like ours. If this sounds like something you want to work into your home, today is your lucky day. Architect Vincent Martin Pinpin, also a lecturer on Asian vernacular architecture, shares how to do it with ease:

1. Orient your house to maximize passive cooling.

“Your structure must be designed in order to capture and channel prevailing winds into the house to cool the space. The simplest way to ensure this is to correctly locate the structures with opening along the natural wind path (northeast-southwestern)”

2. Increase your roof’s overhang.

“Overhangs are the ends of the roof that extend beyond the house walls. Increasing overhang size also helps a lot in lowering indoor temperatures. The wider the overhang, the more thermal radiation is blocked from intruding interior spaces, thus keeping them cool.”

3. Try sun-shades.

“The same is true for sun-shades or brise-soleil that protect openings from direct thermal radiation. Basically, these block out sun’s rays and help in lowering temperatures.”

4. Grow some plants.

“Abundant greenery surrounding the house also helps in lowering the exterior temperature and act as a filter for air passing through it so that cooler air enters the interiors.”

5. Install water features.

“Ponds, pools, fountains, and waterfalls do decrease the temperature especially when air passes through these. The only drawback is that we already have a very humid climate, and having a water feature may likewise increase the humidity especially in summer.” 

This snippet is originally from the story Life's A Beach in the April 2015 issue of Real Living magazine. Download your digital copy at the Real Living App. Log on to for more details. 

More on

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