There’s nothing worse than tossing and turning because of a roasting hot bedroom.
Most other sleep issues you can fix. Hungry? Grab a snack. Crazy mind? Read a book. But roasting hot temperature? Unless you’ve got a super quiet A/C system, we’re kind of stuck with it.
The biggest issue is understanding WHY this happens. Once we find the culprit, we can start to do something about it.
After facing this issue myself I dove into trying to find out why my bedroom was getting so warm at night. Here’s all the potential causes of a bedroom getting hot at night.
1. Not Enough Cooling Power
This may not apply to those without air conditioning, but for some this may be a case of not having enough cooling power in your bedroom. In other words, you aren’t able to cool the bedroom to a good starting temperature for sleeping.
(This is separate from the issue of the temperature rapidly rising through the night).
Don’t worry. You may not need to go out and buy a brand new air conditioning system to solve this one.
Instead, make sure your current system is working properly. Because there may be an issue with..
2. Bad Ductwork/HVAC around Your Bedroom
On average, household ductwork only has a lifespan of around 10-15 years. And over time, it’s performance continues to deteriorate.
Lots of issues can cause this. Dirty filters, dust buildup, and even leaks between connections throughout the ducting. Some reports say around 93% of US homes have bad or degraded ductwork!
Solution: If your HVAC system should be able to cool your room down – but just seems weaker lately – then it might be worth getting it inspected. Inspections aren’t cheap, but it’s better than a new system. Plus, your comfort and sleep are worth paying for.
3. Bedroom Is Up High (The Stack Effect)
Everyone knows that heat rises, and this is felt most in bedrooms that are up above the ground.
As the outside temperature cools, the heat inside your home (or apartment building) is still trapped inside your home. As a result, it begins to rise upwards and can be felt most a few hours after sundown. In summer this is pretty much right when we’re all trying to get to sleep.
The worst part is that this ‘Stack Effect’ is increased when it’s cooler outside. Heat rises due to a difference in pressure between the hot air (indoors) and cool air (outdoors). The bigger the temperature difference between your home and the outside temperature, the more that heat will rise upwards into an upstairs bedroom.
Solution: If this may be what’s affecting you, try to make sure you cool down the whole house – not just your bedroom. Cooling rooms underneath your bedroom will help prevent as much hot air rising up.
4. You’re a Hottie
As someone who reads our content here at Sleeping.Guide, I already know you must be an incredibly smart, good looking person. So hot, in fact, that your presence alone may be what’s heating up the bedroom!
I’m not kidding here, either! As anyone who’s ever spooned or been spooned by someone else knows, humans all produce a ton of body heat.
By being in a room for a long period of time – especially as a couple – our bodies naturally provide heat to the room. This isn’t a huge amount, but it’s enough to make a difference over time.
Solution: Try to avoid being in or doing things in the bedroom before you sleep. This may be challenging for those in small apartments, but giving your bedroom a chance to ‘cool off’ from any late night activities (video games, movies, drying hair, etc) can help reduce the temperature in the room before you sleep.
5. You Eat Late In The Day
This is a small tip, but it’s connected to body temperature.
Whenever we eat a lot of food our bodies use a lot of energy to digest it. Eating large, dense meals before bed will leave you super hot for a few hours afterwards.
This may sound like an old-wives tale, but it’s true! Think about how much more resilient to cold you are after you’ve eaten a good meal. It’s partly because your bodies got a lot of food to burn.
Solution: Avoid large meals before bed. If you need to eat, try to keep it as a light snack. Something like a yoghurt or glass of milk is ideal.
6. Heat Transfer from Walls/Roof
Quick question – are any of your bedroom walls in direct sunlight towards the end of the day ? Isyour bedroom directly under your roof?
If either of these are true, you may be getting some significant heat transfer in from the walls/roof.
Materials like brick and concrete take a long time to heat up because they’re so dense. The flip side is they also take a very long time to cool down. We’re talking hours here.
So, after a long hot day, your brick or concrete walls are still filled with heat. If these are next to your bedroom – they almost like a heater between you and the cooler outside air.
Solution: You can test this is out by using an infrared thermometer. Scan different areas of your room – especially those that the sun is touching in the hours before it sets. See if you can see any significant temperature differences.
Unfortunately, this is another problem that’s quite hard to fix. What you can consider is repainting the walls or roof riles. A brighter color will reflect heat away from it, instead of absorbing heat like a darker color will. This is the reasoning behind the white and other bright colors used in construction in super hot countries.
Now combine any of the above reasons with this next one and you have a recipe for disaster. It’s…
7. High Levels of Insulation
In many homes, the bedroom is one of the biggest focuses on insulation. Especially if it’s upstairs and under the attic.
As a result, it becomes difficult for any heat in the room to escape. This amplifies the conditions we’ve discussed – like body heat, rising heat, and leftover heat from the day.
Solution: Unfortunately, aside from reducing out the insulation, there’s not much we can do here. Your best bet is to try and get the room too cool for when you get into bed.
Tips for Keeping A Cool Room
Whatever the cause, trying to sleep in a hot room can be a nightmare. And not the dreaming kind.
Here’s a few tips that will help get you that cool, sleep-inducing room to get your well deserved beauty sleep.
- Minimize Heat Production. Try not to have a lot of activity (especially electrical) in the room before bed.
- Encourage Ventilation. Keep your door open, and consider using a fan to circulate air from a cooler room into your bedroom (or from your bedroom out the window).
- Use Cooler Bedding. I don’t mean upgrade to a batman duvet set. Instead, consider temperature-shedding materials. A bamboo mattress topper and cotton sheets can do wonders compared to heavy winter duvet on top of a dense mattress.
- Use a Cold-Water Bottle. Yep, it’s exactly what you think. Put a hot water bottle in the freezer and hey presto, you’ve got something to keep you cool.
- Keep The Room Cooler During The Day. Close the blinds/curtain if the window is in direct sunlight, use the room less, and keep those windows open. Especially in the evening.
There’s nothing worse than tossing and turning in the heat. I hope this quick article has helped give you an idea or two about what might be causing that late night heat.
If this content has helped you, please consider checking out some of my other related articles! I produce all of this for free, and your continued reading time really helps to support the site.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you get a great sleep 🙂