You can stay cool in the summertime, even without an air conditioner. Here are 10 summer hacks to keep your home cool and comfortable.
Many areas are experiencing records heat this summer and it can be a challenge to stay cool without breaking the bank on the utility bill. If you can’t get to a pool, waterpark, or air-conditioned café, here are a few tips to keep your home cool without turning on the a/c.
1. Keep The Curtains Closed
It may be tempting to let the summer sun flood your indoor space, but that’s also the fastest way to heat up your home. Up to 30% of unwanted heat comes from your windows. Pay special attention to east- and south-facing windows as they receive the most sun. Try blackout curtains or heat reflective window film for rooms that tend to heat up easily.
2. Unplug Electronics
All of your gadgets, phones, appliances, tvs, computers, surge protectors, etc, are giving off a little bit of heat when they’re turned on. Turning off electronics when not in use will help reduce heat accumulation in your home as well as help to reduce your electric bill. It’s a good idea to completely unplug unused electronics and chargers as they can still draw some electricity even when not in use.
3. Try A Fan Hack
There are several brilliant fan hacks on the internet that produce almost a/c-like results for minimal cost. The absolute simplest method is to place a bowl of ice in front of a fan. Voila! Makeshift a/c. If you're up for a little more DIY-action, try out these designs:
4. Change Your Linens
If your sheets aren’t seasonal, you’re doing it wrong. Textiles can be excellent for heating you up or cooling you down, depending on the type. Flannel and fleece is great for holding in heat for the winter, but in the summer you should opt for cotton as it breathes easier and doesn’t trap in as much heat. If you’re a really hot sleeper, you can try moisture wicking sheets made out of tech fabrics used for athletic clothing. These specially designed fabrics are breathable, quick-drying, and help to regulate temperature.
5. Regulate Your Body Temperature
If you can’t control your environment, you can at least control your body. Cold foods and drinks can help cool your body temperature and make the heat more bareable. Iced beverages are easiest, and popsicles or flavored ice are great summer treats with minimal calories. You can also hold ice cubes or a cold cloth on strong-pulsed areas like your neck and wrists to help cool yourself from the inside out.
6. Remove Hot Air
Besides your typical house fans, exhaust fans in your kitchen and bathrooms can help to push the hot air out of your home. An attic fan is another smart and inexpensive option that can help in cooling the whole house.
7. Create Airways
Open windows and doors strategically to create airways and contain cool air. Take advantage of cool temperatures in the evening and open doors and windows to create airflow and pull in fresh, cool air. In the daytime, close windows and doors to keep cool air contained.
8. Change Your Lightbulbs
If you’re still using incandencent light bulbs, not only are they inefficient, but they are also heating up your house. Incandecent bulbs waste about 90% of their energy in heat. Switch to CFL or compact fluorescent bulbs to save energy and reduce heat.
9. Fire Up The Grill
Cooking inside is like turning on the heater. Transfer your cooking to your outdoor kitchen or barbecue. You can cook just about anything on a grill! Ask google, it knows.
10. Add Insulation
If you’re willing to spend a little bit of money, your best bet for climate control is insulation. The first thing to check is your roof and attic. As much as 20% of your energy bill can be saved by good roof insulation. Next, weatherproof all of your doors and seal any cracks around windows, baseboards, and doors. If you still have room in your budget, energy efficient, double-paned windows offer much better insulation and climate control than single-paned windows. Lastly, awnings and shade trees can provide sun relief and cool down your home.