The dog days of summer are just beginning. We wonder what our relatives did back in the day when there was no air conditioning and consumer debt was limited. Guess climate change has a lot to do with it. It would be nice to have central air but really can’t afford it right now; can buy air conditioners for the windows but would need two or three units which are not in the budget either… Here are some alternative home cooling tips to help you cool off your body and your budget this summer.
Alternative Home Cooling Tips
There are some solutions to making your home cooler and more comfortable while managing debt during those summer months. Rather than going out and spending lots of dough, try some or all of these tips to manage the heat without any more debt.
Use Your Windows
Keep your windows closed, along with your blinds or shades when it is the hottest, mid-morning and afternoon. Open your windows when there is cooler night air. Closing off rooms will prevent the cool air from permeating areas during the hottest part of the day.
Fans Could Go a Long Way!
Ceiling fans can be a lifesaver in the heat. For the summer months set them to rotate counter clockwise at a higher speed. Window fans with exhaust options are great. Set it on exhaust during the day, drawing out the hot air. Then set them on the intake to create a breeze in the nighttime hours. If you are worried about your electric bill, put your fans on a timer; some even have built-in timers. Humidifiers help to remove excess moisture and make the room cooler.
Unplug, Unplug, Unplug
Did you know that anything that you plug into a socket produces heat? Unplug all unnecessary appliances or electronics when not in use. Turning them off is not enough. It’s a small contribution but a contribution nonetheless.
Cook Smart in the Summer
Try not to plan meals that require using your oven. Opt to barbecue outside, utilize the microwave, or plan for crockpot meals. This way less heat will build up inside the house or cause you to overheat.
Cool Showers & Comfortable Clothing
Be smart about your clothing options and bedding. Cotton sheets and clothing breathe easier and stay cooler. Take a cool shower before going to bed. This is a simple way to bring down your body temperature and accomplish something you already needed to do.
What Can You Improve in the Long Run?
All these things are great home cooling tips to help survive those hot summer months. You can certainly cope this year, but maybe it’s time to budget for next year! Look into getting some new windows and doors with better insulation. Ceiling fans are another good option that benefits your home throughout the year. A whole house fan uses one-tenth as much power as air conditioning. It draws cooler outside air in through open doors and windows to create a pleasant breeze that pushes hot air out through attic vents. If you do have window air conditioners, anything over ten years old will not be efficient or effective. Try to place the units in windows where there is shade, and don’t run them full blast during the daytime hours when you aren’t home. For long-term planning, you might consider doing some landscape updates and planting some trees on the sunny side of your home.
Don’t sweat it!!
Donna Conley is the Vice President and has been with ACCC since 1993. As Vice President, Ms. Conley assists the Chief Executive Officer with the day to day operations and assists with the strategic planning and growth of the organization.