If you live somewhere where the temperature is mild year round, count your blessings. For those of you who live where it never gets hot, you can stop reading now.
For the rest of us, especially where the temps climb over 100 consistently each summer and your electric bill climbs to double or triple that figure, these tips might be of help.
When I was a small child, one of the houses I grew up in had an attic fan. If you have one or have lived in a house that had one, you know immediately what they are, and how they help keep your house cool.
But if you have never lived in a house with one, you may think that the only way to cool your house is via an air conditioner. Not true!
Ten Ways To Beat the Heat
1. Install ceiling fans. After an air conditioner, nothing does better at keeping you cool than moving air. Ceiling fans can be a great way to keep cool. They can range in price, so don’t assume they will break your budget to purchase.
2. Open the windows all night. If you live in a quiet enough environment, once the temperature moderates after sunset, opening the windows to create a breeze is a great way to keep cool without breaking the bank.
3. Buy floor fans. You can find a variety of styles of floor fans from those that oscillate to those that don’t, from box fans to Dyson fans. Floor fans have an advantage in that you can move them around to fit the need. If the house is only moderately warm, a floor fan can be a great way to up the temp on the thermostat over night, while staying cool. That should keep your electric bill lower as well.
4. Box fan in the window in the evening. When leaving the windows open all night or all day isn’t an option (due to noise or concerns about safety), think about the advantages of putting a box fan in the window for use when the outside temperature is still cool. We have done this almost all spring this year, and it has kept the house nice and comfortable. I will set a box fan in windows and let the cool air blow in!NEW WindStream 10 inch Box Fan / Table Fan 1285 cubic feet per minute UL Listed
5. Box fan in the window in the morning. Around our part of Texas, in the summer time the temps frequently don’t drop below 80 all summer long, even at night. But in the spring time and late fall, the temps in the morning are easily lower than a comfortable temp inside which is provided by air conditioning. Open the windows and use the box fan to blow in that cool, free air! Takes out the stuffiness too!
6. Window or floor air conditioners. This may seem like an added expense, but think about it. If you cool the entire house but only stay in certain parts of that house for most of the day, you are cooling unused space. That adds to your electric bill significantly. If you have windows in which you can put a window air conditioner (and if your home’s aesthetics can handle that), you can cool the parts of the house you actually stay in. You may spend a couple of hundred dollars, but you may well find the savings off cooling the entire house recoups you cost in one or two seasons. Plus, you can usually keep the bedroom (because who prefers to sleep hot in the summer?) and a nice temp without breaking your bank.
7. Better blinds. Here at ThadThoughts central, until recently we have struggled with the heat in our bedroom caused by afternoon sun. Our bedroom faces the southwest, which means we get the brunt of the hottest part of the sun through the summer months. It makes it a challenge to keep our bedroom cool in the summer. Recently we upgraded the blinds in our room, and due to the better quality of the blinds (thicker), they keep the afternoon sunlight out of the bedroom. This has made the bedroom feel much cooler late in the afternoons, and, consequently, lets the room cool off more readily without the effort of the air conditioner.
8. Caulk and weather strip. Too many houses do their best to air condition the outside! Fix that problem by caulking around the windows, and replacing weather stripping under outside doors. This doesn’t have to cost a fortune, but pays big dividends by lowering your electric bill.
9. Grill or microwave. Best way to keep your house cool? Don’t add to the heat by using your oven. Spring and summer are great times for grilling outdoors. You’ll enjoy the experience and keep the heat out of the house. If you do cook indoors, use the microwave as much as possible.
10. Blow out the hot air. This may seem like a restatement of 5 above, but it needs to be mentioned. I have started putting the box fan in the window right around sundown to blow out the hot air from the bedroom. Removing the warm air caused by afternoon sun lets the room cool more quickly once the outside temps have dropped.
What about you? Do you have tips to share about keeping cool this summer? Why not share them with all?