For many people, summer means barbecues, pool parties, picnics in the park, and beach volleyball. But it also means uncomfortable days inside the house when the heat gets too much and times when you feel like collapsing from the high temperature. It depends on where you’re located, but most summers these days feel like they are worse every year. The only solution we seem to think about is using our air-conditioning unit at home. But the thing is, electricity has become so expensive in recent years that people are trying to find ways not to turn them on as much as possible.
Sometimes, you just want to forget about what turning on the air conditioner will do to your energy bill next month. If you can only live inside your freezer, you’ll probably do it. This is especially true for those living in hot and humid climates. There seems to be no solution to this problem but to crank down the air conditioner to the lowest temperature. Wrong. You can do a lot of things to cool down your rooms and not have a mini heart attack when the energy bill arrives next month.
Choose the Right Curtains or Blinds
You need curtains or blinds that have the right material to block the rays of the sun from coming inside the house. A modern roller shade, for example, can effectively block the sunlight from streaming inside your homes, especially in the north and west-facing windows. In the south and east-facing windows, invest in a light material for the curtains so there’s enough light coming in that you won’t have to turn on the lamps and chandeliers in the house.
Plant Trees and Invest in Houseplants
Placing large potted houseplants near your window is a practical way to block the sun from streaming inside your homes. You can also use other coverings such as awnings and blinds, though plants seem to be the most gorgeous option right now. Trees that cast a shade over your home should also be planted in your yard. Deciduous trees are the best ones because they will still let the sun shine through the windows during winter.
Invest in Tinting
If you are not a fan of awnings, curtains, and blinds, you can invest in window tinting. This is especially practical for commercial buildings since curtains and blinds can be hard to maintain in an office and commercial setting. Window tinting will provide insulation to the rooms but at the same time, keep the warmth during winter, too. It will let just enough warmth to get inside during the colder days but block the sun from turning your home into an oven during summer.
Add One Degree More to the AC’s Temperature
If you will use your air conditioner, set the temperature to as high as you feel comfortable with. Then, add another degree during warmer days. This will reduce the cost of the energy that the air conditioner unit uses by as much as 10%. It will be much better if you upgrade your air conditioner unit to one with a high Energy Star rating. Do your research well and ensure that the air conditioner you will choose is the right kind for your home.
Close the Gaps
Doors and windows often have gaps, so it’s important to seal these. When you turn on the air conditioner, sealing the gaps will prevent cool air from getting out. During winter, it prevents the heat in the room from escaping. This is something you should ensure not only during summer but all throughout the different seasons. The number one reason for your high energy bill is because air conditioners are having a hard time maintaining the temperature inside the room.
Go Outdoors in the Evening
Staying indoors is a great idea during the day because you have to stay safe from the sun. However, in the afternoon and evening, when the air gets cooler, go outdoors and let the cool air in. You may even cook dinner and eat the meals outside, so you can take advantage of the cool evening breeze. That is better than trying to cook in a steamy kitchen.
Try This Hack with a Fan
The electric fan will make a great alternative to the air conditioner. But when it’s too hot, you can place a bowl of water with ice in front of the electric fan. This will turn the fan into a cold mist machine. The air will become icy-cool which is enough to make you feel comfortable during particularly hot summer days.
It’s hard not to turn that air conditioner on during summer, but the prospect of the high energy bill is quite scary. This handy guide, however, will give you ideas on how to keep the house cool even without an air conditioner. Following these will make your homes comfortable even during the most humid of days.