There are simple ways you can stay cool without air conditioning, keep your power bill down and fight climate change at the same time.
Summer time are coming, and for most people that means it’s time to crank up the AC. But air conditioning can be expensive, often adding hundreds of dollars to a household’s monthly electric bill. It’s also very Eco-unfriendly, requiring power companies to burn more fossil fuels to provide electricity. (And burning these fuels makes summers even hotter by contributing to global warming!)
Here are 12 ways to fight that urge by keeping your house cooler naturally
1.Block out the sunlight. Invest in blackout drapes or wooden shutters, especially on the southern and western portions of your house. Keeping out summer sunlight is one of the best ways to lower indoor temperatures.
2.Make sure your ceiling fans are running counter clockwise. Most modern fans will have a little switch on the side to reverse their direction. You want the fan to go clockwise in winter to push warm air down and reverse it in the summer to circulate cool air.
3.Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent or LED’s. Old-fashioned incandescent light bulbs throw off a lot of heat. (They also suck up lots of electricity.) Modern compact fluorescent and LED bulbs may be more expensive initially, but they consume much less power and run much cooler.
4.Be reflective. You can further increase your home’s albedo (that’s the amount of sunlight it reflects) by coating your south and west facing windows with reflective film.
5.Avoid the stove and oven. Both of these will add unnecessary heat to the house. Instead, fire up that outdoor grill or whip up a salad or sandwich. Your rice cooker, slow cooker, and pressure cooker are other alternatives to heating up the house with the stove or oven.
6.Try a buckwheat pillow. If the heat is preventing you from sleeping, switching to a buckwheat pillow can make a big difference, since buckwheat doesn’t hold on to your body heat like conventional pillows do.
7.Get made in the shade. If you can plant trees on your home’s southern and western exposures, do so. Natural shade is an excellent long-term energy-saving investment.
8.Let the cool evening air in. If temperatures are on the chilly side after the sun goes down, crack a few windows open to let a breeze come through and cool the house. Just be sure to close them before the temperature starts to rise again!
9.Grab a towel. A towel soaked in cold water is a great way to cool down. Apply it to your neck, wrists, and forehead for some relief during the hottest part of the day.
10.Plant a tree. If you can, plant trees on the side of your house that gets the most sun. The extra shade will protect your home from the sun’s rays.
11.Drink icy beverages. This one seems like a no-brainer, but it still bears mentioning. What better way to beat the heat than to cool your body from the inside out?
12.Insulate! You want to keep cool air inside, so grab that caulk gun and seal off anywhere that air might be escaping. A handy draft dodger can help seal up those tricky leaks at the bottoms of doors and windows.
Do you have any favorite ways to keep your finger off of the thermostat? Share your tips in the comments!
Reference and sources:
http://www.veglov.com 5 percent of the energy we consume in the U.S. each year. That’s about 140 million tons of CO2 emissions annually!