While summer seems to be winding down, the heat STILL keeps coming back for more & some areas of the country are experiencing all time high temperatures, as well as AC bills. Abigail from Thehandynest is offering up some money saving tips to stay cool this summer while you wait for the leaves to finally turn and pumpkin spice everything to appear.
It’s sweltering hot, and you can’t sleep in clothes that seemed to have been dumped in warm icky glue. Even the bed seems to want to fry you to make you leave it alone. You can do the easy thing and just turn on the air conditioner. What’s to stop you? Well, bills… and Mother Earth. So how should you go about saving the planet and stay cool while at it? You could try the following tips and see if they work for you as they have for many others.
Before You Sleep
You can take preemptive measures to keep cool before you go to bed. Get into loose cotton clothes or just go nude (we won’t judge). Keep yourself hydrated with a glass of water before hitting the sack. A cold shower not only makes you feel squeaky clean, the resulting coolness helps sending you off quickly to the Sandman.
Reducing Heat from Appliances
Instead of using the oven and releasing great heat waves into your home, use the microwave or grill outside. Go ahead and install energy efficient lights, which would diminish the amount of energy lost as heat. Keep the lights off and unplug all electronic devices that are not in use when you go to sleep; otherwise they will remain as more sources of heat.
Cold Cotton Sheets
Switch your current bed sheets to the breathable fabric of cotton; it helps air circulation in the bedroom. Before you put them on your bed, keep them in the freezer for a while (in a plastic bag) for added, though temporary, coolness. Also, change your cotton pillows to frozen buckwheat ones which would absorb less body heat and stay cool for half an hour.
DIY Air Coolers
Want to beat physics with physics? Adjust the ceiling fan to turn counter-clock wise so that it pulls in hot air and stirs up the dense cold air near the floor. For box fans, place them facing the window to push out hot air (when the temperature outside is higher). Or you can keep a bunch of ice in a shallow bowl before a fan. The fan will blow the cool air evaporating from the ice towards you. On a larger scale, you can try hosing stone pavements next to your home too.
Cold Water Bottles
Why waste hot water bottles in the summer? Despite the name, these bottles can be used to keep you cool in bed if they are filled with ice. Just put water in the bottles and place them in the freezer to use at night.
Dampening a towel or a sheet to use as a blanket (with a dry towel underneath to keep the mattress dry) can help keep the heat away. Otherwise, you can hang it in front of the windows to cool down the temperature inside.
Cold Food and Beverages
If you want to lower your inner body temperature fast, eat cold things. Ice cream, lemonade, cold drinks – anything sweet (umm, personal preference) and cold helps. You can keep your water filter pitchers in the fridge for long cool draughts to effectively quench your burning thirst.
Why not help the wind that is naturally blowing into the room? Place your fan in front of the window, and the winds from outside and from your fan will combine into a cool cross breeze. The more windows and fans you have, the more cool air for you to enjoy.
On the other hand, you can just go wild and sleep on a hammock suspended in air. If you like the feel of a stable bed beneath you though, just make sure that it placed as low to the ground as possible, to keep out of the way of the rising hot air.
Shaded areas have lower temperatures and so, to give your green soul more content, strategically plant large branching trees near your house. They will act as umbrellas to ward of the glaring rays of the sun while cleaning up some of the excess carbon dioxide. They would even help raise the value of the land (talk about long term investments!).
With the AC on
If you decide that you really do need the AC, make sure that all the door and window cracks (as well as those in the pipes) in your house are sealed so that none of the precious cold air goes to waste. Use the thermostat to keep your house warmer than the outside when you’re out and set it to cool an hour before your return to minimize the pressure on the AC. Remember to regularly replace air filters to ensure smooth air flow. Regardless of your decision on ACs, you can find ways to beat the heat and conserve energy.
After all, you have squirt guns and swimming pools to have fun and stay cool with Mother Earth’s sincere blessing!
Abigail is the founder of Thehandynest, where she and her trusted blog that’s full of tutorials, ideas, advice and information will inspire you and help you with your home improvement and other needs. She is also a mother of two where she enjoys her passion and her dream of making the best place for her children.