It’s a battle in the summer to stay cool without breaking the bank, but it’s possible to succeed. To make things a little easier, we’ve come up with four ideas to beat the heat without cranking up the AC.
It’s always a great feeling to have your blinds open on a sunny day, but not if you’re trying to save money on your energy bill. Windows are notorious for letting in warm air, so close your blinds during the day. If you live in a house with older windows, you may even want to re-caulk the seams. It’s an easy process that you can do yourself, and it’ll save you money in both heating and cooling expenses.
If you’ve never heard of blackout curtains, you’re in for a treat. These are heavy-duty curtains designed to block out light from windows, which results in also blocking out the warmer air. They function as insulators and can even be used in doorways or hallways to seal off unused areas of the house that you don’t want to cool.
You’ve probably already thought of using fans, but make sure you’re using them correctly. There’s no point in just blowing hot air around. Strategically place them around your house to maximize the cool air you already have. Do you have a room that is generally cooler than the rest of your house? If so, place a fan facing outward at the entrance and use it to funnel the air towards the rest of the house. If you have multiple fans, form a chain with them to circulate the air around your house.
A dehumidifier should be a staple in every house. Just like the name implies, they’re designed to remove the humidity from the air, making it feel cooler. Not only will you feel more comfortable using a dehumidifier, but your house will also benefit as well. High humidity is a breeding ground for mold and mildew, and if your house consistently gets that hot, sticky feeling, it’s at risk for growing dangerous spores. Any fabric or wooden surface that remains damp could be a potential home to mold, so do your family a favor and invest in a dehumidifier.
Your appliances give off more heat than you’d imagine, so try to limit using them to early mornings or at nights. If you’ve gotten into the habit of turning on your oven or stove each evening to cook dinner, try making batch meals and then warming them up each evening. Using your outside grill is also a viable alternative to nightly meals. You should also refrain from doing laundry during the hottest parts of the day because the washer and dryer create a lot of extra heat for your air conditioner to try to cool down.
It’s a knee-jerk reaction for us to want to turn on the AC as soon as it starts getting hot, but keep these ideas in mind for the next heatwave. Your wallet will thank you.