As simple as this tip might seem, up to 30% of unwanted heat comes from your windows, and utilizing curtains and shades can save you up to 7% on electric bills, and decrease indoor temperatures by up to 20 degrees. In other words, closing the blinds prevents your home from becoming a miniature greenhouse.
2. Hack a Fan Instead of Turning on the AC
An air conditioner cannot give off a faux pas sea breeze, but this simple trick can. Fill a bowl with ice and place it at an angle in front of a large fan so the air whips off the ice in an extra-chilled, extra-misty state.
3. Swap Your Sheets
Not only does seasonally switching your bedding freshen up a room, but it’s also a great way to stay cool. While textiles like fleece blankets and flannel sheets are great for insulation, cotton is a smarter choice in summer as it breathes easier and stays cooler.
As an added treat, buy yourself some buckwheat pillows. Buckwheat hulls have a naturally occurring air space between them, so they won’t hold on to your body heat like conventional pillows.
If our ancestors survived without AC, so can we. From sipping tasty iced drinks to applying a cold cloth to strong-pulsed areas such as your neck or wrists, cooling yourself from the inside out is not a bad idea. Other tricks include being smart about your clothing choices and telling your partner that you won’t be cuddling until the leaves start to change color.
5. Sleep Low
Heat rises, so sleep on the downstairs couch or in the basement. Or you can just stick your mattress on the floor as the air could easily be a degree or two cooler down there.
6. Let the Night Air In
During the summer months, temperatures might drop during the night. If this is the case where you live, make the most of these refreshing hours by cracking open the windows before you sleep. Just be sure to close the window and blinds before things start to get hot again in the morning.
If you ever needed any motivation to make the switch to CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps), this is it. Incandescent bulbs waste about 90% of their energy in the heat that they emit, so tossing them to the curb will cool your home and lower your electricity bill.
8. Start Grilling
Using your oven or stove during the summer will obviously make your house hotter. If it already feels like 100 degrees in your home, the last thing you want to be doing is turning on a 400-degree oven. Use the grill instead and make use of your outdoor furniture and seasonal accessories.
9. Turn on the Extractor Fans in Your Bathroom or Kitchen
Turning on the extractor fans in your kitchen and bathroom will suck out the hot air that rises after you cook or take a steamy shower.