We have already begun to feel the scorching heat of the fast approaching summer. We change our wardrobes for lighter, cooler clothing to prepare for the hotter days or nights and in the same way we can make changes at home to keep the house – and us – cool.
1. Keep your blinds closed
As simple as this tip may seem, up to 30 percent of unwanted heat comes from your windows – using shades, curtains and the like can save you up to 7 percent on your bills and lower indoor temperatures significantly. In other words, closing the blinds essentially prevents your home from becoming a miniature greenhouse, which is especially the case for south- and west-facing windows. During the summer months, temperatures may drop during the night. If this is the case where you live, make the most of these refreshing hours by cracking the windows open before you go to bed. You can even create a wind tunnel by strategically setting up your fans to force the perfect cross breeze. Just be sure to close the windows (and the blinds) before things get too hot in the morning.
2. Be smart about your doors
The general perception of keeping your doors closed to avoid letting the heat in is counterproductive. When you close off your rooms, you prevent the cool air from permeating these areas during the hottest part of the day. Instead, keep the doors open and allow proper insulation in the room. You’ll want to capitalize on the cooler night hours, too, letting air flow naturally through your home.
3. Swap your sheets
Not only does seasonally switching up your bedding freshen up a room, it’s also a great way to keep cool. While textiles like flannel sheets and fleece blankets are fantastic for insulation, cotton is a smarter move this time of year as it breathes easier and stays cooler.
4. Make a few long-term improvements
If you’re really, really committed to the whole no-AC thing, you can make a couple of changes to your home that will keep it cooler for seasons to come. Insulated window films, for example, are a smart purchase as they work similarly to blinds. Additions like awnings and planted trees or vines on or in front of light-facing windows will shield your home from the sun’s rays to reduce the amount of heat your home absorbs and make your investment nothing but worthwhile.
So prepare now and make the changes that will keep you cooler and happier through the long hot summer. And enjoy the season.