• Sherri HIner

DIY Keeping Cool


DIY Keeping Cool

It is crazy that it is getting hot so early, however, we need to figure out how to keep it cool, and you will feel like a DIY champ, too.

Keep your cool, and…

Cover your windows

This tip is simple, up to 30% comes from your windows, and utilizing shades, curtains and the like can save you up to 7 percent on bills and lower indoor temperatures by up to 20 degrees. Keeping the windows covered essentially prevents your home from becoming a miniature greenhouse, which is especially with south and west facing windows.

The best way is blackout curtains.

Blackout curtains block sunlight, naturally insulating the rooms in which they’re installed. Consumer Reports recommends neutral-colored curtains with white plastic backings to reduce heat gain by up to 33 percent.

At night take advantage.

Closing off unused rooms will prevent cool air from permeating these areas during the hottest part of the day. It is important to take advantage of on the cooler night hours, too, letting air flow naturally through your home.

Use a fan instead of turning on the A.C. Air conditioner does not really create a faux sea breeze, but this simple trick can. It’s magic….Fill a mixing bowl with ice (or something equally cold, like an ice pack), and position it at an angle in front of a large fan so the air whips off the ice in an extra-chilled, extra-misty state.

Swap your sheets. 600 thread count or less, cotton sheets are a smarter move this time of year as it breathes easier and stays cooler. As an added bonus, latex is a smart way to go for a pillow.

Set your ceiling fans to rotate counter-clockwise. You may not realize that your ceiling fan needs to be adjusted seasonally. Set to run counter-clockwise in the summer at a higher speed, the fan’s airflow will create a wind-chill breeze effect that will make you and your guests feel cooler.

Focus on the temperature in your body, not the house. If your ancestors survived without air conditioning, so can you. From sipping tasty iced drinks to applying a cold cloth to strong-pulsed areas like your neck and 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 you won’t be cuddling until the leaves start changing color. Also try keeping a bowl of cool water by your bed and dipping your feet if you feel warm in the middle of the night.

Turn on your bathroom fans. Or the exhaust fan in your kitchen, for that matter. Both pull the hot air that rises after you cook or take a steamy shower out of your house or apartment.

Heat-proof your bed. Go straight to the source, and put a frozen wash cloth in a baggie under your head while you sleep. For feet, fill a water bottle, and put it in the freezer before placing it at the foot of your bed. And it sounds strange, but slightly dampening your sheets or popping them in the freezer before bedtime will majorly help you chill out.

Sleep low. Heat rises, so hit the downstairs couch or basement, or put your mattress on the floor if the air feels cooler down there.

Let the night air in. during 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 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 blinds before things get too hot in the morning.

Crack your windows. To create a cooling pressure current, open the top section of windows on the downwind side of your house, and open the bottom section of windows on the upwind side. Also consider facing a box fan out one window to push hot air out, and try wetting a sheet then hanging it in front of a second open window like a curtain for a chill-infused breeze.

Ditch the incandescent lights. If you ever needed motivation to make the switch to CFLs, or compact fluorescent lamps, this is it. Incandescent bulbs waste about 90 percent of their energy in the heat they emit, so tossing them to the curb will make a small difference in cooling your home while lowering your electric bill.

Start grilling. It’s obvious, but we’re going to say it anyway: Using your oven or stove in the summer will make your house hotter. If it already feels like 100 degrees in your home, the last thing you want to do is turn on a 400-degree oven. Besides, who doesn’t want to get more mileage out of their outdoor furniture and seasonal accessories?

Make a few long-term improvements. If you’re really, really committed to the whole no-AC thing, you can make a couple 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. And additions like awnings and planting trees or vines near light-facing windows will shield your home from the sun’s rays, reduce the amount of heat your home absorbs and make your investment even more worthwhile.

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