Do you really want to go back to the office or do you just crave this cute office air conditioner? If you live in an apartment building or an older house that doesn’t have central air conditioning or air conditioning, the start of another summer of working from home can feel overwhelming, but there are some tips you can use. to cool your home and keep space more comfortable during the warmer months.
Trying to stay ahead of the hot summer days? We spoke to a handful of heating and cooling experts to get their advice on how to keep the temperature in your apartment or house as low as possible, without having to invest in expensive air conditioning. From the literal use of ice cubes to the strategic use of fans, here’s how to keep your cool all summer long.
Consider opening your windows (strategically!)
âOne thing that may seem obvious, but often isn’t done, is just opening the windows when the temperature is cooler outside than inside,â says Allan Lake, Founder of Good Guys Heating, Cooling and Plumbing.
In fact, a study of the operation of a heat pump in British Columbia, Canada (a heat pump is like an air conditioner but it can also provide heating) found that many participants use heat pumps to cool the interior when the heat is on. outdoor temperatures are lower than typical indoor temperatures.
“Why would someone use air conditioning when it’s colder outside than inside?” It’s probably because they want to cool the house down before going to bed and their secluded home always retains the heat from the hottest part of the day, âsays Lake. âBeing aware of the situation and opening the windows in advance could reduce or eliminate the need for air conditioning. “
Use ceiling fans to create a wind chill effect
Ceiling fans are also a great alternative when you don’t have an air conditioning unit or are looking to reduce your energy footprint. âMake sure you run the fans counterclockwise during the summer months, as this movement has the potential to cool the room by 4 to 7 degrees F,â says Steve Truett, president of ‘Aire Serv.
Cool the room with ice
âPour a glass of water, pour some ice cubes in it and place your hand over the cup. The air is cooler in here, isn’t it? According to Truett, you can oversize this cooling effect by putting a large block of ice cream on a baking sheet or in a casserole dish. âThe cooling effect of ice helps keep the room at a more comfortable temperature. “
Throw away old-fashioned incandescent lights and install energy efficient lights
Lighting is up to 12% of your energy budget, according to Truett, and these old incandescent lights give off 90% of their energy as heat, warming the room more than homeowners can realize. Replace those bulbs with CFLs (use 75% less energy and last 10 times longer) or LEDs (consume 80% less and last 25 times longer) for substantial savings and fresher rooms.
Invest in a large fan
Fans are cheaper and AC, therefore, it will always be a great alternative. âIf you have a spacious apartment, you should have at least two electric fans to cover different parts of your house,â suggests Andrew Barker, founder of HomeownerCosts.
If you want to make sure your fan is running as efficiently as possible, consider getting a Dyson Hot + Cool air purifier, which will work to keep your space temperate during the summer and winter months while also purifying the air. air your space. This can be especially useful if you live in an older building without central air conditioning.
Reduce heat from outside
âThe rooms facing south and west are the most difficult to keep cool. Draw shades on windows to reduce heat and sunlight from outside, âsuggests Truett, especially during the part of the day when the sun is shining directly into your space.
âThick, dark curtains with a white reflective back area (commonly known as blackout curtains) are the most effective in keeping a room cool from the sun. If you have a naturally cooled house design, there may be trees on the south and west sides that help shade your house in the afternoon.
Limit your use of household appliances
Running the dryer, dishwasher, and oven several times a day can produce a lot of heat in the house. âConsider reducing the number of times you do this or finding alternatives that will keep the temperature inside the house low and comfortable,â says Truett.
Position your fans strategically
At night, the key is to take advantage of the cooler outdoor temperatures. âRather than just keeping a window open, you can actually improve your efforts to cool your space by strategically placing your fans,â suggests Matthew Paxton, founder of Hypernia. Paxton suggests that you choose a room in your apartment that you want to cool the most and open the window. Then open a window on the other side of the room you just chose and place a fan next to it and point it outward. This will blow out warm air and suck in the cool outside air.