Close The Blinds
If you have nosey neighbors you may already be doing this, but one of the most effective ways to manage the temperature of your home is to keep blinds and shades closed (or at least, mostly closed) during the heat of the day. This is especially true for southern facing windows, which tend to get the most sunlight.
Install neutral color blackout curtains or thermal curtains
. These can help you in insulating cool in the summer and heat in the winter, so they have the potential to help you save energy year-round.
Make Your Windows Nocturnal
The night is the coolest time of day. Open your windows at night to naturally lower the temperature of your home. To get even more of a cross breeze, make sure you open windows on walls that are perpendicular to one another as well as ones that are opposite each other on a given level of your home. Add fans to really create a powerful breeze.
Open (And Close) Sesame!
You’re going to want to be strategic about your use of doors. Like your windows, a good rule of thumb is to keep doors in your home closed during the day and open at night. If there are rooms that you don’t use often, keep those doors closed so that cool air from main rooms don’t go to waste by drifting into them.
Stop Draft In Its Tracks
If you have older windows, then you know that draft is real. And even the most strategic door usage is susceptible to the draft from the crack at the bottom. Use draft stoppers
at the bottom of windows and doors to keep cool air in your home during the day.
Pro Hack: Make your own
draft stoppers or repurpose other household items that will be effective in reducing draft.
Adjust Your Ceiling Fans
If you have ceiling fans, make sure that they are rotating counter-clockwise
. Doing so will actually send warmer air up to your ceilings faster and create a cool wind effect that you can feel when you stand under the fan. Turn it up!
DIY Cold Front
Become your own weather person and create your very own cold front — without using AC. Fill a vessel of your choice, like a bowl, with ice. You can use other cool items, like ice packs and other frozen goods, but ice is probably most effective. Tilt it as much as possible directly behind a fan and let the chilly winds roll in. The bigger the fan, the cooler the results.
If you frequently use this fan hack, you can create a more permanent solution by creating a DIY “air conditioner” using a styrofoam beach cooler. It’s pretty straightforward to make
and can be done for $10.00 or less.
Use Lights Sparingly
Be aware of the lights you have on in your home as you move from room to room. Get into the habit of turning off lights as you leave rooms. Not only will this save you energy costs, but lights emit heat, so any unnecessary usage will only raise the temperature in your home.
Pro Hack: Get rid of incandescent bulbs
. They are slightly cheaper at the point of purchase, but they cost much more over the life of the bulb and waste so much energy. They also emit the most heat. Swap them out for Energy Star designated CFLs or LEDs.