Three-quarters of all homes in the US have air conditioners, according to the US Department of Energy, and it raises electric bills even more during the summer. Every hour the air conditioner is turned off or set to a higher temperature is the same as putting a spare change in your bank account. This surplus change can result in significant savings over three or four months.
“We can confidently say that your HVAC system is the largest part of your utility bill, so making adjustments will be the biggest impact on your money so to speak,” said Sally Thelin, a spokeswoman for Duke Energy, which supplies energy in six states. .
Now there’s no reason to sit at home and sweat when it’s 95 degrees outside, but if you know how to cool a room without air conditioning, you can turn it off for a few hours here and there and it’ll be even cooler when you see your electric bill.
17 tips to keep your home cool without air conditioning
The Department of Energy, Duke Energy, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers and a few Florida residents have given expert advice on how to cool your home without turning on the air conditioner.
1. Add a $20 screen door
Screens on the front and back doors allow for good ventilation in the morning and evening, or all day if it’s too hot outside. You can buy a wood screen door for about $100 and pay to install it if you don’t have it handy.
But there are many and options Starting at $18, you can install it yourself by attaching it to your door frame with Velcro or a similar easy process.
2. DIY Air Conditioner DIY
Get air flowing through your home from Mother Nature or a fan cooler.
- Fill a mixing bowl or shallow bowl with ice and place it in front of a fan.
- Hang a wet sheet in front of an open window.
- Roll a towel dampened with cold water and stick it to the front of the box fan.
3. Push out hot air by placing box fans in Windows
Say goodbye to hot air. Place box fans against the windows of the rooms you use. Then turn on a ceiling fan to keep the cool air moving.
No need to buy multiple fans, just move them from the family room or kitchen to the bedroom at night.
4. Close the doors of unused rooms
Close doors to unused rooms so that cool air from a ceiling fan, cross breeze, or air conditioner can only flow into occupied areas of the house. You can roll the towel to block the space under the closed door.
5. Close the blinds and blinds
You don’t have to sit in the dark all summer. But covering the windows during the hottest part of the day prevents the sun’s rays from heating your home even more. Blackout curtains are very effective at keeping cool air inside.
6. Open the windows in the morning and evening
If morning and evening temperatures are between 50 and 70 degrees where you live, open windows to create a cross breeze. Turn it off when temperatures rise and the sun gets brighter.
7. Change the direction of the ceiling fans
Ceiling fans should rotate counterclockwise in the summer to create a downward breeze.
Hunter, the ceiling fan manufacturer, says you can set your air conditioner’s thermostat four degrees higher than your desired temperature while moving the fans in the right direction. Eighty degrees will feel like 76 degrees.
There is a switch in the center unit of most ceiling fans that changes the direction of their rotation.
(In winter they turn clockwise as the fan speed drops to recirculate the hot air that rises to the top of the room.)
8. Create an opposing breeze
For a passing breeze outside on cool summer evenings, open windows a few inches away. The fewer you open it, the more draft you create. If your windows open from the top and bottom, open the lower glass on one side of the house and the upper glass on the other.
9. Use all exhaust fans
Ventilation from a fan above kitchen ranges and a bathroom exhaust fan effectively improve air flow through your home and reduce humidity.
10. Fill cracks and leaks to keep the air cool
Keep cool air in and hot air out by filling in all the leaks and cracks in your home. Use an air sealer to seal air leaks around moving objects such as doors and windows and caulking to fill cracks and gaps in walls or fixed frames around doors and windows.
11. Use cotton sheets to keep you cool while you sleep
Cotton is one of the most breathable materials, so make sure your sheets are cotton.
12. Wear clothes made of natural fibers to stay cool during the day
Clothes made of natural fibers such as cotton or linen allow more air flow and less perspiration than synthetics when it’s hot. Make it your summer fashion choice when you’re trying to keep cool without air conditioning.
13. Sleeping and socializing in the basement
The heat is rising, so if you have a basement, set up a temporary sleeping area there. Some families have summer lunch and dinner in the basement. And it is definitely the place where children should play. (Don’t crowd too closely or you’ll experience too much body heat.) If you have a two-story home, sleep on the first floor.
14. Turn off unnecessary lights
Once again, summer 2021 need not be completely dark. But if you want to keep your home cool without air conditioning, make sure to always turn off the lights in rooms you don’t use because lamps emit heat.
15. Using devices at night
Run the dishwasher, washer, and dryer at night when it’s cold.
16. Cook in the morning
Don’t cook in the evening when the sun is high in the sky and the house is warm all day. Cook in the morning and warm it up in the microwave before dinner. Or offer more cold options, such as sandwiches, fruit, and cereal.
17. Disconnect the electronics
The electronics generate heat, so unplug them when not in use to keep your home cool. It also draws small amounts of power around the clock, even when not in use. Have you heard of the term energy vampire?
How to conserve energy when using the air conditioner
Sometimes the summer heat is so intense, ceiling fans just won’t cut it for you You have to run the air. Many of the tips above will allow you to keep your thermostat and energy bills low. Here are three other ways to reduce air conditioning use while keeping your home cool.
1. Keep the air conditioning down, not turned off when you are away
Whether the air should be left on or off when no one’s home is no longer an old debate. Some say that cooling a room after it gets hot without running the air conditioner all day requires more energy than cooling it down a few degrees of warmer.
“In general, our recommendation is to turn the volume up, but not turn it off,” said Thelen of Duke Energy. “It will work harder than zero to cool an entire house. We suggest raising it to 78 or higher and then returning to a comfortable level on the thermostat when you return.”
2. Change the air conditioning filters regularly
A dirty air filter makes the HVAC system work harder, which uses more energy.
check this out Nine energy-saving home improvements To further reduce your electricity bills.
3. Close the damper
Close the burner damper. The DOE reminds us to close the damper so that precious cold air does not escape the chimney and hot air does not enter the house.
Katherine Snow Smith is a senior writer for The Penny Hoarder.