As the days start to get hotter, people are looking for ways to remain comfortable indoors without having to solely rely on an AC unit. You may be trying to save on electricity costs or not have the space to install an air conditioner. Perhaps your existing AC unit is broken or not producing enough cool air? Regardless, there are many ways to keep your home’s indoor space cool and comfortable. Keep reading to learn about 15 ways you can lower your indoor temperature.
1. Install Blinds
Windows are responsible for letting in around 25% of the heat that lingers inside your home. You can easily avoid that amount of heat by installing shades, blinds, or curtains during summertime. For smaller windows, shop for what’s called blackout blinds. Utilize an inside mount to gain the most light-blocking capacity. Blackout curtains are installed in the same manner as you would a standard set of drapes or curtains.
2. Set Fans to Rotate the Opposite Direction
During summertime, the fan blades should spin counter-clockwise. This pushes the air that’s up at the ceiling straight down closer to the middle of the room. It’s a simple trick, yet most homeowners forget or unaware that their ceiling fan has this ability. You should also run the fan at higher speeds during hotter days.
3. Pad Your Walls and Attic
Many of the techniques that homeowners use to stay warm during wintertime can be applied during the hotter months of the year. Insulation, for instance, can trap the cool air inside and keep the hot air outside. Materials used for insulation are also relatively cheaper. Lastly, insulating your walls and ceiling can also reduce energy costs over the long term.
4. Limit Cooking and Washing at Nighttime
Most kitchen appliances generate substantial amounts of heat. Whether you’re baking a cake, roasting a whole turkey, or running dishes in the dishwasher, the heat that’s produced by these activities only serves to heat your home’s interior. If you must cook during the daytime, limit it to the smallest stove burner option or the microwave. Dishwashers, clothes washers and dryers, and ranges should be operated during cooler times of the day, like early morning or late evening.
5. Purchase a Dehumidifier
Moist heat tends to be more intolerable than dry heat. And during those moist hot days in Sacramento, where temperatures can reach upwards of 100 degrees, a dehumidifier can be an invaluable asset. Dehumidifiers pull the moisture out of the air in your home and make it more tolerable even at high temperatures. The recommended indoor humidity level is 60% or less. You can even use the water collected by the dehumidifier to care for your garden.
6. Place Ice Cubes in Front of a Fan
Always have a tray of ice cubes ready to pull out of the freeze. Remove the ice from the tray and place the cubes in a bowl. Then, place that bowl of ice in front of a fan to generate a chilly breeze that can permeate the room it is set up in.
7. Put Your Fans to Work
This refers to your bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans. These fans move clockwise and suck the hot air out of those spaces and expel it out of your home. Be sure to clean the fan blades so that it runs efficiently.
8. Consider Insulated Window Films
Window films are typically made of polyester and are claimed to cut cooling costs by as much as half. This special film deflects up to 99% UV light and up to 67% glare. It also helps protect your furniture pieces from sunlight fading. The material is available in different sizes, allowing you to only buy the amount of film you actually need.
9. Consider Buying Chill Pillows
As the name implies, chill pillows have a cooling gel inside them that disperses your body’s heat while you’re sleeping. If you don’t want the whole pillow, you can also purchase cooling pads that you slip into the pillow.
10. Go Green
Plant vines, such as ivy, around your home. These climbers can cover the walls and reduce the amount of sunlight that reaches said walls. You can also add more potted plants indoors, such as palms, Chinese evergreens, and rubber plants. While you’re at it, plant more trees around your garden. The more foliage you surround your home with, the more shade you get.
11. Open Windows at Night
Once temperatures start to drop, start opening your windows, including the ones in your bathroom, kitchen, living room, and bedroom. It’s best to install screens to prevent pests, like mosquitos and flies, from coming in. Moreover, you’ll want to have smart locks installed to prevent any break-ins.
12. Upgrade Your Lightbulbs
If you’re still using incandescent lights, it may be time to throw them out and switch to CFLs. Compact fluorescent lamp lights can help cool your home plus lower your utility bills every month.
13. Be Strategic With Your Fan Placement
Since fans merely keep air flowing instead of actually cooling it, you’ll want to be strategic with where you place them. The most ideal places to position your fans are in windows or hallways. Doing so produces a cross breeze that sucks in cooler air from the outside and displaces it to the hotter areas of your home.
14. Practice Weather Stripping
Weatherstripping is essentially a technique that reduces air drafts coming into the home through the slits of your doors and windows. The technique is commonly done during wintertime to prevent heated air from exiting the room and cool air from entering. During summertime, it keeps the cool air from leaving your home and hot air from entering.
15. Install an Awning
If you can’t grow vines on the side of your home, you can always install an awning above your windows. This gives you shade and protects your home from harmful UV light. If it’s your first time purchasing an awning, do your research on what type of material to look for. The most popular option for awnings is acrylic-based retractable awnings, which do not rot or fade over time and can be easily adjusted to meet specific shade or sun needs.
Give Us a Call Today
Although these tips can help lower your home’s indoor climate during humid summer days, we recommend getting an energy-efficient AC unit as a long-term solution to regulating temperature indoors. HVAC systems are complex and should only be installed by trained and certified HVAC professionals.
Let Gallagher's Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning help you install a new AC unit or repair your existing one. We offer cooling and heating services, indoor air quality audits, and a host of other services that you might need. Gallagher's Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning has been serving the Sacramento, CA, region, and surrounding neighborhoods for decades now, so you can be sure you’re in safe hands. Give us a call today or submit an inquiry through our website!