Keeping your house cool during the summer doesn’t mean you have to give up on your green endeavors. In fact, there are plenty of ways to get your home’s interior temperature down without the utilities bill going up. With environmental friendliness in mind, the following six tips will help you keep your house cool without burning a hole in your wallet or the ozone layer.
Ventilate, Ventilate, Ventilate
Ventilation is the art of getting hot air out of your home and replacing it with cooler air. OK, so it’s not an art, but it’s definitely a helpful tip that'll keep your home’s temperature cool during the long summer months. To properly ventilate your house, all you need are windows and good timing.
During the day, hot air collects in your home through natural heating and heat absorption. To ventilate that warm air, simply open your windows when you notice the temperature dropping at night. The hot air will naturally escape, and the cooler night air will take its place.
Turn on the Fans
If you can’t tell already, ventilation is pretty important when it comes to keeping your house cool and environmentally friendly during the summer. The ventilation tip above is great, but there's a way to kick the ventilation process up a notch: ceiling and window fans.
When outdoor temperatures begin to drop at night, open your windows and place a window fan on the east side of the house, pulling air in and another window fan on the west side of the house pushing air out. Doing so will expedite the ventilation process. Likewise, get those ceiling fans going at night – but just remember that ceiling fans cool people, not rooms.
Landscape for Shade
If your home is exposed to direct sunlight for more than two hours a day, it can raise interior temperatures by 10 degrees or more. Planting tall shrubbery along the east and west-facing sides of your house can cut down on exposure and naturally keep your house cool.
Likewise, planting bushy, low-lying shrubs or installing trellises around your outdoor air conditioning unit will also provide shade that helps it run more efficiently. Whether you’re trying to beat the heat in your Florida new home or you’re looking for ways to keep cool in your current one, remember that shade-smart landscaping goes a long way.
Avoid Heat Producing Appliances
Your home is probably full of electronic appliances, and although most of them don’t generate much heat when in use, some of them do. Try to avoid using the top three heat-producing appliances during the day: the oven, the clothes dryer, and the dishwasher.
These hot potato appliances use heat as their main function, which does the job but also increases the interior temperature of your home. If possible, only use the oven at night or early in the morning. In addition, wash and hand dry dishes and hang dry your clothes. It’ll keep your house cool, your energy usage low, and it’s great for the environment.
Keep the Air Conditioner Running Like an Eco-Friendly Champ
When the summer unleashes record-breaking temperatures and your house is hot enough to bake bread, it’s probably time to turn on the AC. Before you go running your air conditioner around the clock, first remember to clean the filter. A dirty filter uses much more energy than a clean one.
In addition, remember the thermostat rule: 74 degrees during the day and 78 degrees at night. If your AC has to drop five degrees or more to reach the desired temperature, it’s working too hard, which isn’t good for you or the environment.
Make Use of Good Blinds
Ultraviolet rays can raise temperatures through the roof, especially during the summer. A great way to keep those rays out is by installing blinds throughout your home. Not all blinds are built the same when it comes to blocking sunlight, so skip the mini blinds and choose neutral colored, wide slat wood blinds for the greatest light blocking potential.
By following the green tips above, you’ll keep your home’s interior cool without spending a fortune in air conditioning costs.