Dog Days of Summer – Keeping your home cooler on a budget

August is typically the hottest month of the year here in the Central New York region, and perhaps the only month that we struggle with trying to keep our homes a bit cooler.  In many cases it doesn’t make sense to install air conditioning for the short period of time that it might be needed.  Considering the small window of time that they are used, air conditioners can significantly increase your electricity costs.  If you find yourself on a budget but still needing to make your home more comfortable during the heat of the season, these ideas may be helpful to you!

  • One of the easiest things you can do is to keep your blinds and curtains closed, especially during the hottest parts of the day.  This one thing can help to keep your home about 20 degrees cooler.  
  • Allow cool air to freely circulate inside your home.  Open up doors between rooms, especially during the cooler nighttime hours. Opening your windows at night will also help to cool your house down.  
  • Consider using your outdoor grill instead of heating your kitchen with your oven and stovetop, and drink plenty of cool beverages to keep your body temperature down.  
  • Run your ceiling fans counter clockwise to draw warm air up to the ceiling and allow cooler air to flow back down to your floors where you spend your time.  You can also run your exhaust fan for a period of time in your bathrooms to help pull warmer air out of the house.  
  • Changing out your bed linens to lightweight cotton will also help to keep you more comfortable during hot weather.   
  • Try switching out your incandescent light bulbs which throw a lot of heat for cooler fluorescent CFL’s.  
  • And if all else fails, don’t forget the fan!  A small breeze can help you feel more comfortable, especially if you use a mister to slightly dampen your skin so that the fan evaporates the moisture and makes you feel cooler.  

 

For a few additional ideas and tips, check out the video below from The Savings Experiment.