8 ways to make your home cooler this summer

Last time, we talked about the recent hot weather and heat stroke and its symptoms.  Now we’d like to share a few tips on keeping the inside of your house cooler as summer marches on.

We found these tips on Care2.com.  There are more than what we have here, so please go over to that site and read the rest.  You’ll learn a lot. 

1. This one is sort of math-y, and I love knowing things like this.  Humans are comfortable in temperatures of between 72 F and 78 F if they’re wearing typical light summer clothes.  When it’s 82 in the house, a ceiling fan can make it comfortable when it provides a breeze of just 2.5 feet per second.  Most of these fans on low settings will accomplish this.

2. Make sure all air conditioner ducts are sealed.  Insulate any ducts running through unheated basements, crawl spaces, and attics.

3. This is a fun one, plus it can add a decorative touch to your yard.  Place tight-woven screens (not the regular screens that go over windows) on the outsides of your windows.  You can install them so they roll up and down and make it easy to let in more light when the heat of the day is over.  Doing this, according to Care2.com, will block 60 to 80 percent of the heat that the sun is trying to push through your windows.

4. If at all possible, use high-efficiency air conditioners.  For regular units that go in windows, get one with an energy-efficiency rating above 10.  (Your salesperson can explain all this to you if you don’t already know how energy efficiency is rated.)  If you’re doing central air, the rating should be over 12.

5. Another tip for air conditioners: make sure you have the correct size for the size (square footage) of your room.  A unit that’s too small will not only cost you more in electric bills, but it won’t do a good job of cooling.

6. When I see a home with no trees around it, I start sweating just looking at it.  Trees are awesome sun blocks, and the hot northwest Arkansas sun beating down on a home . . . well, you all know what I’m talking about.  Plant trees – even ones that are partially grown so you won’t have to wait so long to get the benefits.

7. Close windows and their curtains over them if they face the west and south during the day.  You don’t want the sun or the heat pouring in.

8. Any time you have an air conditioner running, make sure every window and door is closed tight.  Caulk around window frames, assure that doors close completely.

Nick and I don’t like being hot – especially inside our home.  We’re going to pay attention to this list of tips ourselves to help us get through our intense summers.

Follow these tips for cooling.  Enjoy the summer more.

Nick & Ellie