As a full-service HVAC company, we spend a lot of time thinking about air-conditioning. As summer approaches (6/20), we want to help our customers stay as cool and comfortable as possible. Rather than cranking up your air conditioner and with it your utility bill, try some new tricks to beat the heat this summer.
There are many alternative cooling solutions, such as closing window blinds by day, and doing laundry and cooking at night. Switching off the A/C and finding a new way to lower the temperature can save money, energy, and may even help you create a memory or two.
Beat the Heat Without Air Conditioning
We all have to cool off somehow, so let’s get creative!
1. Beat the Heat While You Eat
Popsicles – Popsicles are a summer staple. If you can’t wait for the ice-cream man, make delicious popsicles at home. With so many different flavors, you could enjoy a different popsicle every day of vacation. Inexpensive to make with a big payoff in flavor and fun, making and eating popsicles is a wonderful way to bond. From pineapple mint to root beer float flavor, find the recipe for the popsicle of your summer dreams, here.
Grill On – If you use your stove on a hot day, your house is going to heat up. Skip the stove all together whenever possible this summer and head outdoors to the great open grill. By saving your home from the stove’s heat, the A/C won’t have to work as hard to restore the space to a comfortable temperature. Almost anything you cook with a stove, you can cook on a grill — meats, veggies, pizzas, desserts and more! The smell of food grilling is always a delicious backdrop to outdoor summer fun. Plus, what kid (or adult!) doesn’t love a grilled hotdog by the pool?
Cold Supper – The last thing you want on a hot and heavy, summer day is a hot and heavy meal. Instead, make “cold dinners.” Think salads (potato, pasta, tuna, chicken, Greek, etc.), antipasto dishes, cold sandwiches, cold soups, hummus, dips, and spreads. Now’s the time to expand your culinary world and sip on ice cold drinks, like green tea milkshakes, Thai iced tea, watermelon-lime water, and cold cocktails.
2. Water Games
The Ready Steady Jump Rope Game – The player must jump rope a certain number of times while holding a large open cup of cold water. The water is sure to splash the person jumping, putting a refreshing twist on this schoolyard favorite. The player with the most water remaining in their cup after the required jumps is the winner. Feel free to change up the rules, add music, do double-dutch, or break up into teams!
DIY Slip-N-Slide – If you’re looking for amusement to last all afternoon, grab a few simple supplies to assemble a backyard slip-n-slide. Although any yard will suffice, an area with a slight hill is ideal. Run heavy-duty plastic wrap over the yard. Can you fit 65-feet? Do it! Double layer or fold plastic sheeting in half for additional protection and padding between you and the grass. Make sure there are no sharp rocks or twigs underneath.
Use landscape anchor pins to secure sheeting to the ground. Be sure to hammer them all the way down so arms and legs don’t get bumped on the way down. Add baby soap or any liquid soap option to create the slippery slime effect of the slip-n-slide. Turn on the sprinkler head and everyone is ready to slide. Parents and teenagers too!
What you will need:
- Heavy-duty plastic sheeting (double layer for protection!)
- Landscape anchor pins
- Baby soap, dish soap (for slippery slime effect)
- Sprinkler head (optional)
- Inner tube (optional)
See this DIY slip-n-slide project come to life, here.
3. Cool Indoor Solutions
Ice Fan – Fill a large bowl with ice and place it in front of a box fan. The air will blow off of the ice and create a chilling cool down when it reaches your skin. Plop down in front of the fan with a popsicle or cool drink and feel your body temperature instantly drop.
Consider a Cold Shower/Ice Bath – Along with several health benefits, including helping you fall into a deeper sleep, a cold shower is an effective way to cool down. Not only will you save money by using your water heater less often, but a cold shower a day is also great for your skin, hair, and overall wellbeing. Those brave enough may even take an ice bath! But if you’re looking for a quick refresh, a cold shower will do the trick. Who knows, when the summer is over, you may continue this health trend.
Cold Towel Mummification – Called the “Egyptian Method,” sleep with a cold, slightly damp sheet or towel as a blanket to lower your body temperature while heading into dream land. Use cold water to dampen the top sheet or towel, but they shouldn’t be dripping. Sleep on a dry surface and use the damp fabric as your blanket. In a super humid climate, however, this might not have the desired effect.
Another related tip is to spray a top sheet with water, put into a plastic bag and chill it in the freezer. Your icy bed sheet is sure to feel crisp.
How to enjoy comfortable sleep on hot nights:
- Avoid large or spicy foods before bed.
- Don’t consume any caffeine before bed.
- Leave your bare feet exposed.
- Turn on a fan and direct it toward the bed, but not too close to your body.
- Replace heavier bedding with lighter bedding.
- Consider putting your pillow in a plastic bag and placing in the freezer before bed.
- Crack open a window at night to increase air circulation and cool down the room.
- Flip the pillow over to its cool side.
- Rest an ice pack on your forehead or neck.
- Mist your face with a water spray bottle.
There are endless ways to stay cool this summer. Have fun with the heat! You don’t have to overrun your air conditioner to really enjoy your summer vacation.
Regardless of how high the temperature rises, you’ll always be chilling with these ideas on hand. We want to make sure you and your family are cool and comfortable all summer long.
For more tips on beating the heat and staying cool this summer, check out our other blogs on the topic:
- Passive Heating and Cooling Window Strategies
- How to Improve Home Heating & Cooling Efficiency
- Choosing the Right Ceiling Fan
- Your HVAC Maintenance Guide for All Seasons
If your air conditioner does break down this summer, contact Service Champions for trustworthy, on-time heating and air conditioning service throughout the East Bay, South Bay, and Sacramento areas.
If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to contact us.