On hot summer days, there’s nothing nicer than coming home to a cool apartment (and nothing more miserable than coming home to a place that’s way too hot). Keep the heat and stuffiness out and the cool temperatures in by following these easy tips.
1. Keep the Shades Drawn During the Daytime
Allowing sunlight to come through the windows during afternoon hours is a guaranteed way to heat up your apartment. Simply close the blinds or draw the curtains during the hottest part of the day, especially if you work and won’t be home for most of it. If you don’t have blinds or curtains on all of your windows, make it a priority to cover the ones that let in the most sunlight first. Consider using white drapes or blinds to reflect sunlight away.
2. Buy Several Inexpensive Oscillating Fans
While turning on the air conditioner is the ultimate way to fight off the summer heat, it’s also the easiest way to run up your electric bill. Unless the heat is absolutely unbearable, use fans instead. Fans are a nice alternative to air conditioning units and can be placed strategically throughout your apartment. In the evenings you can open the windows and use a box fan to help fill your place with cool fresh air.
3. Take Advantage of Night Breezes
There’s no reason to run the air conditioner when you can simply open your windows as the temperatures drop at night, especially if you live on a second floor apartment where safety isn’t an issue. If leaving your windows open all night is a concern, only keep them open for a few hours in the evening. Switch to using a fan or two in your bedroom while you sleep. Also think about leaving doors within your apartment open to allow cool air to circulate.
4. Limit Your Use of the Stove
Summertime is not the time to be baking or cooking numerous meals in the stove. Using your stove on hot days can make the temperature in your kitchen absolutely unbearable. Consider using an outdoor grill for your meals. Nothing is more synonymous with summer than grilling food. Even with grilling, chances are you will still have to cook some meals inside. Try to cook all of your food at once, preferably on a cooler day in the week, to allow for several day’s worth of leftovers. The added bonus? You’ll save time not having to cook later in the week, too!
5. Rethink Your Lighting
Table and floor lamps give off excess heat. Anyone who has ever touched a lamp left on for several hours can testify to that statement. To keep your apartment cool, never turn on too many lamps in one room. Also consider switching to compact fluorescent light bulbs, which emit much less heat than standard incandescent light bulbs.
Remember, if you’re proactive about reducing the heat that comes into your apartment, you won’t have to use as much energy to cool it.
Rachael Weiner: I’m a communications professional for a non-profit, which financially necessitates my status as an apartment dweller. Constantly “on-the-go,” I’ve resided in five different apartments across the United States over the past five years. Roommate issues, budgeting, organizing and handling problem neighbors are my specialty.