Have You Tried These 28 Ways to Stay Cool Without an AC?
A heat dome might seem like something straight out of a dystopian novel, but it is very much the reality for over 20 million people in the US and Canada. Temperatures are soaring, and the stifling heat has everyone scrambling for their AC remotes.
But extended AC usage will lead to high electricity bills, which probably has you all the more stressed out. So, here you are, looking up ideas on how to stay cool without an AC.
Sure, there are a ton of nifty hacks to help you cool off without the air conditioner. However, if a high electric bill is your only concern, maybe you should look into smart cooling solutions such as a smart thermostat or a smart AC controller for mini-split, window, or portable air conditioners. Not only do these controllers help cut back heating and cooling costs, but they’re also great for the environment.
Before we get to our top tricks on how to stay cool without an AC, you should first know these common signs of heatstroke.
Signs of Heatstroke
One way or another, keeping yourself cool is extremely important during the summer heat. Heatstroke can be dangerous, and all preventive measures must be ensured.
The most common symptoms of heatstroke include:
- A raised body temperature, around 104 F (40 C) or even higher.
- A person entering an altered state of mind. For example, the affected person might have slurred speech, appear confused, irritable, or agitated.
- Hot and dry skin is a common symptom when the weather brings on heatstroke. Your skin might also have a flushed appearance.
- You might feel nauseous or begin to vomit.
- Breathing patterns get altered, and you may be taking rapid but shallow breaths.
- Your pulse rate will increase significantly, but it will feel weaker than usual.
- Headaches are also pretty common when having a heatstroke.
If you or someone around you have any of these symptoms, you need to find a way to cool the person down immediately. A combination of cold water and fanning should keep you safe until professional help arrives.
28 Tips on How to Stay Cool Without an AC
From something as simple as keeping your windows open at night to installing a bed fan system, these 28 tips are sure to make this summer the best you’ve had!
1. Keep Your Blinds and Curtains Closed
Swap out your light-colored summer curtains for some thick, heavy ones. Or invest in blinds or shades. Limiting the amount of sunlight that enters your home can significantly lower the temperature inside of it. This tip can also help greatly cut back AC costs.
2. Get A Cooling Wrist Band
Wrist Bands are popular with athletes who perform in hot climates. Mainly because these can effectively cool down your core temperature and thus keep your body from overheating. While this may not be the ideal alternative to an AC, it will keep you safe on long summer days.
3. Sleep In the Basement
The further away you are from direct sunlight, the cooler you will be. Since your basement is the furthest away from any natural light sources, it is probably the best place to relocate to for the summer. Use ventilation systems to get rid of any humidity and moldy smells that most basements have.
4. Allow For Air Circulation During the Night
Open your windows when the sun goes down to encourage air circulation in your house. Then, as the cooler night air flows into your home, it will push out the warm air and effectively cool down your home.
5. Get A Bed Cooling Fan System
Bed fans are forced air-cooling systems that work by blowing cold air under your covers to keep you cool. But these can be a little on the pricey side, and if you’re looking for a cost-effective solution, you would be better off investing in smart air conditioning options.
6. Get Heat-Reflective Window Films to Stay Cool Without AC
Solar films can help block out up to 50% of the heat that hits your windows. And as an added perk, these are practically invisible and are super easy to install. Imagine your home being 50% less hot with half the heat blocked out!
7. Cool Off with A Cold Shower
This tip might come off as a bit of a no-brainer, but since there are so many myths around using cold water on a hot body, we wanted to include it. Cold showers can work wonders to lower your body temperature. But, of course, we recommend that you stick to comfortable water temperatures and avoid super chilled water.
8. Spray Yourself with Cold Water
If you’ve taken one too many cold showers (if that’s even a thing!), you could settle for spritzing yourself with a bottle of chilled water. It has an impact similar to a cold shower but won’t drive your water bills through the roof.
9. Get A Bed Cooling Pad to Stay Cool Without Air Conditioning
Bed cooling systems also come in the form of a thin pad that you can place under your fitted sheet, and it acts as a personal climate control system. These devices use a combination of water and medical-grade silicone tubes to cool or heat your bed to your desired temperatures. Thereby letting you stay cool without an AC, even in the hottest climates.
10. Switch Up Your Closet
Fabrics play a major role in how well your body acclimatizes to fluctuating temperatures. Some materials help insulate you, while others, such as cotton or double gauze, wick away sweat and let your skin breathe. Choosing the right fabric can go a long way to keeping you cool.
11. Choose The Right Bed Linens
Just like fabric matters in your clothing, it also matters in your choice of bedding. You want to steer clear of velvets, leather, or other such fabrics that aren’t breathable. Instead, opt for cotton, silk, or other lightweight materials.
12. Insulate Your Attic and Walls
Insulation is often associated with winters, but it is just as crucial for dispensing heat as it is for retaining it. Ideally, you should insulate your entire living space. But if that doesn’t fit your budget, focus on insulating your attic.
13. Consider A Dehumidifier
The only thing worse than the heat is moist heat! Dehumidifiers are a miracle solution to the balmy summer air. They effectively suck out all the excess moisture from your surroundings and maintain humidity at comfortable levels.
14. Stay Cool Without AC by Using Box or Ceiling Fans Correctly
With correct usage, fans can do so much more than blow air in your face. Strategically place fans around your house so that they can serve as both your ventilation and cooling systems. This trick is super effective. Yet, surprisingly, it isn’t the first that people try out when figuring out how to stay cool without an AC.
15. Know Your Body’s Pulse Points
Your body’s cooling spots, or pulse points, are regions where the blood vessels are closest to your skin surface. Since they are this close, you can instantly cool your body temperature down by applying cold water or ice to them. Some well-known cooling spots are your wrists and the back of your neck. These are also present on the top of your feet and the insides of your elbows.
16. Ditch The Fluffy Pillow
Your head can get pretty hot in the summer, and the last thing you want is something that traps the heat inside. Pick a smaller pillow for summer to allow for more airflow around your head. You can take it a step further by investing in a Chill Pillow (aka Chillow) that keeps you cool via a cooling gel in its top layer.
17. Cook Strategically
Forget about the stews and high effort meals. Instead, summer is the time to bring out your slow cooker and crockpots, which don’t require you to be present nearby and don’t heat your home. BBQs might seem counterintuitive since you’re trying to figure out how to keep cool, but they’re great because they keep the heat outside your home.
18. Eat Smart
Making your body work more will make it feel hotter! Snack instead of having full meals. Pick foods that you can eat raw since these are far healthier, such as fruits and vegetables. As a general rule, eat fewer proteins and more fats. Also, maybe leave that alcohol bottle in the kitchen – it can wait until cooler days.
19. Upgrade Your Light Bulbs
Incandescent light bulbs lose about 90% of their energy as heat. Not only does this give you less light for the amount of energy they consume, but they also contribute to higher temperatures in your home. So, if you haven’t switched to energy-efficient light bulbs yet, this is the perfect excuse to do so.
20. Install An Awning
Awnings shield your windows from the sun’s rays and significantly cut back the amount of heat that your home absorbs. If you don’t want to commit to this solution, you can get retractable or removable awnings so that you can enjoy the sun in the winter and the shade in the summer!
21. Hydration Is Key
Water is a health elixir, but it can also help you beat the heat. Start your day with a healthy intake of plain water. Then, switch to drinks with electrolytes as the day progresses and gets hotter. It’s important to remember that high temperatures do more harm than just cause discomfort. Your body can lose up to 10 liters of water a day, so keep those electrolyte levels up.
22. Plant Vines
Wines are nature’s awning and serve a similar purpose to their artificial counterparts. For example, creepers or climbers, such as ivy, grow quickly and spread over your home walls to block excess sunlight so that your walls can stay cool.
23. Install Cooling Curtains
This is probably the simplest and most cost-efficient hack on this list. It’s so cheap, it’s practically free! Spray your curtains with cold water or let the bottom of them sit in a bucket of water. This will keep them soaked all day long and they’ll cool the air that flows in through your windows. To make this work even better, allow for air circulation.
24. Set Your Ceiling Fans to Rotate Counter-Clockwise
Not many people know this, but fans come with two settings – clockwise and counter-clockwise. The counter-clockwise setting is ideal for summer since it pushes more wind currents into your room. To change the settings, locate the small switch on your fan and turn it to your desired setting.
25. Hog The Bed to Keep Cool
Bodies generate heat and having people or pets close to yourself can make you feel hotter. So, if it’s an option, pick a place far away from other house inhabitants.
26. Close Doors to Unused Rooms
This tip might seem out of place after all that talk about ventilation and cross-breezes. But trust us when we say that closing off any unused spaces is a great tip. It will keep the cold air inside your area. You can also use this tip when using an AC since this lowers the effort your air conditioner needs to cool down your home.
27. Make A Portable Bucket AC
Desperate times call for desperate measures! If all else fails, you can always put that box fan to good use by pairing it up with a bucket, some pipes, and lots of ice. The final product is a Personal Cooling Device (PCD) that helps you stay cool in summer without air conditioning.
28. Store Your Moisturizers in The Fridge
Chilling your moisturizer before using them will feel good on your skin, but that’s not the only purpose of this hack. According to experts, using a refrigerated moisturizer can reduce rosacea and puffiness on your skin. In addition, you can double the effectiveness of this trick by using chilled aloe vera.
Why Not Invest in A Smart Cooling Solution?
All these hacks are great ways on how to stay cool without an AC. However, they’re also a bit of a hassle. They can help when your AC is out for repair, but we do have to admit that the only effective escape from the summer heat is an air conditioner.
And thanks to smart cooling solutions such as a smart AC controller and smart thermostats, you no longer need to worry about soaring electricity bills. If you’re more concerned about dust allergies, smart controllers also monitor the quality of air in your room as well as the state of your AC’s air filters. What makes these even better is that you can set cooling schedules and set up a geofence.
In a Nutshell:
As wonderful as summers are, they can also be potentially dangerous at times. And while ACs are our go-to solution in these times, they aren’t always available. So, you might have to figure out how to stay cool without an AC. For these times, cold water and circulating air are your best friends. The ideal way to deal with summers is to turn the AC on and pair it with a smart controller so that you can keep cool without stressing about the cost.