Once the dog days of summer have arrived, our air conditioners are working hard to keep us as cool as possible. Though there may be days when your air conditioner has trouble combating the summer’s sweltering heat, there is no need to fear. The tips below will help you keep your home cooler even when your air conditioner is struggling:
1. Decorate Your Home with Colors That Will Keep You Cool
Yes, it is true, the colors that you use to decorate your home can make a difference in how cool your home feels. When choosing colors, think about the colors you see at the beach. Consider the earth tones of the sand, shells and rocks, as well as the colors of a wave as it breaks against the shore (i.e., the crisp white crest, various hues of blue, green and gray).
Create a bedroom with light blue bedding and decorations, transform dark dining room chairs with slipcovers in a light, summer shade of green. If you use throw pillows on the furniture throughout your home, make sure to switch those out for cool summer colors as well.
(Pictured: Room Darkening Window Panels: blocks unwanted light, reducing outside noise, and shields against both the heat and cold for reduced energy costs in the summer and winter).
2. Keep Curtains and Blinds Closed at Times When the Sun Hits Your Home
While this may seem like common sense, it is important to note that as much as 30 percent of unwanted heat enters the home through the windows. Therefore, you can use curtains and shades to keep your home cooler (by as much as 20 degrees). Also, keeping your windows covered can save you almost 10 percent on your cooling costs. These tactics are especially helpful for individuals whose homes have windows facing the south and the west.
3. Window Covering Options for Those Who Want to Let Outside Light In
Choose light-colored, sheer curtains. Sheer curtains can lighten and brighten any room. Unlike darker colors, light-colored window coverings actually reflect the heat. For this reason, individuals who want to let outside light in during the summer months need to choose window coverings that have these characteristics.
Apply tint to the windows you would like to avoid using window coverings on. There are tints specifically designed to minimize the amount of heat and reduce the UV rays that enter the home.
4. Create an Outdoor Dining Area
Turning the oven and stove on during the summer months only adds to your air conditioner’s struggle; therefore, to reduce the burden you place on your air conditioner, create an outdoor cooking and eating area. With an outdoor grilling area, you can cook outside and then, as the sun sets, enjoy dinner while the temperature begins to drop.
(Pictured: Cool Gel Top Memory Foam Pillow, designed to keep you cool all night long).
5. Stay Cool While You Sleep
According to the National Sleep Foundation, both room temperatures and bed surface temperatures affect how well we sleep. Research indicates that the perfect room sleeping temperature is 65 degrees, this can be accomplished by taking advantage of fans, closed or light-colored window coverings and summer bedding colors.
There are pillows and materials available that are specifically designed to help you stay cool as you sleep: gel-infused pillows and pillows made of shredded memory foam are all great choices. Place these pillows inside a cotton or bamboo pillow cover. The Company Store offers a wide variety of cool sleeping materials, from pillows to mattress pads.
Sleeping Surfaces and Materials
The sleeping surfaces you choose for summer should consist of natural, breathable materials that wick away perspiration and allow you to remain cool. These materials include sateen, jersey, Egyptian cotton, silk and percale. Furthermore, choose bedding and linens that are lightly colored.