What do cucumbers, Matthew McConaughey and Antarctica have in common? They’re all cool, and you can be too if you read our hacks for beating the heat at home this summer.
The best bit is that there isn’t a skyrocketing power bill or backyard sprinkler in sight – although, let’s be honest, what grown man doesn’t enjoy running through a sprinkler?
Embrace Lightweight Linens
We all know the importance of changing our bed sheets regularly, but we don’t often consider buying different sheets for different times of the year.
Ditching the trusty doona is an obvious starting point to comfy summer sleeps, but you should also invest in good quality lightweight cotton sheets (Egyptian, if you’re feeling fancy). These lightweight cotton fibres will boost airflow during slumber and lead to a less stuffy experience than the woollen or synthetic varieties more suited for insulation.
Flick The Switches Off
Avoid unnecessary heat by unplugging all appliance when not in use. Even when they aren’t operational, electrical outlets continue emitting energy, and thus heat. Heat is bad, mmkay.
Address Your Fans
Air-conditioning units and central heating/cooling systems are a luxury that will keep you cool…and broke. If you can’t afford to run the A/C all day and night, think about reverting to fans. Not those cumbersome old spinners from your youth, but the modern alternatives that do more than just move dusty air around the room.
We love the range from Big Ass Fans, especially the Artisan range which will look schmick in just about any bachelor pad. Side note: No matter what fans you choose, remember to be smart with placement. The ideal configuration sees fans positioned across from open windows to encourage circulation and make the most of any breezes coming through the open windows.
If you have ceiling fans with speed settings, adjust it to rotate counter-clockwise at high speed as this creates a wind chill breeze effect. Another handy hack is to turn on your bathroom exhaust fan and leave it on as this will expel hot air out of the room.
The Good Kind Of Black Out
Keep all your blinds closed or curtains drawn to avoid unwanted heat seeping through like a mini greenhouse. Black out curtains are an investment piece well worth the initial outlay because they naturally insulate the home while blocking sunlight.
Close Your Windows
This may seem counterintuitive, but unless there’s a pleasant breeze blowing, a closed window will effectively cool a room quicker than an open one. Doors are no exception, so keep them closed as well.
Address Body Temperature Instead Of Home Temperature
The most overlooked solution for cooling the home often doesn’t involve cooling the home at all. Drink lots of ice water, eat frozen fruits pulled straight from the freezer and wrap your neck and wrists with ice packs. You’ll be cool in no time wondering why you ever cried “air-con!” in the first place.
Sleep Lower To The Ground
According to science, heat tends to rise so if you’ve got a low laying bed or even a stray mattress, lay that bad boy down on the ground to ensure a cool night’s slumber.
Let The Night Air Flow
Summer nights are the perfect time to let in some cool and refreshing air. This might not work if you live in a humid environment but you can definitely accelerate this process with a fan positioned in front of the window to draw in fresh air for a stuffy room.
Plant More Leafy Greens Around The Home
Get your green thumb on. Strategically placed plants outside can make a world of difference in a naturally hot home. Whilst the pay-off isn’t immediate, you’ll be feeling the natural cooling effects of a tree once it has reached about three metres in height. If the growth rate is an issue, opt instead for fasting growing vines or tall shrubs which require a bit more maintenance.
Shut Up & Cool Down
When all else fails it’s time to shut up shop. No, don’t burn down the house. Consider installing awnings, shades and shutters to your windows.
This extra layer of protection from the sun not only provides security but can also aid in reducing a home’s internal heat gain by up to 75 percent. The same can also be said for re-painting your roof a lighter colour to reflect the sun’s rays.