Written by Dominique de Groot, Four Green Steps
Tuesday, 03 July 2012 11:20
How to Stay Cool: Tips to Help you Avoid the A/C, Save Energy, and Beat the Heat in an Eco-Friendly Way
The air conditioner has revolutionized where we live, how we go about our daily lives, as well as modern architecture. In many places it is not even considered a luxury item, but a necessity. I would question this belief, as people have been living for thousands of years without this modern, energy-consuming comfort. In this series of post I will be giving out some green tips on how you can beat the summer heat and avoid turning on the air-con, saving you money on your energy bill and helping your life an eco-friendly lifestyle. Over the next few weeks you will be an expert at keeping cool and comfortable without an air conditioner, all while saving money and our planet.
How to Prevent your Home from Heating up During the Summer Months:
- Insulate Your House: Insulating the walls and attic of your home can do wonders to keep the heat out of your house when temperatures soar.
- Plant trees and vines around your house: Deciduous trees can shade your home or yard during the summer and keep things cool while still letting sunlight through in winter when they lose their leaves.
- Use awnings on windows and decks to create shade: Prevent direct sunlight from entering your home and heating it up. If you’re building a new home and still in the planning stages, consider building any summer porch on the north side of your house, which is generally the shady side.
- Install external blinds or shutters: Like awnings, they will prevent direct sunlight from entering and heating your house
- Paint your roof or use light-colored roofing: Dark roofing absorbs heat. Try to choose a lighter roofing material (or paint your roof a light color) to reflect sunlight rather than absorb it.
- Adjust your pilot light: Make sure gas stove with pilot lights are set correctly. If the pilot light is set too high, it will produce excess heat that will warm your home.
- Don’t cook hot food inside: Summer is a great time to barbeque anyway, so avoid bringing new heat into the kitchen by avoiding the stove and the oven. Try grilling outside or eating cold or raw foods. Try some of our vegan and vegetarian summer recipes.
- Install a lockable exterior door that allows airflow: This will let the breeze in, allowing you to cool down the house at night, without compromising safety.
Part 2 of our Series on Staying Cool in the Summer
Part 3 of our Series on Staying Cool in the Summer
Image courtesy of Creative Commons.
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