Keeping cool during the hot summer months can be brutal—especially when your A/C is busted. Though it’s easy to just keep cranking your A/C system throughout the day to keep your home at a comfortable 70 degrees, this might not always be an option for you. That is when you have to get a bit more whacky with your cooling methods. Some of them may be practical, others may be unexpected. No matter what you choose to do, it will be better than roasting in a heat stroke. Check out some of the practical ways to save your skin!

Keep Unused Rooms Closed

It goes without saying that the more space your A/C unit needs to cover will lead to a higher drain on power. Because of this, it is incredibly beneficial for you to close the doors to rooms that don’t need to be cooled down. For instance, while your main room, kitchen, and bedrooms are probably on your top priorities, your storage room doesn’t need the same air flow.

Before you leave the house and throughout the day, make sure each one of your unimportant rooms remains closed. If it isn’t, don’t panic, just close the door and ask your housemates or children to do the same. Keeping cool can be a team effort.

Paint Your Home with Light Colors

Another potentially fun way to keep your home cool is by swapping up your paint colors. Rooms that have dark colors retain heat much more than lightly-colored ones. If you are expecting your summer to feel like the surface of the sun, switching up the style of paint can be a fun way to reduce the heat inside. Try to pick something fairly neutral. While pastel pink is lighter, it may not go with your furniture and may hurt your home’s overall resale value. In alternative, off-whites, white, light grays, and even light blues can make highly adaptable rooms from a design perspective.

Ditch Your Oven

Cooking inside on a hot day only makes the heat worse. In these cases, it may be smart to temporarily ditch the oven inside and look for alternative ways to cook your food. Obviously, you could just grab fast food, but that only goes so far. A better investment is adding an outdoor kitchen to your property, allowing you to keep the heat outside where it belongs. Alternatively, you could do tin foil dinners on the fire outside. Inside, you may want to stick to your stovetop. While it can be warm, it doesn’t take nearly as much time and energy as the oven does. Plus, it doesn’t affect the inside of your home like other methods of cooking. The possibilities for cooking are endless!

Tint Your Windows

One of the best ways to keep your home cool is by preventing sunlight from spilling in through your windows. For instance, tinted home windows block UV rays which otherwise warm up your home. Tinting them is certainly one of the most effective ways to dull the sunlight’s sting, but there are other ways you can block the sun out. For starters, if you have trees or plants, you have natural blockage that assists in your home’s temperature regulation. Don’t have this? Take it into your own hands! Build awnings over some of your windows. Invest in eco-friendly windows. Guard your home with curtains. Do whatever it takes to fight the sun’s persistent shine.

Swap Your Insulation

Next, you should probably focus on what’s sitting within your walls. Insulation is a big part of your home’s temperature regulation, and if you haven’t taken care of it since you moved in, it may be time for you to examine it. You can vouch for different kinds of insulation. One growing in popularity is natural insulation. Hire a professional to get your insulation checked. It can be a pricey fix, but it can save you a lot of money on energy in the long run. It’s never too late to make your home more energy-efficient! So, what are you waiting for?

Get Strategic with Fans

One fun way to lower your home’s average temperature is to get creative with your fan placement. Compete with your family members to find the most efficient way to cool the house down. One creative way to make things a little cooler is by placing a bowl or package of ice in front of the fan. As it oscillates, it will blow an icy air toward anyone in the room, which can be a unique and relieving experience. You can also aim for the fan to blow the air in a circulative manner, which helps keep you cool a lot. Spray yourself with water on top of that, and you’ll feel even better. You may want to buy a smaller handheld fan for rooms without easy fan access.

Cooling Blankets and Pillows

One complaint many people have is they are too warm to sleep. Either they play an endless game of pillow flipping to get to the cool side, or they have to sleep without any covers on. When you aren’t able to sleep in a warm room, you may need to break out the specialty items!

Cooling blankets and pillows utilize unique science to actually cool you down. While they probably won’t work for a full night unless it’s very hot, they can help you fall asleep in the first place.

Remove Incandescent Bulbs

The last piece of advice that can help you cool your house down is to replace your lighting. Incandescent lights, in particular, are not only one of the worst bulbs for energy-efficiency, but they also emit a lot of heat. This is terrible for your home’s cooling, and terrible for the planet.

For either of these reasons, other kinds of bulbs are recommended for lighting. It may look more expensive up front, but will save you plenty of high utility bills in the long run. If you are serious about keeping your home cool, this should be an easy step to fulfill!

And there you go! No longer will you have to be at the mercy of the sun. You now have much more control over your home’s temperature, allowing you to be completely comfortable. Just focus on the things you can control, make plans for longer projects, and make it fun!

Read this next: How It Helps to Pay More for Better Home Materials

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