How to sur­vive sum­mer with­out AC

Lesotho Times - - Property -

LET’S face it: It’s hot out, and it’s only go­ing to get warmer as sum­mer goes on. While it’s tempt­ing to crank the AC or plant your­self in front of the near­est fan, th­ese aren’t the only tricks to keep­ing cool.

It turns out there are plenty of ways to buf­fer your home from the heat with­out rack­ing up your elec­tric bill. And they’ll make you feel like a DIY champ, too.

Keep your cool, and…

1. Choose cot­ton. Save the ooh-la-la satin, silk, or polyester sheets for cooler nights. Light-col­ored bed linens made of light­weight cot­ton (Egyp­tian or oth­er­wise) are breath­able and ex­cel­lent for pro­mot­ing ven­ti­la­tion and air­flow in the bed­room.

2. Feel the freezer burn. Stick sheets in the fridge or freezer for a few min­utes be­fore bed. We rec­om­mend plac­ing them in a plas­tic bag first (un­less eu de frozen pizza is your fave aro­mather­apy scent). Granted, this won’t keep you cool all night, but it will pro­vide a brief respite from heat and hu­mid­ity.

3. Get cold com­fort. Here’s a four-sea­sons tip for keep­ing util­i­ties charges down: Buy a hot wa­ter bot­tle. In win­ter, fill it with boil­ing wa­ter for toasty toes with­out crank­ing the ther­mo­stat. Dur­ing sum­mer, stick it in the freezer to cre­ate a bed-friendly ice pack. 4. Be cre­ative. If you thought fans are just for blow­ing hot air around, think again! Point box fans out the win­dows so they push hot air out, and ad­just ceil­ing fan set­tings so the blades run counter-clock­wise, pulling hot air up and out in­stead of just twirling it around the room.

5. Sleep like an Egyp­tian. If there seem to be a lot of Egyp­tian ref­er­ences in this list, it’s be­cause those Nile-dwellers knew how to do it right. The so-called “Egyp­tian method” in­volves damp­en­ing a sheet or towel in cool wa­ter and us­ing it as a blan­ket. We rec­om­mend lay­ing the damp sheets on top of a dry towel to avoid soak­ing the mat­tress.

6. Get loose. Less is def­i­nitely more when it comes to sum­mer­time jam­mies. Pick a loose, soft cot­ton shirt and shorts or un­der­wear. Go­ing full nudie dur­ing a heat wave is (un­sur­pris­ingly) con­tro­ver­sial.

Some peo­ple be­lieve it helps keep them cool, while oth­ers claim go­ing au nat­u­ral means sweat stays on the body in­stead of be­ing wicked away by fab­ric. We’re go­ing to chalk this one up to per­sonal pref­er­ence.

7. Go old-school Re­mem­ber when re­frig­er­a­tors were ice­boxes that con­tained ac­tual blocks of ice? Us nei­ther. This stay-cool trick is straight out of the ice­box era, though. Make a DIY air conditioner by po­si­tion­ing a shal­low pan or bowl (a roast­ing pan works nicely) full of ice in front of a fan. The breeze will pick up cold wa­ter from the ice’s sur­face as it melts, cre­at­ing a cool­ing mist.

8. Cre­ate a cross-breeze. In this case, hang­ing out in the cross-hairs is a good idea. Po­si­tion a fan across from a win­dow, so the wind from out­side and the fan com­bine in a cool­ing cross-breeze. Feel­ing fancy? Go buck-wild and set up mul­ti­ple fans through­out the room to make the air­flow even more bois­ter­ous.

9. Pam­per your pulses. Need to cool down, stat? To chill out su­per­fast, ap­ply ice packs or cold com­presses to pulse points at the wrists, neck, el­bows, groin, an­kles, and be­hind the knees.

10. Be a lone wolf. Sorry love­bugs, but sleep­ing alone is way bet­ter than spoon­ing for stay­ing cool. Cud­dling with a part­ner in­creases body heat, mak­ing the bed a sticky, sweaty pit of de­spair in­stead of a cool, calm oa­sis

11. Fill up the tank. Get a leg up on hy­dra­tion by drink­ing a glass of wa­ter be­fore bed. Toss­ing and turn­ing and sweat­ing at night can re­sult in de­hy­dra­tion, so get some H20 in the tank be­fore­hand. (Pro tip: Just eight ounces will do the trick, un­less you’re re­ally into those 3 a.m. bath­room runs.)

12. Cool off. A cold shower takes on a whole new mean­ing come sum­mer­time. Rins­ing off un­der a stream of tepid H20 brings down the core body tem­per­a­ture and rinses off sweat (ick) so you can hit the hay feel­ing cool and clean.

13. Get low. Hot air rises, so set up your bed, ham­mock, or cot as close to the ground as pos­si­ble to beat the heat. In a one-story home, that means haul­ing the mat­tress down from a sleep­ing loft or high bed and putting it on the floor. If you live in a multi-floor house or apart­ment, sleep on the ground floor or in the base­ment in­stead of an up­per story.

14. Turn off the lights. This tip is pretty self-ex­plana­tory. Light bulbs (even en­vi­ron­men­tally-friendly CFLS) give off heat. For­tu­nately, sum­mer means it stays light un­til eight or nine at night.

Take ad­van­tage of nat­u­ral light as much as pos­si­ble, and keep rooms cool af­ter dark by us­ing lights min­i­mally or not at all (ro­man­tic can­dle-lit din­ner, any­one?). - Gretist

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