Tuesday Tip: Stay Cool This Summer at Home Without High Electricity Bills
By Yehudit Garmaise
While blasting window unit air-conditioning units in every room is one way to beat the heat this summer, doing so can result in high electric bills at the end of the month.
By taking on a few new summer habits, New Yorkers can stay cool at home and save some money: no matter how hot and humid the weather is outside.
1. Start by setting your thermostat to one degree higher (or more) to reduce the cost of running your air conditioning so much. See whether you can feel comfortable without living in frigid cold temperatures inside. If family members have to wear sweaters inside in the summer, your air conditioning is likely set too low.
2. Take care to turn off the a/c in rooms when you leave them. No need to run air conditioning in empty rooms.
3. Make a “cold-mist machine,” which could be a fun activity for a room in which you read or do crafts with kids, by placing a shallow bowl or pan of ice in front of an electric fan, which will create icy cold breezes, instead of just swirling around hot air.
4. Close doors and seal gaps that let cool air escape from the room you are currently using. Retain cool air in the room you need it most. Door draft blockers and foam weather stripping tape for doors and windows are available on Amazon.com.
5. Keep your blinds closed when you are in rooms that face the sun to significantly bring down the temperature inside. Invest in black-out curtains to shield your home from the harsh summer sun.
6. Invest in ceiling fans, and make sure they rotate counter-clockwise to push warm air straight down and create a cooling effect.
7. Make sure your lightbulbs are “energy-saving” or LED and not Compact Florescent Lights (CFL) or incandescent, which can produce a lot of heat and cost more to burn. According to ecowatch.com, the best energy-efficient light bulbs are: Sylvania LED Light Bults, Philips Hue Smart Bulb. For those who like to dim their likes: GE Dimmable Warm White, and if you like a vintage, classic look, check out: Ascher Vintage LED Edison Bulbs.
8. Apply cold, damp cloths to the back of your neck, inside the crook of your arms, behind your knees, and behind your ears, which are pressure points that cool and relax your body.
9. Wear thinner cotton fabrics that help air circulate and allow the fabric to breathe to help your body to cool down.
10. Chill inside and out: Take cool showers and sip cold water and your favorite icy drinks throughout the day.