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How to Cool Down a Room without AC

Woman Closing Window Curtain

Woman Closing Window Curtain

T here’s no doubt that the AC is the most powerful solution against heat, but, considering the fact that these units are so expensive to buy and to run, an alternative may be in question. Yes, it is possible to live a good life without a mechanism that can draw the heat for you. The truth is, though, that you will have to put up some effort to cool your room, and maybe your entire house, through other means. But, if you are determined, keep reading and try our suggestions.

What Is the Ideal Indoor Temperature?

Experts say that you will feel the most comfortable at a temperature between 70 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer. This, if you are active inside the house. At night, a lower temperature is recommended, somewhere between 65 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit, as this is the temperature range that will make you sleep the most peacefully.

If you were using an AC, things would have been so simple. You would have set the thermostat, and it would have done everything for you by turning the machine on and off according to the measurements. However, in the present case, you will need to rely on a good thermometer to tell you if you’ve got it right. Or you can trust your senses. Your body will tell you if it feels uncomfortable.

How to Cool Down a Room Naturally (Without AC)?

There’s so much you can do that you will probably need to decide which of our suggestions work best for you. Some solutions are cheaper while others may require an investment. Nevertheless, all of them are either energy-effective or require no energy at all. And they are natural, so you don’t need to worry about Freon exposure.

Close your doors and windows

The first thing you will feel you need to do when dealing with heat is to open everything, but this is not the right approach. If it seems hot inside, there’s even hotter outside, so you will just invite the hotness inside your room. So, keep them shut and use drapes and curtains to keep the sun rays from reaching inside. In some cases, you can even make the curtains damp and use them as a cool barrier. The sun will dry them eventually, and you can repeat the process. However, note that this will make them deteriorate faster.

Woman Closing Window Curtain

Woman Closing Window Curtain

Use blackout curtains

Made of a synthetic material that reflects the sun rays, these types of curtains cool your room by not letting the sun in. They indeed make the room darker, but we guarantee that a bulb doesn’t produce the amount of heat that could enter your window if no curtains were installed (Investing in an eco model may be a good idea though). Plus, how nice it would be to have the shade in the afternoon when a nap is just the most perfect idea?

Make the best of your fan

Here’s an excellent trick that can be used in extreme heat days. Fill a recipient with ice and place it in front of a fan. The airflow will go first through the ice, losing heat and gaining amazing coolness. Thus, the air will be circulated and cooled down almost the way an air conditioner would do it. But the costs will be lower.

A nice alternative could be a portable evaporative air cooler, which can provide cool mist wherever you go. Many of these units can be connected to a laptop or power bank through USB so they can run even if you don’t have access to an outlet.

Install a ceiling fan in the attic

These things do exist and can make a huge difference. The roof is the most exposed to the sun, and all the heat is transmitted through the attic inside your rooms. The good news is that you can pick a solar-powered model and not spend a penny on energy. It is an investment, but that’s all. After that, you will just enjoy the results and keep the rest of the money in your pockets.

Check out our selection of solar attic fans and start casting the heat away from your home by using its source to power your unit.

Place box fans in your windows

The secret here is to face them outward. Thus, they will work to keep the hot air out and get your room vented. You don’t want to cut out all the fresh air supply unless you’ve got an air purifier working to remove allergens and bacteria. Otherwise, these contaminants will spread and become dangerous for your health.

Take a look at our best box fans and pick the ones that go best with your windows. You can use them for greenhouses as well to keep your plants fresh and cool when extreme heat hits.

Grilling is better in the summer

Firing up the stove when the sun is blazing outside is just a poor idea. It will ruin all your effort in cooling down the space. So, get everything outside. You may spend an hour next to a hot grill but you can set the table inside and enjoy the coolness while eating. If you have guests over, they will surely appreciate your effort.

Use those bathroom fans

Their purpose indeed is to ensure proper ventilation, so humidity doesn’t build up, and remove unpleasant odors, but they can have a third function. As they draw the hot air and allow cool air to replace it, they are a cheaper alternative to ACs. Plus, they dehumidify the air, creating a more comfortable atmosphere and reducing allergy-like symptoms and the risk of mold growth.

Install a dehumidifier

High humidity goes hand in hand with high temperatures, and, in many cases, it makes things worse. When the air is hot, we tend to sweat more, but if the humidity is high, the sweat cannot evaporate. This increases the discomfort and often can lead to hyperventilation for people who suffer from chronic diseases.

By installing a dehumidifier, you will reduce the symptoms and improve your life. However, it needs to be combined with an air cooling method, as lowering humidity won’t be enough if the environment is particularly hot.

Check out these dehumidifiers for bedroom and choose to keep your home comfortable. These models come with excellent moisture removal capabilities and have low noise levels, perfect for providing a restful sleep.

Give your electronics a break

Turn off everything you are not using. You know how hot a laptop can turn in the summer or how much your phone feels after you use it extensively. If you don’t need to work, try finding other methods to entertain yourself. When the air is too hot, a return to the old paper books may be a nice idea. You can add a large glass of lemonade and spend a nice afternoon reading about what concerns you the most. All while giving a well-deserved rest to your electronics.

House Surrounded by Trees

House Surrounded by Trees

Help the nature help you

This may seem like a large project and it is. It will extend for many years, but it will bring you good results in the end. Plant trees around your home and pick species that grow tall and can provide shade. Let the landscape work in your favor. Vegetation, in general, is known to provide a cooler environment, but you need to be careful with ivy or other plants that would climb to your walls, as they can increase humidity and affect the structure in time.

Vent your room during the night

At night, open the tops of the windows and use a ceiling fan or any other fan you have around to circulate the air. Thus, the hot air will be released outside and replaced with cooler air. At night, the temperature drops outside, and you can use this to your advantage. When the morning arrives, the temperature inside will be lower, and you can start closing the windows and using the drapes to preserve it.

See Dyson AM07 for advanced room venting. This high-end unit can circulate the air in medium to large rooms, with a direct effect on the temperature levels.

Spot cool your desk or bed

If you are spending a lot of time working at your desk, a small fan that can offer you the exact amount of coolness without drawing too much energy could be ideal. You can use it during the night as well to dry the air and cast sweat out of your skin, allowing it to breathe. However, make sure the fan is quiet, as it will be positioned in your proximity and you will hear it running.

Set your ceiling fan to rotate counter-clockwise

By doing this, you allow the fan to push the hot air down, making it more effective in the summer. If the temperatures are extreme, use it at higher speeds. Additionally, make sure it is clean and greased, so it can run at its highest capacity.

Some Tricks to Cool Yourself Instead

If you don’t manage to reduce the temperature of the air in the room, the good news is that you have plenty to do to cool your body. In the end, this is the aim: to get yourself comfortable. Here is some advice that will help you a lot:

Use the power of the freezer

Before going to sleep, place your sheets in the freezer. Let them get crisp and then enjoy their coolness as you go to bed. The low temperature in the sheets will act upon your body and decrease its temperature as well, as they reach the thermal balance. An alternative would be to use damp sheets, but the moisture may too much to bear to sensitive people, who could wake up in the morning with a sore throat, muscular pain, or even a cold.

Use cotton sheets and wear cotton clothes

Cotton absorbs sweat and allows the skin to breathe. This is why it is highly recommended in the summer. But make sure to pick light clothes that leave as much skin out as possible. Moreover, we recommend washing the beddings more often as they may collect more dust and dust mites in this period when the humidity is higher.

Cool your strong-pulsed areas

Apply ice or a wet cloth on your neck or your wrists to lower your body temperature. If your ancestors have survived without an AC, you can too. Another good trick could be to keep a bowl with cold water next to your bed and dip your foot in it if you feel overheated over the night.

The Bottom Line

If used daily, these methods can get you through the summer with just a few dollars a month. Or no dollar at all if you decide to skip the fans. The idea is that it is doable, but, if after reading this article, you’ve got to the conclusion that the effort is just too much, take a look at these window ACs. They are not too expensive to run after all, and nobody will blame you if you prefer your comfort. If, on the contrary, you are decided to start your fight with the heat, all AC-free, then way to go. We’ve tested some of these methods ourselves, and we can guarantee that they work.

Lillian Davies
Lillian Davies
Lillian is a fresh college graduate who has lived in Tucson for most of her life, battling the torrid heat ever since she was a child. She is quite versed in the topic of thermal comfort and what solutions work to make conditions more bearable when the temperatures go haywire, which makes her knowledgeable in the topics she writes about here. Since she is a perfectionist, Lilian always takes time to polish her articles before release, which makes her an irreplaceable part of the team.
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