Beat the heat!
The long, hot summers of India can be quite unforgiving. As temperatures rise, most of us resort to keeping our homes cool by using air conditioners. The irony is, while draining our pockets to keep our houses cool, we’re also burning enough fossil fuels, making the world a hotter place.
Below are 5 simple hacks to help you stay cool without an air conditioner
1. 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.
2. Unclutter Your Room
A cluttered room feels hot! Remove unwanted curios, furniture, books, newspapers and magazines from the room to make it more airy. Throw open the windows and pack off all your synthetic drapes and thick wooly carpets that look and feel hot. Instead, invest in thin rugs made from jute and hemp that look good and feel great.
Also, replace your centerpiece with one that psychologically creates a feeling of cool calmness. Take a vase, a bowl, or any other glass vessel and fill it with cold water. Next, put in some pretty flowers (or even petals), pebbles, seashells or even fresh leaves for a whimsical piece of decor that is as summery as it gets!
3. Bring in the Nature
Strategically placed plants, shrubs and vines function as living air conditioners and can effectively cool a home. Plant shady trees and plants on east and west sides of the house to block out the sun’s rays.
Growing vines and creepers along staircase balustrades, balcony grills or indoor screens/dividers can also help keep the shaded area beneath them as much as 20 degrees cooler than the surroundings.
4. Cross Ventilate
Create a breeze inside your home by strategically opening your windows at opposite ends to enable cross ventilation. While cross-ventilation is a well-known phenomenon, not many people know that time also plays a crucial factor. The best time to open the windows during summers is between 5.00 to 8.00 am in the mornings and between 7.00 to 10.00 pm in the evening when the air is still pleasantly cool.
5. Food That Keeps You Cool
Planning a summer-specific food habit is a great strategy to say goodbye to body heat. Seasonal fruits (like watermelon, musk melon, grapes, oranges) and vegetables (like cucumber, radishes, lettuce, leafy greens and herbs like mint) can help you stay cool and energized – even when the heat turns up.
These natural ways help you and your home stay cool and save money on energy bills and rely less on air conditioning, even through the scorching summer weather.