HOW TO COOL A ROOM WITHOUT AIR CONDITIONING
JUN 16, 2017
Whether your air conditioning is on the fritz and you are waiting on the AC repair or you are looking for ways to cut down on its usage this summer to promote energy efficiency and reduce utility bills, one of the questions we are most frequently asked is how to cool a room without air conditioning. Here, we explore some methods you can take to do just that.
COOL A ROOM WITHOUT AIR CONDITIONING
INDOOR WINDOW COVERINGS
Window coverings are among the most effective ways to cool a room without air conditioning. Broadly speaking, the types of indoor window coverings that can be used are blinds, curtains or draperies and films. However, there are many options within each of those broad categories to choose from. Cellular shades tend to offer the most efficiency as far as blinds go. Meanwhile heavy, blackout curtains specially made to insulate rooms from heat (or cold in the winter) are the better bet on that front.
EXTERIOR WINDOW COVERINGS
On the exterior of your home, solar shades are an incredibly popular option. These screens attach to your windows on the outside and work to block out the sun and protect from as much as 99 percent of UV rays, depending on the model. Fixed panels offer a streamlined look, easy installation and tend to last for longer, but roller models offer the option of rolling them up on cool days. Solar shades come in a variety of price points and colors.
Applying a film for windows is a cheaper approach on this front for how to keep a room cool without air conditioning. Look for one specifically designed to be heat reflecting — and be aware that these films will also block out heat in the winter, meaning that they are best suited to areas that do not get too cool in the winter and that have long periods of heat (just like us in the Valley of the Sun).
Alternatively, exterior shutters can be effective if well installed as well. However, many Phoenix-area homeowners gravitate away from this option because of their cosmetic effect when added to types of homes built in this area. If exterior shutters would look good on your home or you already have decorative exterior shutters, it may be worth looking into this solution for how to cool a room without air conditioning.
You may also consider a combination of indoor and outdoor window coverings to maximize effectiveness.
INVEST IN AWNINGS
For those looking for additional (though more intensive) solutions to attempt to keep a room cool without air conditioning, consider awnings to windows. The University of Minnesota has some research indicating that awnings can result in as much as 21 percent energy savings for Phoenix homeowners! But to get the most effectiveness, you will want to be sure to install awnings on the windows on the south and west sides of your home.
Fans can be your best friend when it comes to how to cool a room without air conditioning. However, far too many homeowners do not use fans correctly.
First things first, if electricity costs are a concern, there is no need to have ceiling fans running when you are not home. Sure, they help circulate air — making the temperature more uniform throughout the house. But that can be accomplished pretty quickly if you flip on the ceiling fans when you get home. The primary way that ceiling fans work is by creating a breeze that has a cooling effect on your skin. If no one is in the room, the cooling effect is zilch.
Secondly, a lot of people forget to check to make sure their ceiling fans are turning the appropriate way in the summer. You see, most ceiling fans will push air down when spinning in one direction, while sucking air up to distribute warm air when spinning the other direction. It can vary from model to model, but typically you will want your ceiling fans to run counter clockwise in the summer and clockwise in the winter when you are trying to warm up your house. To be sure, stand underneath the fan to gauge whether or not it is creating a cooling breeze. If not, switch to the other direction.
Keep your home less humid by avoiding cooking, using the dishwasher, clothing washer or dryer when you are trying to keep your home cool without air conditioning. If you must use one of the aforementioned items, use a fan (especially the ventilation fan in your laundry room) to remove as much of this excess humidity as possible.
As you have probably gathered from reading this article, the real trick for how to cool a room without air conditioning is to minimize the heat gained through your windows and to do your best to keep cool air circulating throughout your home. While we hope this article is helpful, we do also hope that your AC repair service shows up soon … If not, give us a call! We have same day appointments available and our work is guaranteed. Stay cool!