Beat the Heat

Published On: June 15, 2018 08:08 AM NPT

It’s time to gear up for the warmest months of the year. As the temperature rises, we are slowly finding ourselves unable to sit indoors for long without turning on a fan or the AC. However, there are some simple tricks that you can apply around the house in order to cool it down. And these tricks will ensure that your electricity bills won’t hit the roof either. 

Keep the heat out
One of the best ways to ensure cool temperature inside your house is by keeping the sunrays out. Since windows alone are not able to block out the rays, consider investing in heat blocking curtains or just something you could use to cover up the window glasses when the sun comes up. These curtains will not just control the temperature of the room but also will prevent colorful carpets or rugs from getting discolored by the harsh sun. 

Later, when the temperature gets a little cooler outside, remove those curtains and let the warm air out. As the warm air rises up, cool air will replace it and the room will feel cooler. However, just make sure you close those curtains again before it warms up.

Unplug electronics
Whether it’s just your phone charger or those little red glowing lamps, anything you plug into a socket produces a certain amount of heat. Even turning them off will not work because leaving them connected contributes to the production of carbon dioxide. Thus, do not plug any appliances that require electricity unless it’s an absolute necessity. 
Also be wise while choosing your light bulbs. The traditional ones require more energy and get heated pretty soon. So, swap them with energy efficient light bulbs such as LEDs. This might also help you in reducing your electricity bills. And, during the afternoons, take full advantage of the daylight. Paint your room in bright colors so that natural light can reflect and bounce off the walls. 

Stay away from stoves
When the temperature is at its peak, try pre-planning your meals rather than randomly picking a dish that is supposed to be cooked on the stove or the oven. Instead, opt for room-temperatures dishes such as fruits or veggies to avoid getting additional heat in the house. Still, if dishes that require turning on the oven or the stove are in order then try cooking the meal outdoors before noon or after sunset. You can either fire up a charcoal grill or use portable appliances such as solar ovens and small camping stoves.

Be creative with grains
Buckwheat or rice grains aren’t just for eating purposes. With a little trick, you can employ them for a good night sleep during hot days. Simply remove the cotton or feathers from your pillow and fill them up with buckwheat. Buckwheat, being a bad conductor of heat, does not absorb any heat and prevents moisture too. Similarly, fill your pillow covers with rice and tie it. Now, leave it in the freezer for an hour or so. This compress will stay cool for at least the next thirty minutes once you take it out of the fridge. These pillows also have many other health benefits. They support the posture of your neck and create good air circulation while sleeping.

Cool your roof
The roof of your house will definitely get heated for it is exposed to direct sunlight all day long. This raises the internal temperature of the rooms that fall exactly beneath it. So for those living under cemented roofs, cover your roof with tarps or tents. You can also pour cold water on the roof and leave it wet. And for other types of roofs like tin or tiled ones, paint them in a light color that reflects light. You can find colors that are especially made for roofs only. These colors will not only prevent a tin roof from rust during the rainy season but will also reflect sunrays, thus significantly lowering the temperature in the rooms beneath it.  

Use plant shades
This may take quite a lot of time to put in place and extra attention afterwards but it will provide you the best results. A tree nearby can block more than 70% of solar radiation from entering your house. Furthermore, they also bring cool breeze to your rooms and add a landscape view to your garden. So bring home some sun-loving plants such as sunflowers, banana plants, dwarf trees, mimosa trees etc. during the winter months to reap its benefits during the summer. You can also buy plants in pots to hang them in front of your balcony or window.   

Focus on your body temperature
During the summer months, along with lowering the temperature of the house you should also focus on cooling yourself down. So, crush some ice and treat yourself to some cold drinks. Apply a wet towel to pulse points like neck and wrists. As far as possible, try to wear cotton clothes only and try sleeping on the floor or in small beds. Also, frequently dip your feet in a bowl of cold water to lower down your body temperature during sunny days. Also, remember to drink lots of water to prevent dehydration. Next, eat right. Oily and excessively seasoned foods require extra energy and time to metabolize properly. This means your body will be producing more heat causing you to feel uneasy. So opt for light food such as cucumber, watermelon, chilled milk with cereal etc. 

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