Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Day 22 of our Green Year: Cooling Down In A Green Way

Where we live, southern British Columbia, we deal with a lot of heat. While we are on top of a mountain, we enjoy not having hot nights but the days can get pretty hot and that presents a problem when you want to fight the heat. Down the road from us, there is a town where it gets to 40 degrees and where people leave the AC cranked all day long.

Nonetheless, where we are there are some air conditioners but not many, and for this day of our Green Year, we have decided to offer some tips we will be using to help beat the heat without the air conditioner.

Air conditions are horrible for the environment, and they cost you a lot of money on your energy bill. Instead, there are a few things you can do to beat the heat:
  1. Insulate Your Home: Insulating your home helps keep it warm, but it can also keep it cool. Put in the right caulking and weather stripping and you will be able to keep the heat out during the summer time. You can also put trees up to shade your home, which can lower the temperature in your home by as much as 40 percent.
  2. Open the windows on the ground floor of you house on one side only, then go to the top floor and open the windows on the opposite side. This will bring cool air into the bottom of your house and push the warm air out the top (hot air rises remember). Put some fans pointing inward on the window sill downstairs and outward upstairs to help make things work a bit better. (See diagram above)
  3. Close blinds on your large picture windows. This will prevent a lot of heat from coming into your home, it will get dark but it is not the end of the world.
  4. Keep anything that generates heat off, throughout your home. This is everything from lights, clothes dryer and more. These things will actually increase the heat in your home and make things a lot hotter.
  5. Drinking water will cool you down because your body will feel cooler and refreshed. Having hot clam chowder and hot tea is only going to make you feel, well, hot.
  6. Heat is a state of mind. If you simply try and ignore it, you will but if you focus on it and whine about it, the heat will bother you all that much more.
  7. It is going to get cold in the winter and you will wish it was hot, so just enjoy the heat while it is there. It is going to be hot, that is what summer is.
You can be assured Layla and I will be implementing all these measures in our house and in no way will there be a air conditioner running inside of it.