There’s no doubt about it—keeping your home here in Chicago cool during the summer is expensive. According to Energy Star, Americans spend $29 billion every year to keep their homes cool. When you’re tired of trading a wad of cash to keep the sweat off your brow, you might be searching for some cheaper ways to stay cool this season.
Consider these tips and ideas for a cooler home:
- Rotate Your Fans Counterclockwise
Did you know that running your fan counterclockwise can keep your home feeling cool? It’s true. This is because fan blades turning counter clockwise create a wind chill effect in your home. It pushes the air down to create a breeze, rather than sucking up air when it rotates clockwise.
Want an easy way to tell if your fan is blowing in the right direction? Stand below it and feel for a breeze. If you can feel air blowing at you, your fan is rotating in the right direction. If you feel nothing, click the switch on the side of the fan to reverse the rotation.
- Enhance Air Circulation with Wind Flow
Ready for a crash course in air flow? Wind circulation techniques can be used to help promote the movement of wind throughout your home. By opening your windows throughout different rooms and even using fans, you can create a much cooler environment this summer.
The first step is determining which way the wind is blowing. If the wind isn’t blowing directly into your windows, airflow is greatly reduced. You’ll need to make sure that all windows are open so air pressure doesn’t push the wind back out the window. This will help maximize airflow.
Another important tip to consider is how airflow may change due to obstructions in your home. Objects such as trees, shrubs, and fencing can impact how much air will circulate through your windows as well as your home’s layout.
- Leave Your Windows Open at Night
Even though it’s hot and muggy during the day, sometimes we catch a break when it cools off at night. If there are a few nights where it cools down into the 60s, this is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of the natural cool air. Turning off your air conditioning each night for an 8-hour stretch will only help lower your utility bills.
- Install Energy Efficient Windows
Although window replacement isn’t the cheapest option upfront, it’s certainly cost effective in the long run. According to the 2017 Cost vs. Value Report, high quality vinyl window replacement yields a return on investment of roughly 75%. Furthermore, choosing energy efficient windows can help you save $465 per year when upgrading from single pane windows.
How do you know which windows to choose for maximized savings?
- Pick products certified by Energy Star
- Choose dual pane or even advanced triple pane glass
- Add argon or krypton gas for thermal efficiency
- Have your windows expertly installed for an airtight seal
While temperatures continue to rise here in Chicago, keep these tips in mind for a cooler, happier home.