You’ve just gotten the news; your AC unit needs to be replaced. What do you do? Let’s face it: Las Vegas isn’t just hot; it’s sweltering. While the heat makes spending the entire day in a cold shower sound appealing, the ensuing water bill doesn’t quite make it worth it.
Finding ways to beat the heat in smothering temperatures is more important than ever since heatstroke and heat exhaustion can both be extremely dangerous.
10 Ways to Cool Off Without AC
So while you wait for the technician to repair your air conditioning unit or install a new one, we have some suggestions that can help get the temperature inside to a more manageable level. They’ll make you feel like a DIY superstar, too.
1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
Dehydration occurs when your body loses more water than it takes in. This can easily happen when your body is exposed to extreme heat and starts to sweat in overdrive to try to cool you down. If you don’t continually drink enough water to replace what your body sweats out, then dangerous dehydration will take over and make you sick.
The CDC recommends drinking around two cups of cold water just before you are exposed to extreme heat, and to continue drinking at least another glass of water several times per hour. Be careful to add in something like a sports drink to replenish the electrolytes that are lost during sweat that water does not naturally contain.
Related: It’s Hot, And My AC Is Not Working!
2. Go ahead and get wet.
Getting in the pool and taking a swim never fails to cool you off, but if you’re not spending the day poolside, try something as simple as making a cool wet compress for your neck or forehead or soaking your feet in a basin of cool water. Even if the effects are only temporary, being cool for a little while will give your system a break.
3. Circulate, darling!
You may not have air conditioning, but most people have access to a fan when indoors. Try box fans that fit in your window frames to circulate the air and keep it moving. This won’t literally cool the air, but keeping it moving around your body and creating a breeze effect will help you to feel relief.
4. Close the blinds.
Sometimes the simplest answers really are the best. The Family Handyman reports that approximately 30 percent of unwanted heat comes from your windows. While no one wants to feel like they live in a dark dungeon, utilizing curtains, blinds, shades and other window coverings can lessen the indoor temperature by more than 20 degrees and reduce your electricity bill by up to seven percent. This is especially helpful for west and south-facing windows.
5. Strategize with windows.
We recommend going outside only during the cooler parts of the day, and otherwise staying in the shade. Open your windows at night and early in the morning to let the cool air in, then close them. Trapping cooler air in the house by closing windows during the hotter part of the day will help your home’s insulation do the work better.
Also, let your appliances take a break. Things like the stove, coffeemaker, computer, and even cable box can create a lot of unnecessary heat when on. In extreme situations, it may be worth it to turn machines off when not in use.
6. Avoid caffeine and alcoholic beverages.
While nothing begs for a margarita more than the mercury rising, it’s best to hold off if you’re trying to stay cool. Both caffeine and alcohol act as a diuretic, thereby increasing the likelihood of dehydration.
7. Change the sheets.
Not only does a fresh set of laundered bedding make a room look more appealing, but it may also have the effect of cooling things down. That is if you’re using the right fabric. Textiles like fleece and flannel are optimum for insulation but can wreak havoc on the body’s temperature in the heat. Replace them with breathable materials, particularly cotton, to lessen the temperature. Pair with a buckwheat pillow for an added cool down. Buckwheat hulls naturally have air between them, so they won’t trap your body heat as a conventional pillow does.
8. Create an ice bowl air conditioner.
Fill a cooler or bowl with ice or ice packs and point a standing fan in its direction. The fan will circulate the cold air generated by the cooler/bowl of ice.
9. Freeze your pillow.
For most people, heat really becomes a problem at night when trying to sleep. If you can brave the few minutes of extra burrrrrr, place your pillow into a small bag and leave it in the freezer for several hours before bedtime. Sleep with the cold pillow to stave off the heat.
Related: Air Conditioner Not Working, And It’s Too Hot to Sleep?
10. Eat spicy foods.
Though it may seem counterintuitive, there’s a reason why spicy foods tend to dominate cultures closer to the equator. Eating food with an extra spicy bite induces perspiration, which is your body’s way of cooling down.
Beat the Heat
When you’re tired of do-it-yourself methods of lowering the temperature indoors, it may be time to install an AC unit or have yours repaired. If so, give The Cooling Company a call at (702) 567-0707.