So I don’t know about you, but where I am from, we’re hitting record highs in the temperature department (and that’s without the massive humidex attached!) But putting on the air conditioning doesn’t have to be the only answer.

Here are our top tips for staying cool indoors when the weather gets a little too warm. *Other than of course, jumping in the pool).

Keep the windows and door closed

So it’s cool inside (thanks to the AC) and way too hot outside, but what happens when you open the door to step out for a few moments? Instant indoor heatwave. Heat is attracted to cold and will continue that way until it is the same temperature. Your best bet? Keep those doors and windows closed.

Move on down

As you probably know, hot air rises. That means, the upstairs of your house is going to be warmer than the bottom floor or basement. When you put on the AC, warm air still leaks through cracks, pipes and gaps. The result? It gets a heck of a lot warmer upstairs, because the air move up… and fast.

Do some air sealing and insulation

In order to be sure that the barrier is beaten, leaving the warm air out of the house, get yourself some air sealing and insulation. Insulation prevents heat leaking through the walls and ceilings, and air sealing prevents heat coming through air movement. By improving insulation and air sealing, it will keep you a lot cooler. Start at the top by sealing the ceiling under the attic, then move toward the garage as the next step.

If you have central air conditioning, air can still leak through a network of supply and return ducts, through the fittings, seams and joints in the ductwork. This air ends up in the basement, walls,  floors and other wasted places.

Get a shady exterior

Use large, shady trees on the outside, along with awnings to keep the heat from reaching the house. You can also use window coverings inside. Shading windows keeps your house cool and energy costs low.

Customize the thermostat

By upgrading to a programmable thermostat, you can program automatic temperature settings to suit your needs. Even better, you don’t have to think about it when you leave for work in the morning, or if you’re going away for a few days. You can also take advantage of “fan only” option, which uses some of the cool basement air and circulates it within the house.

Maintain your AC

Keep your  filters clean (eco-friendly filters are available), which can improve the system’s efficiency by up to 15 percent. Replace them as needed, checking every three months or so.

Use those ceiling fans

Fans can make the inside air more comfortable to keep the thermostat at a higher temperature if you use them along with the AC. Ceiling fans use much less energy than the AC, and can make you feel up to 4 degrees cooler.

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