Household & Real Estate

How to Keep Your Home Cool If Your AC Breaks Down

It’s the middle of summer and suddenly your AC stops working. The air in your home quickly becomes stifling hot and you start sweating just sitting on the couch. Your first instinct might be to panic, but try to stay calm. There are things you can do to keep your home relatively cool until you’re able to get AC repair in Tempe. With a few simple tricks and supplies, you can ride out an AC breakdown without melting.

Check Your Thermostat

Before assuming the worst, check to make sure your thermostat hasn’t been bumped up or switched off. Thermostats can sometimes get knocked to a higher temperature setting, turning off the AC. Gently wipe any dust off your thermostat screen and make sure it’s set to the normal temperature you keep your home. If adjusting the thermostat doesn’t help, you’ll have to move on to other cooling methods.

Block Out the Sun

One of the fastest ways your home heats up on a hot day is sunlight streaming in through the windows. The best way to prevent this greenhouse effect is to keep your window coverings closed. On very hot days, you may even want to place blankets or foil on the windows to block even more sunlight. The less direct sun that enters your home, the cooler it will stay. Just try not to block all natural light – some sunlight exposure is good for your health and mood.

Use Fans Strategically

Fans can be a lifesaver when your AC is out. Place box fans or oscillating floor fans in rooms you spend the most time in. For maximum effect, position the fans near open windows so they push the hot air outside. You can also set bowls of ice in front of fans – as the ice melts, the breeze from the fan will pick up the cold moisture. Just be sure to put the bowls on plates, so the water doesn’t spill on the floor.

Take Advantage of the Outdoors

Another way to get some cool air flowing through your home is to take advantage of cooler early morning and late evening temperatures. Open up all your windows and doors during those times to let the refreshing outdoor air inside. Then close up the house as the day heats up to trap the cool air in. If you have a door to a shady patio or covered porch, open it up and set up fans to pull cool air indoors.

Change Up Your Menu

When it’s sweltering inside, you won’t want to spend time cooking or baking, which heats up the kitchen. Take this opportunity to eat cool, refreshing foods that don’t require cooking. Think salads, sandwiches, raw fruits and veggies, cold soups, smoothies and yogurt. Stay hydrated with plenty of water, iced tea or lemonade. Avoid hot coffee or tea, which will just make you feel hotter.

The best way to avoid getting stuck without air conditioning is prevention through proper maintenance. Have an HVAC technician do a tune-up on your AC unit each spring, before the peak cooling season starts. They will check for leaks, clean the coils, inspect the wiring and make sure all systems are good to go. Unfortunately, you can’t always prevent every AC outage. But using fans, shade, and other cooling techniques can help you get through a few days until AC repair in Tempe can take place. With smart preparation and quick action to call a repair company, you can ride out an AC crisis. Before you know it, your home will be blissfully cool once more.