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Eco-Friendly Ways to Keep Your Apartment Cool this Summer

Summer temperatures can feel oppressive at times, making it difficult to sleep or causing you to feel lethargic. Whether it’s to stay healthy or for simple comfort reasons, you want to keep your apartment cool during the sweltering season.

However, being eco-friendly while avoiding overheating may not seem like an easy task. Fortunately, cooling your apartment can be an easy and environmentally conscious process with these tips:

Decorate With Indoor Plants

Certain indoor plants help keep the air around them cool. Plants rely on photosynthesis in order to survive, a process in which they consume water and sunlight to create their own food. This process also causes plants to take in energy, in this case, heat.

Have you ever noticed that the shade of a tree is far cooler than the shade of a building? Plants need to absorb energy to function, so they take heat (coming from sunlight) from the air. Buildings only reflect it.

Shade East- and West-Facing Windows

The sun rises in the east and sets in the west, so the windows facing those directions get a lot of direct sunlight. As you know, the sun creates heat, which is unpleasant in an already toasty apartment.

Keep the east- and west-facing windows in your apartment shaded during the day to prevent the hot direct sunlight from entering the building. Blackout curtains will prevent heat from entering the building the best, but if you still want some natural light during the day, you may want to hang thinner material.

Keep Your Apartment Closed

You might be tempted to open the doors and windows to your apartment during the day to let in a breeze, but you should reconsider. The air outside is hot, so why would you want it blowing around in your apartment?

Seal off your home during the day to prevent humidity and heat from entering. However, you should only do this if you take other eco-friendly cooling measures, such as closing the curtains. You can open the windows and shades at night to let the evening (sun-free) air clear out your apartment.

Run Appliances at Night

The summer season creates enough heat as it is, and running appliances only adds more heat to the air. Your stove, oven and dishwasher, for example, create heat when in use. Avoid using these during the day, especially if you keep your windows closed, to avoid increasing indoor temperatures. Leave cooking, dishes and laundry for after sundown—you can make cold lunches, like sandwiches, during the day instead.

Source:  Forbes