There are three simple ways to keep your home cooler in the summer without spending a fortune on air conditioning.  No modern science here.  These are things we know – but might have forgotten.

  • Shade the windows: Indoor blinds are nowhere near as efficient at keeping the heat out as using an external awning or shutters.  Once the heat gets through the window, it will stay in the house.  You need only target the windows facing the sun.
  • Insulate the attic: …but not during a heat wave!  Wait for a few cooler days when the attic is cool, and start the job in the early morning.  This is a simple DIY project.  Bonus: winter heating costs will also go down.
  • Ventilate the attic: The air in your attic heats up, and up, and up.  A thermostatically controlled fan can expel this heat much faster than natural attic ventilation can.  In my first home, which had no air conditioning, I added an attic fan.  As a result, the temperature dropped by 5°C.  (Buy a quiet one!)