Author Topic: Alternatives to AC?  (Read 4488 times)

QueyWet

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Alternatives to AC?
« on: May 17, 2019, 06:44:26 AM »
I live in a hot country ( not US) and it's not even Summer yet and it's already becoming unbearably hot during the daytime.
Now this wouldn't be a problem if AC wasn't so damn expensive.

TheContinentalOp

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2019, 06:55:20 AM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.

QueyWet

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2019, 07:00:47 AM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.

I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

APowers

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2019, 07:14:21 AM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.

I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

Where do you live, QueyWet?

oldmannickels

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2019, 07:17:48 AM »
I live in a hot country ( not US) and it's not even Summer yet and it's already becoming unbearably hot during the daytime.
Now this wouldn't be a problem if AC wasn't so damn expensive.

Embrace the sweat. Whenever I feel like I'm sweating too much I picture myself as Matthew McConaughey in A Time to Kill sweating through my suit.

QueyWet

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2019, 07:47:08 AM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.

I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

Where do you live, QueyWet?

I rathar not say where I am from specifically.
Suffice to say that it's not the worst but it's not the bes either.
I have always wanted to immigrate to the US but it will probably only be a pipedream.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2019, 07:54:34 AM »
Partially it'll depend on your housing situation. If you have a poorly insulated house and live in a place without a good breeze, you're pretty well in trouble with it. Fans, lots of water, and those cold neck pack things are the best you can do in that situation. Tactics vary on:
-is your climate humid or dry?
-is your home well insulated?
-do you have outdoor space?
-do children, pets, or elderly live with you?

And so on. Just like finances, the answer is... it depends!
But in general:
Make sure the blinds are all closed during the day. If you need to run the AC and you have an ourdoor heat pump, run it in the *morning* when it's cooler (more efficient), and then seal up your house like a tomb. If you're not somewhere intensely humid, like the US south, you can wet down the ground around your house in the evening and allow evaporation cooling to bring the temp down- at the same time, open up all the windows overnight and cool the place off. Fans are your friend. Moving air will always feel cooler than stagnant air.

GuitarStv

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2019, 07:56:44 AM »
Are you in a hot and dry, or hot and humid climate?  It makes a big difference.  Hot and dry, you can stay cool just by misting yourself with water and letting it evaporate.  Do that in a hot and humid climate and you just get wet.

Parizade

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2019, 08:17:43 AM »
Just saw this article, it might have some tips that help you

Six Ways to Keep Cool in Merida

I have found that a headband can make me feel instantly cooler. If it's hot and humid I tie a strip of wicking fabric around my forehead to accelerate evaporation of sweat. In a dry heat you can use a wet bandana for the same effect.

LPG

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2019, 08:43:50 AM »
If the climate is similar to Southern California and hot enough that you need AC, then I assume you mean South-Central California. Extremely hot, extremely dry. If so, you could look into a swamp cooler or evaporative cooler. They evaporate water to cool air and consume far less electricity. They do consume water and make the air more humid as a down side, so you'll need to consider that.

TheContinentalOp

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2019, 08:56:58 AM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.



I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

It's not the heat, it's the humidity!

Rosy

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2019, 09:18:14 AM »
The DIY boards/forums of the prepper communities show several solar projects on how to make your own solar AC.
Google it!:)

I saved a few websites/project ideas to my own Pinterest board along with a few hundred thousand other people who have "survival" - camping or outdoor boards on Pinterest.
I'm not into doom and gloom, but since we live in hot and humid Florida it is definitely of interest to me.


Aunt Petunia

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2019, 09:25:30 AM »
Open all of your windows at night. Run fans facing inward on one side of the house only, so the breeze runs through the house. Close the windows in the early morning when the temperature is coolest and keep them closed all day.

Avoid cooking and other heat producing activities during the hot part of the day.

Live in a neighborhood with lots of shade trees.

Have a house that was built before ac was ubiquitous.

Have your bedroom on the main floor or basement if possible.


BookLoverL

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2019, 12:27:33 PM »
I don't live in a place hot enough to need AC, so I don't know personally. But perhaps you could find out how people kept cool in your area before AC became widespread, and try that?

APowers

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #14 on: May 17, 2019, 01:38:19 PM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.

I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

Where do you live, QueyWet?

I rathar not say where I am from specifically.
Suffice to say that it's not the worst but it's not the bes either.
I have always wanted to immigrate to the US but it will probably only be a pipedream.

I'm not asking for an address, but a country/state/nearby major city would allow is to be much more mindful in our responses. For instance, there are quite a few Aussie folks on here who can give you more helpful advice about Aussie-specific strategies, if you happen to be in Australia. There are Canadian members who may be able to give you a start navigating the healthcare system. And so on. But my US-specific grocery budgeting advice is going to be WAY less helpful if I assume you're in the US when you're not.

yyc-phil

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2019, 01:56:28 PM »

Six Ways to Keep Cool in Merida


Merida and the surrounding areas are the hottest, most humid places I have been. Even in February-March. Middle of summer was unbearable. If I lived there permanently, I would probably become a bum and spend my days in the fetal position. Being born in the middle of North Africa, I am used to heat, but Merida was insane.

Cranky

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2019, 02:36:11 PM »
Are we talking about someplace thatís over 100į every day? How do other people manage?

I grew up in central Florida, back before anything except the movies had a/c. It was hot and sticky, but honestly, everybody was used to it. We had fans, we took cool showers, we ate on the screened porch. My mom always said it was better than snow, and I have to agree.

It doesnít seem like you have much of a support system? Friends and family?

FIREstache

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2019, 03:27:09 PM »
I used to tolerate a lot of heat in the summer without AC, sometimes about 90 degrees inside the house.  I put a fan in the window in my bedroom blowing in at night to make it tolerable to sleep.  At one point several years ago, there was some mold forming on some leather items and on a particle board on some basement shelving, so I started using the AC to keep the house from getting over the mid 80's and to keep the humidity down, and low 80's if I'm home.  No more problems with mold.

I also run fans inside the house during the day and dress in shorts and t-shirt.

HipGnosis

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #18 on: May 18, 2019, 07:23:34 PM »
If you can, open lots of windows in the cool of the morning.
Then block out as much sun as you can.
Use fans.  Multiple.  If you don't like them blowing right on you, have them moving the air around you.  I have one positioned to blow over my bed.  I can raise my hand and feel the breeze.
Cold water has negative thermal mass.
Make / drink ice water.  Lots of ice water and lots of ice.  Or lemonaide, etc...
Cool showers are very cooling.  Esp. when you gradually turn the water as cold as you can stand it.
You can maximize the effect by air drying near a fan (instead of using a towel, but you can sit on a towel).

MilesTeg

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2019, 08:31:43 PM »
The only alternative to AC is DC.

24andfrugal

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #20 on: May 20, 2019, 09:24:13 AM »
My fiance and I used to live in the Southern US; where we lived, the average temperature in August was 88. Our home did not have HVAC, but there were ceiling fans in the kitchen and living room. When we moved in, we each got a pedestal fan to move around the house as needed. It was incredibly hot at times, but we survived.

Prior to living there, we lived in a 1BR "apartment home". It had AC, but we chose not to use it because we didn't want to pay for it. Our apartment faced the woods and was rather dark, so it wasn't bad.

I don't think it matters too much where you live. I grew up in the Northeast US and it got crazy hot, but we had to live with it because the house didn't have AC. As with many things in FIRE, heat/AC is about, to some extent, how much you're willing to live without to achieve your goals (you probably know this, but I'm going to say it anyway :P ). My order of strategy would thus be:

1. Get a few box fans/pedestal fans (bonus points if you can get them secondhand)
2. If that's too hot, get a window unit
3. If that's too hot, use central air, but set the temperature "high"

Good luck!

StockBeard

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #21 on: May 21, 2019, 02:56:56 AM »
The only alternative to AC is DC.
I'm confused, AC already is the alternating one!

Bracken_Joy

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #22 on: May 21, 2019, 07:23:53 AM »
The only alternative to AC is DC.
I'm confused, AC already is the alternating one!

I'm not sure I'd describe AC/DC as Alternative though. More hard rock or rock and roll, I'd think.

Bateaux

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #23 on: May 24, 2019, 05:13:08 AM »
Here in Florida humidity removal is needed.  Best way to do that is with refrigeration.  That takes money.  It's a primary part of the FIRE budget for us.

BillyBob48

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #24 on: May 24, 2019, 03:28:58 PM »
I've lived in SoCal for most of my youth, so I understand hot weather. We lived in a modest, mid-1960's track house with AC but never turned it on, even in the hottest SoCal. Here is a trick I learned:

1. Find a shaded area, preferably outdoors or near a window.
2. Sit very quietly and slow your breathing down, taking long drawn out breaths.
3. Relax your entire body and try to feel the hair on your skin, all around.
4. Pretty soon, you will be able to detect slight breezes that cross your skin - evaporative cooling.
5. When you reach this state, you will not be hot anymore.
6. Good luck.

GuitarStv

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #25 on: May 25, 2019, 01:57:10 PM »
California gets hot, but it's usually dry.  Dry it is perfectly tolerable.  Someone trying to do what you've described in a humid climate will not experience evaporative cooling.  What they'll feel is the sweat building up, not evaporating, and then rolling down their face, back, and the crack of their ass.  When you reach this state you will be kinda miserable.  :P

LifePhaseTwo

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #26 on: May 25, 2019, 08:54:45 PM »
We decided a good solution for us was a portable AC unit - much cheaper than central AC, more effective than fans, and it works like a dream during the hot summer days we get each year when the house is like an oven and it doesnít cool down at night. We picked ours up at Costco.

Khaetra

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #27 on: May 26, 2019, 06:30:42 AM »
California gets hot, but it's usually dry.  Dry it is perfectly tolerable.  Someone trying to do what you've described in a humid climate will not experience evaporative cooling.  What they'll feel is the sweat building up, not evaporating, and then rolling down their face, back, and the crack of their ass.  When you reach this state you will be kinda miserable.  :P

When it gets to 100 degrees and 100% humidity here in Florida that is exactly what it's like and it's damn miserable.  I don't go hog wild with the AC, I keep it around 78-79 during the day and drop it to 75 at night.  Enough to keep it comfortable and keep the mold away.

Leisured

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #28 on: May 26, 2019, 08:13:02 AM »
I live in Australia, and most of the country is dry, so evaporative cooling works well. All evaporative cooling needs is a large fan to blow air cooled by evaporating water throughput the house. AC is relatively cheap today, so you could have both cooling devices, and only use AC when it is too hot for evaporative cooling, or when it is humid.

As a teenager I remember people on farms with a verandah hanging wet towels, so that air flowing through the towels would cool.

In also remember Coolgardie safes, which are perforated steel boxes holding meat, with sacking draped over them. The sacking is set into a water container above the safe, so that water soaks into the sacking and evaporates, cooling the metal meat container.

A variation of this idea is a sacking water bag, hanging in shade. Water in the sack container evaporates through the sacking, cooling the water. Works well. Coolgardie is a hot, dry town in Western Australia.

You might like these links:

https://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real-life/wtf/life-in-marble-bar-the-hottest-town-in-australia-where-40c-is-a-mild-day/news-story/3b68b8cfd612148b7169f19c7d84a8d2

http://www.aussietowns.com.au/town/marble-bar-wa

In the twenties, Marble Bar had a run of 161 days where the maximum tempertaure was at or above 100 degrees F.










Villanelle

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #29 on: May 26, 2019, 09:19:28 AM »
(The OP was left the site, but I think this info can still be useful.)

We have a portable a/c in our bedroom which allows us to keep the rest of the house much warmer.  I have sensory issues that mean I can't sleep without bedding on me, and even just a sheet isn't an option. 

My other "alternative" to a/c is nudity.  Most of the time, I wear very little clothing around the house.  A light, oversized (for airflow) tee and underwear are plenty sufficient. 

Also, wet hair.  In a dryer climate or home, it helps a lot.  Even in humidity, it helps a little. 

A fan is another alternative. 

BTDretire

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #30 on: May 27, 2019, 09:53:19 AM »
Stoicism?

My ex-wife was nuts with the AC. She'd chill our bedroom to 66 in the summer.

 I associate air-conditioning with the worse parts of my marriage, so I never use it. Not in my car, not in my apartment. And I'm on the top floor and the west-side of the building so the place really heats up. I open windows, turn on the fans, drink plenty of water and it's not that bad. (or that's what I tell myself) Been doing this for ten years now.



I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

It's not the heat, it's the humidity!
Absolutely, I live in the Fl. panhandle, I visited Pasadena Ca, (Cal Tech)  24 years ago, the physical comfort
of the reduced humidity is something that has stuck with me.

btw, I saw Stephen Hawking in the cafeteria at Cal Tech. He was there giving a talk on string theory,
I wasn't :-)

FIREstache

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #31 on: May 27, 2019, 10:43:17 AM »

I like the feel of high humidity when I'm out biking, running, or walking on a summer afternoon or evening.  I don't the sweating.

I don't like it around home or when I'm working on home projects and dripping sweat.

But all things considered, temperature is my biggest concern for personal comfort, not humidity.

nereo

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #32 on: May 27, 2019, 12:51:19 PM »

I see.
But according to your location you live near Philadelphia which is not a hot area.
I live in an area with the same temperature in the summer as southern California.

Just couldn't let this go - 'Southern California' is a big area with lots of variance between temperatures.  Philly is considerably hotter in the summer than either Los Angeles or San Diego (two of the most populous areas of SoCal), but not as hot as, say, Bakersfield.  But Philly has way more humidity and a higher average 'heat-index' than Bakersfield.

As others have said, if you are in a hot but dry climate evaporative cooling works considerably well.  With humidity... not so much.

Pay attention to the local architecture from buildings pre-AC; that gives you an idea of how they kept buildings cool.  As exmaples, in the US South (high humidity, high heat) wrap-around verandas help shade the interior, and windows are aligned to allow for a flow-through breeze.  In California, Mission style is common: thick white stucco walls that reflect sunlight, etc.

FINate

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #33 on: May 27, 2019, 04:10:04 PM »
As others have mentioned, details about your specific climate matter. A dry climate often has large daily temperature range, though not always - Phoenix/the low desert seems to be hot all the time in the summer. 

If things cool off overnight then you have lots of options. Open windows overnight. Or install a whole house fan and run it once it cools off overnight. Then close doors and windows in the morning to trap in the cooler air. Shut curtains/blinds to help with this.

Even if you don't cool off overnight, there may be ways to reduce your cooling bill. For very little money you can DIY install window film to reject ~70% of solar heat which can make a big difference if you have windows that get midday or mid afternoon sun. Get more insulation blow into your attic/crawlspace. If you have an attached garage, you may be able to DIY install foam insulation on the garage door if it gets direct sun.


Indexer

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #34 on: May 27, 2019, 04:32:15 PM »
I live in the south eastern US. It's already over 90 outside and humid. It's supposed to hit 98 by the end of the week.
I know people who moved here from Phoenix who feel a humid 95 feels much hotter than a dry 110.

Opening my windows at night? Is a sauna a good place to sleep?  Just kidding. I do open my windows at night in the spring and fall and often even in winter. By this time of year I am sweating taking my dog for walks at 11 pm so the night temperatures are often still to hot and humid. I have slept in such conditions before, but I'm not doing it every night to save less than $30 on my electric bill.


My solution: Go up to the mountains as much as possible. It's normally 20 degrees cooler up there and when I used to live up there I didn't have AC and I was fine. Not enough high paying jobs up there right now though so that is my post-FIRE plan.

ysette9

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #35 on: May 27, 2019, 09:44:01 PM »
Reading this thread makes me so incredibly grateful i live where I do. For the love of all that is holy, I cannot bear hot weather, triply so if humid. No amount of money saved is worth suffering through that for me. If I were the OP Iíd move. There a ton of things Iíd give up in life before giving up the ability to be comfortable, to be outside, and to do the activities I like.

Good luck to all of you. I wish you strength and stoicism I you canít escape your lot.

MinorMiner

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #36 on: May 30, 2019, 09:43:41 AM »
Long time lurker here... I hate dealing with the heat, and hate it even more when trying to sleep. We have no AC. Registered just to pass this gem along:

I sleep with a frozen 2 liter in a winter sock. I know it sounds crazy, but it works amazingly well at helping me regulate my body temperature. I place it on my side that is not facing my wife so there is a warm side and a cold side of the bed. The sock does 2 things: Prevents condensation and prevents it from being too cold on my skin (You can choose sock thickness based on how warm it is too). If I still wake up and am too warm I just place it between my legs against both femoral arteries. This can take me from sweating to freezing in just a few minutes. I figure the nightly cost of this is roughly $0.04.

The wife has dubbed this "Icee" and will commonly ask me right before bed "MinorMiner did you remember your icee?"




Firehazard

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #37 on: May 30, 2019, 06:53:09 PM »
Long time lurker here... I hate dealing with the heat, and hate it even more when trying to sleep. We have no AC. Registered just to pass this gem along:

I sleep with a frozen 2 liter in a winter sock. I know it sounds crazy, but it works amazingly well at helping me regulate my body temperature. I place it on my side that is not facing my wife so there is a warm side and a cold side of the bed. The sock does 2 things: Prevents condensation and prevents it from being too cold on my skin (You can choose sock thickness based on how warm it is too). If I still wake up and am too warm I just place it between my legs against both femoral arteries. This can take me from sweating to freezing in just a few minutes. I figure the nightly cost of this is roughly $0.04.

The wife has dubbed this "Icee" and will commonly ask me right before bed "MinorMiner did you remember your icee?"

Now this is a creative solution.  Does the sock get wet overnight?

katsiki

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #38 on: May 30, 2019, 07:02:23 PM »
I live in the south eastern US. It's already over 90 outside and humid. It's supposed to hit 98 by the end of the week.
I know people who moved here from Phoenix who feel a humid 95 feels much hotter than a dry 110.

I feel your pain!  Hi from Louisiana.  It is a hot sticky mess already and has been for at least a couple of weeks.

August will be terrible.  :)

dodojojo

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #39 on: June 02, 2019, 07:39:08 PM »
It surprises me that a lot of people sleep with a blanket or some kind of cover in the summer.  Seems like a no-brainer to lose the cover and you don't have to turn on the AC overnight.  A friend and I talked about this today--he said he liked the comfort of being covered.  I set the overnight AC temp to 80 and most nights, the AC doesn't kick in until the morning.

FIREstache

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #40 on: June 02, 2019, 07:44:08 PM »
It surprises me that a lot of people sleep with a blanket or some kind of cover in the summer.  Seems like a no-brainer to lose the cover and you don't have to turn on the AC overnight.  A friend and I talked about this today--he said he liked the comfort of being covered.  I set the overnight AC temp to 80 and most nights, the AC doesn't kick in until the morning.

I don't use a sheet or blanket on a hot summer night.  I even have a fan blowing on me.  But I still have to keep the AC on at night on most summer nights, or the temperature goes up, so I keep the AC on to keep the temp closer to the 78 to 80 range.  Also, I made the mistake of using a fan in the window late at night in the past trying to save on AC usage, and that caused some mold due to humidity.  The small cost of running the AC at night is well worth it.

ctuser1

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #41 on: June 02, 2019, 07:58:43 PM »
I live in a hot country ( not US) and it's not even Summer yet and it's already becoming unbearably hot during the daytime.
Now this wouldn't be a problem if AC wasn't so damn expensive.

From the description, it seems this is some tropical area south of US.

If so, most likely the house constructions are likely very different:
1. They use cinder block, reinforced concrete, brick etc for framinng, and not Wood.
2. They are NOT build to keep heat in. Rather, they allow air to come in and out.
3. Humidity/Mold is not a problem because of construction, AND also the airflow through the house.

I've lived in houses like this in the past, that too without any A/C and temperature routinely reaching 115F. Sometimes the temperature would only be 100F, with 100% humidity. The later is much worse!!

How do you cope?

1. Embrace the sweat! It is there to protect you from heat-stroke, which is much worse!!
2. Once you got #1, drink a lot of water to compensate for the water loss from the sweat.
3. Get a evaporative "water cooler". It works even when it is very humid.
4. Give your body some time to adjust.


Just Joe

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #42 on: June 13, 2019, 08:22:28 AM »
Open all of your windows at night. Run fans facing inward on one side of the house only, so the breeze runs through the house. Close the windows in the early morning when the temperature is coolest and keep them closed all day.

Avoid cooking and other heat producing activities during the hot part of the day.

Live in a neighborhood with lots of shade trees.

Have a house that was built before ac was ubiquitous.

Have your bedroom on the main floor or basement if possible.

High ceilings!

I'll second window fans. We have a pair of these in bedroom windows. We open only the windows in the family room. The air comes through the family room and exits the bedroom windows while we are awake.

Once we go to bed we reverse the flow of the fans and the air enters the bedrooms and exits the family room windows. Side benefit: the house smells so fresh.

These window fans (in case you haven't seen them before) are rectangular and are designed to have the window closed on them to loosely seal the window and allow the air to only go through the fan. Some come with thermostats so they can be set to cycle based on interior temps. Our fan thermostats never worked b/c there wasn't enough temp change as found in the desert perhaps. The air flow provided the comfort.

Daytime comfort: shady screened in porch. Alternative: a portable pop-up canopy with screened walls plus a portable fan.

I live in a hot and humid place. Being comfortable can be a dozen little strategies.

Clothing: look for something thin. I'm wearing a athletics type polo shirt that is prob mostly synthetic material. Very breezy. Some of my cotton t-shirts are thinner than others and thus cooler.Take up wearing women's clothing for the summer. I'm guessing a women's skirt made of light fabric might beat men's shorts for making the most of a breeze. ;)
Drink COLD ice water frequently.
Don't sit on upholstered furniture. Our family room furniture is very comfortable but very warm (foam padding and upholstery). Sit on the floor, wicker furniture, camp chairs, etc.
Heat sources: Summer kitchens. People I've known in hot places that cooked alot (esp. simmering) did so on a second stove/range on an outside porch to keep the heat out of the house.
Heat sources: stereos, televisions, and incandescent light bulbs. Turn them off or minimize their use. LED bulbs win here. So do laptops vs televisions. Desktop computers make alot of heat even at idle.
Sleeping: Siesta. Take one. Be active in the cool early and late hours of the day. Sleep outside on a screened in porch.
Entertainment: Go see a movie during the hottest part of the day. Reserve your shopping for the hottest part of the day. Visit the library. All these places are air conditioned.
Wear a hat. A straw hat can be cooler than others. A wet fabric hat can be cooling too.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2019, 08:44:07 AM by Just Joe »

GuitarStv

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #43 on: June 13, 2019, 08:24:18 AM »
Agreed on high ceilings.  They make a room surprisingly cooler in the summer - even with humidity.

sparkytheop

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Re: Alternatives to AC?
« Reply #44 on: June 13, 2019, 03:10:11 PM »
Long time lurker here... I hate dealing with the heat, and hate it even more when trying to sleep. We have no AC. Registered just to pass this gem along:

I sleep with a frozen 2 liter in a winter sock. I know it sounds crazy, but it works amazingly well at helping me regulate my body temperature. I place it on my side that is not facing my wife so there is a warm side and a cold side of the bed. The sock does 2 things: Prevents condensation and prevents it from being too cold on my skin (You can choose sock thickness based on how warm it is too). If I still wake up and am too warm I just place it between my legs against both femoral arteries. This can take me from sweating to freezing in just a few minutes. I figure the nightly cost of this is roughly $0.04.

The wife has dubbed this "Icee" and will commonly ask me right before bed "MinorMiner did you remember your icee?"

I've done similar...

At home I have central air, but in areas/times I don't:

I've used icepacks that are similar to the beaded neck/headband things.  One area I work involves sitting in a very small concrete and window building, with inefficient AC.  I'll bring the icepack (about 12"x12") and place it behind my back, on my stomach, or on my lap/between my legs to help cool me down.

When car camping in a hot climate (where I didn't feel comfortable having my windows rolled down-- as a single female I didn't want it obvious I was alone in my car) I would soak a travel towel in water and lay it over me (this was really great for a nap on the lawn at a rest stop during the day), and also have a frozen container of water, like a 2 quart jug. 

When my son was young and I drove a car without AC, I would give him a wet washcloth to play with, and wipe him down with more water during any stops.

As a kid with a paper route, I would soak my socks and shoes (cheap slip-on cloth shoes with regular soles), and run my hair under the hose before heading out.  Sometimes I'd have to use the restroom at a gas station halfway through to soak everything again. 

Not caring what you look like to stay cool (or warm) helps a lot!