Author Topic: alternative to AC  (Read 8041 times)

MrSal

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alternative to AC
« on: May 30, 2016, 11:42:28 AM »
I live in Central PA and was looking for an alternative to AC.

I live in a 1200 sq ft ranch house. My idea came from the Whole-house fan idea to use during the night and replace indoor air with cooler air from outside and then that air last for most of the following day.

Right now, it has been impossible to achieve that because after the 1st day was done we were only able to start the day at around 75 F int he morning and then it slowly starts creeping up.

Now, a whole fan is more work and money that what i would like to put in right now so I was at Lowes and came across this:

http://www.lowes.com/pd_667618-63981-FW23-8HS_1z11on0Z1z0yy9c__?productId=1000024603&pl=1

Would opening 2 opposite windows at night each one with this fan ... and setting one to indoor blowing and the other to outside blowing would work?

The power rating is 1200 CFM. The price seems fairly cheap and no need to make a whole in the ceiling for the wholehouse fan ...

I can get usualy 40% discount at lowes.

Would this work in any form? Bringing the mid 60s air from outside into the house and then first thing in the morning just shut the windows.

Calculating my house cubic ft ... its around 10 000 cubic ft not counting attic and basement not sure if this type of calculation can be this straight forward but it seems 1200 CFM would be more than enough?
« Last Edit: May 30, 2016, 11:44:36 AM by MrSal »

ender

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2016, 11:43:43 AM »
Why did you rule out a whole house fan?

My parents have one of these and it is great.

GuitarStv

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2016, 11:53:54 AM »
As long as it cools off in the evening and the humidity doesn't get too high, I don't see any reason why your plan wouldn't work.

We leave upstairs windows open all night when the humidity isn't very high, and turn on the furnace vent fan.  As long as you have windows on either side of the house open, there's usually enough of a cross-breeze that the house will cool off.  Draw all the blinds in the morning after closing the windows (if you have cellular shades or thick curtains this can also help to trap the cool air in your house).  Turn off the furnace fan in the morning and your basement will keep a lot of the cool air trapped until you need it again just before bed.  Simply having a ceiling fan above your bedroom makes sleeping in very warm temperatures much more comfortable too.

This strategy doesn't work well when it doesn't cool off at night (too miserable to sleep) and when humidity is in the 80%+ range (a sticky, humid house is bad for mold and uncomfortable to try and live in).

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2016, 12:14:40 PM »
As long as it cools off in the evening and the humidity doesn't get too high, I don't see any reason why your plan wouldn't work.

We leave upstairs windows open all night when the humidity isn't very high, and turn on the furnace vent fan.  As long as you have windows on either side of the house open, there's usually enough of a cross-breeze that the house will cool off.  Draw all the blinds in the morning after closing the windows (if you have cellular shades or thick curtains this can also help to trap the cool air in your house).  Turn off the furnace fan in the morning and your basement will keep a lot of the cool air trapped until you need it again just before bed.  Simply having a ceiling fan above your bedroom makes sleeping in very warm temperatures much more comfortable too.

This strategy doesn't work well when it doesn't cool off at night (too miserable to sleep) and when humidity is in the 80%+ range (a sticky, humid house is bad for mold and uncomfortable to try and live in).

it does get humid here at times but nothing related to those amounts. even on stellar nights where its 75F and a bit muggy during the night around 3 am or 5 am the temperature drops low enough.

For example last night low temp was 63F and low humidity was at 45%it would have been great to start today the house at 65 F for example and then let it creep up slowly during the day postponing the need for AC.

Instead our house woke up to 78F even when i left all windows opened during the night (its been very hot here during the day around mid 90s for the past few days so the house hasnt been able to catch up on its own)

Le Poisson

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2016, 12:40:24 PM »
We pretty much live in the basement once it gets hot enough to need AC.

Its a good 10C cooler down there.

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2016, 01:11:58 PM »
our basement is not finished yet maybe next year or so...

bacchi

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2016, 01:19:28 PM »
I have one of those dual window fans and I'm a big fan. It's already in the closet but it works great from Nov-April (yeah, we're in the south).

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2016, 03:02:08 PM »
i guess ill try and buy 2 of these and set one of them for intake and the other for exhaust ... will come back with results :) ... if it doe3snt work i can always return it.

GuitarStv

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2016, 03:51:37 PM »
i guess ill try and buy 2 of these and set one of them for intake and the other for exhaust ... will come back with results :) ... if it doe3snt work i can always return it.

It might also be worth adding some extra insulation to your attic.  Attics tend to really superheat in the summer if you have dark shingles, and if you don't have much insulation they'll radiate that heat down into the house for hours after the sun has gone down.  Insulation is can also be had pretty cheap, and helps a surprising amount in the winter too.

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2016, 04:00:19 PM »
Yup that's definitely in my plans... However the temperatures have been high and last thing I want is to go to the attic during a 90's day!!

I have blown in cellulose under my radar at lowes... Can get it for 6$ power bag to bring the r value of my attic into r-60

mousebandit

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2016, 04:11:13 PM »
Just for my own education on the matter, why wouldn't your house cool off the night you left all the windows open and it was in the 60s outside?  Just too much retained heat from the previous day?  Not enough venting up high to let the trapped hot air escape? 

I love the idea of ditching A/C - my husband and I were just talking about it last weekend.  (And today he installed the window air conditioners, at my request, LOL!)

THANKS!
MouseBandit

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #11 on: May 30, 2016, 04:23:31 PM »
Just for my own education on the matter, why wouldn't your house cool off the night you left all the windows open and it was in the 60s outside?  Just too much retained heat from the previous day?  Not enough venting up high to let the trapped hot air escape? 

I love the idea of ditching A/C - my husband and I were just talking about it last weekend.  (And today he installed the window air conditioners, at my request, LOL!)

THANKS!
MouseBandit

Yup pretty much that's it... Not enough time between midnight  to 8am to cool off enough...

During the first few days if was fine because the house was able to go down into 69 or so... But since for the past 10 days temperatures have been in high 80-90s there isn't much buffer...

We could live without ac if the house started the morning with the night temperatures in the 60s and slowly rise the temp up during the day... Maybe even enough to reach the evening and repeat the process again...

I'm from Europe and I cant understand why people in the US don't build houses or of brick and mortar... Much better insulation...

In Portugal we have heat waves of 100+ temperatures and never in my life my house gets above 75 inside... And we don't even have ac there... And to reach 75-76 inside that's by the end of a 10 day heat wave where the mass of the building has accumulated all the heat in the meantime.

Goldielocks

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2016, 10:49:23 PM »
our basement is not finished yet maybe next year or so...
Hah,  as a kid, we would sleep in the unfinished basement in the summer (whole family).  It was HOT! for about 6 weeks a year, so my parents put off getting AC, and we slept on cots.  Some people in our area would sleep on the back porch, too.

Also, no using the oven in the summer, if you can at all help it.

Look for solar chimney-- there are some window mount DIY versions.  I find a whole house fan is great, but costs $50 per month in electricity to run 24 hr/day.   Less if just a night, though.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #13 on: May 31, 2016, 03:57:54 AM »
We do have brick and mortar houses here, they're just old, like mine.

It has been damn hot in Pennsylvania lately, but we've kept the AC off even though we're home during the day. I think you need to be taking advantage of the layers of your house. Open you basement and main floor windows, then consider opening your attic stairs if you have a well-vented attic. You'll create a chimney effect.

You have ceiling fans, right? If not, as long as you have ceiling lights adding the fan box and fan will be very easy for a DIY machine like you. They make a huge difference to comfort.

Drifterrider

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #14 on: May 31, 2016, 04:41:13 AM »
I live in Central PA and was looking for an alternative to AC.

Is there a reason you don't want an A/C?


alsoknownasDean

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #15 on: May 31, 2016, 04:43:02 AM »
Another option is to work out good ways to add extra shade to your place.

That might be planting deciduous trees nearby, or adding an awning (either retractable or a fixed one) to your windows, or using shade sails.

Stuff like this maybe:

https://au.pinterest.com/pin/151785449917700457/

http://www.efficientwindowcoverings.org/understanding-window-coverings/retractable-awning

Ceiling fans are pretty awesome too.

green daisy

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #16 on: May 31, 2016, 08:59:50 AM »
For a whole house fan, how many windows would you have to open?  I'd be interested, except we live in a ranch and I'm too worried about burglars and creepers to leave windows open at night.  We have a few very small windows that I am comfortable leaving open, and I am ok with our bedroom window being open, but not the kids' rooms and not the main areas of the house except the few tiny windows. 

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #17 on: May 31, 2016, 11:11:40 AM »
our basement is not finished yet maybe next year or so...
Hah,  as a kid, we would sleep in the unfinished basement in the summer (whole family).  It was HOT! for about 6 weeks a year, so my parents put off getting AC, and we slept on cots.  Some people in our area would sleep on the back porch, too.

Also, no using the oven in the summer, if you can at all help it.

Look for solar chimney-- there are some window mount DIY versions.  I find a whole house fan is great, but costs $50 per month in electricity to run 24 hr/day.   Less if just a night, though.

how on earth would a whole house fan cost that much.. they are around 200 Watt hour ! even at 24/7 that would imply a total usage of 144 Kwh which at todays prices would be about 14 dollars

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #18 on: May 31, 2016, 11:17:17 AM »
We do have brick and mortar houses here, they're just old, like mine.

It has been damn hot in Pennsylvania lately, but we've kept the AC off even though we're home during the day. I think you need to be taking advantage of the layers of your house. Open you basement and main floor windows, then consider opening your attic stairs if you have a well-vented attic. You'll create a chimney effect.

You have ceiling fans, right? If not, as long as you have ceiling lights adding the fan box and fan will be very easy for a DIY machine like you. They make a huge difference to comfort.

we have been able to put off the AC for the most part ... other than the other day where the windows were left open during the morning and the house was at 86 F and then we need to be inside and used AC all day which the AC was only able to bring it down to 79.

Would that chimney effect work? ...

Yesterday was pretty hot and the attick was hot too... once it started storming and temperatures were down to 60's what i did was turn on the attic ventilator fan and open the stairwell door up to the attic and it seemed to move some air up... it sure decrease the temp in the house about 3 degrees by bringing outside air into the house... but once attick was at lower than 110 F it stopped.

I tried changing the thermostat for the attic fan for lower temps - i wanted to try and see if attic fan would be enough by opening stairwell case - but couldnt turn it back on somehow.

Yes we do have ceiling fans in bedrooms only. Might install one in the living room since we spend most time there.

Also in my research i found the Airking window whole house fan ... might be an option too!

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #19 on: May 31, 2016, 11:18:47 AM »
For a whole house fan, how many windows would you have to open?  I'd be interested, except we live in a ranch and I'm too worried about burglars and creepers to leave windows open at night.  We have a few very small windows that I am comfortable leaving open, and I am ok with our bedroom window being open, but not the kids' rooms and not the main areas of the house except the few tiny windows.

usuallly the rooms you want to bring new air in. do your windows have the locked feature where they are open a little bit but cant be slide all the way up?

neo von retorch

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #20 on: May 31, 2016, 12:24:01 PM »
We also live in Central/SouthEast PA. We do have a whole house fan, and it was pretty good last week. But then this weekend, we had our skylight replaced. One - that hole in the roof for six hours on Saturday really heat up the home. Second - humidity lately has been rough! We have window units in the master bedroom and living room. For now, we're using those, but if it's drier, I'd like to run the house fan overnight more often and cool the whole house.

One major downside we've had is that we hear foxes and raccoons; a few nights ago, two animals were savagely fighting at 2AM. Sleep wasn't an option. In those cases, our window AC is vastly preferable! (But there are many places where you're not quite so immersed in the wildlife.)

Villanelle

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #21 on: May 31, 2016, 12:35:25 PM »
For a whole house fan, how many windows would you have to open?  I'd be interested, except we live in a ranch and I'm too worried about burglars and creepers to leave windows open at night.  We have a few very small windows that I am comfortable leaving open, and I am ok with our bedroom window being open, but not the kids' rooms and not the main areas of the house except the few tiny windows.

usuallly the rooms you want to bring new air in. do your windows have the locked feature where they are open a little bit but cant be slide all the way up?

Or just cut a sturdy dowel or other piece of wood and wedge it in the window so that it only opens 4-5 inches.  When I lived in a house that had the bedroom on the ground floor, open to a public green space (so all someone would have to do is traipse through some ivy and scale the rail of my balcony, this is what I did.  Easy. 

green daisy

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #22 on: May 31, 2016, 09:09:57 PM »
For a whole house fan, how many windows would you have to open?  I'd be interested, except we live in a ranch and I'm too worried about burglars and creepers to leave windows open at night.  We have a few very small windows that I am comfortable leaving open, and I am ok with our bedroom window being open, but not the kids' rooms and not the main areas of the house except the few tiny windows.

usuallly the rooms you want to bring new air in. do your windows have the locked feature where they are open a little bit but cant be slide all the way up?

We have casement windows.  I've researched locks, but anything I read said they would be too flimsy to keep a criminal out. 

Radagast

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #23 on: May 31, 2016, 09:59:41 PM »
I have been doing something similar for the past two years (admittedly in the cool, high, dry, intermountain west).

A few tips:
-Yes a fan is necessary, just opening windows does not suffice
-I use a cheap $20 box fan from the nearest grocery store which is the exact height of my window
-Only one fan is necessary, 1in+1out can actually make things worse (I learned from computer ventilation)
-I place the fan blowing out at the farthest point from where we sleep to cut down noise
-I then slightly open one or more windows in every room except that with the fan
-You can get creative with dowels, strings, bottles, cans, and dogs if you are afraid of burglars, other methods are available too
-Open all closets and even cupboards and drawers! These trap hot air all night, and heat builds up in these places over a few weeks
-instead, open all interior doors and drawers at night and then close them in the morning to trap pockets of cool air throughout the house
-I actually have two box fans now, on the very hottest nights I will place them blowing out from two windows in different rooms at higher speeds.


« Last Edit: May 31, 2016, 10:18:36 PM by Radagast »

Reynolds531

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #24 on: May 31, 2016, 10:34:09 PM »
I thought about removing the furnace filter cabinet door, ad switching on the furnace fan to pull cold air from the basement floor to the registers. I thought it should bypass the returns if the filter door is open.

Has anyone tried this?

GuitarStv

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #25 on: June 01, 2016, 07:46:32 AM »
I thought about removing the furnace filter cabinet door, ad switching on the furnace fan to pull cold air from the basement floor to the registers. I thought it should bypass the returns if the filter door is open.

Has anyone tried this?

I open all the registers on the top floor, half open the ones on the main floor, close all of the registers in the basement and open the basement cool air return during the summer.  Then when running the furnace fan in the evening it pulls cool air from the basement up to the higher floors.  It seems to be more efficient when running A/C too.  I do the opposite in the winter (close registers on top, half open on main floor, open in basement / close cold air return in basement), pump all the hot air into the basement and let it rise through the house.

This works well for us to keep temperatures even between the floors.

HipGnosis

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #26 on: June 01, 2016, 08:06:16 AM »
You probably should put reflective solar film on your east and south windows to reduce the solar gain.
And possibly thermal curtains.
Awnings if you don't have any shade.

tipster350

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #27 on: June 01, 2016, 09:06:33 AM »
The humidity is horrible in SE PA. I can't/don't want to live without air conditioning. Well worth the money and it doesn't cost that much to run a newer window unit. When I lived in the west and the air was drier, even the worst hot day gave way to a beautiful cool and dry evening. A small fan placed near a window after the sun went down would make the house very comfortable. That is very much not the case in PA.

neo von retorch

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #28 on: June 01, 2016, 01:43:49 PM »
Hello tipster350, fellow SE PA resident!

Last night, we used windows and the house fan, and it was peachy! But humidity... really puts a damper on it.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #29 on: June 01, 2016, 02:04:04 PM »
I really don't think it's been that bad. I guess my house is very well-designed for comfort. Thanks, strangers from before World War I.

Beaker

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #30 on: June 01, 2016, 04:12:52 PM »
I haven't had A/C in 10 years or so. @Radagast had some good tips.

A few more:
- Ideally you want to close windows when the outside temp rises up to the inside temp in the morning, and open windows when the outside temp falls to the inside temp.
- Get shades on every window, and use them.
- Turn off everything you possibly can. Anything consuming electricity is also a little space heater. Many consumer electronics and things with power bricks will generate heat even when turned off - put them on switches or switchable power strips.
- Clothes washer/dryer are obviously terrible as well - run them only in evenings and vent the heat as best you can.
- Don't cook inside during hot parts of the day. Grill out, or cook when it's cool enough to have windows open and then run fans constantly.

Even if you end up using A/C, it'll save lots of electricity if the inside temps start out lower and you minimize the amount of heat production inside the house.

MrSal

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #31 on: June 01, 2016, 04:59:56 PM »
I haven't had A/C in 10 years or so. @Radagast had some good tips.

A few more:
- Ideally you want to close windows when the outside temp rises up to the inside temp in the morning, and open windows when the outside temp falls to the inside temp.
- Get shades on every window, and use them.
- Turn off everything you possibly can. Anything consuming electricity is also a little space heater. Many consumer electronics and things with power bricks will generate heat even when turned off - put them on switches or switchable power strips.
- Clothes washer/dryer are obviously terrible as well - run them only in evenings and vent the heat as best you can.
- Don't cook inside during hot parts of the day. Grill out, or cook when it's cool enough to have windows open and then run fans constantly.

Even if you end up using A/C, it'll save lots of electricity if the inside temps start out lower and you minimize the amount of heat production inside the house.

thats why im looking at a whole house fan... to making the morning starting temp much lower than it is right now. For example today my house started at 73 F and is currently at 79 F where the AC has kicked in a few times already.

If possible I want the inside temp to start much lower :)

tonysemail

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #32 on: June 01, 2016, 05:21:37 PM »
You probably should put reflective solar film on your east and south windows to reduce the solar gain.

this works really well and is not very expensive.
Try it on one window and see the difference yourself.

Radagast

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #33 on: June 01, 2016, 09:54:48 PM »
I haven't had A/C in 10 years or so. @Radagast had some good tips.
- Ideally you want to close windows when the outside temp rises up to the inside temp in the morning, and open windows when the outside temp falls to the inside temp.
Ah yes I forgot this very important tip. Opening and closing the windows at the times of equal temperature. Sometimes I jump the gun in the evening though because moving outside air feels more refreshing than stagnant indoor air, even if outside is still warmer by the numbers.

I haven't used AC in two years because I have owned my house for only two years. Growing up, my parents also never owned an AC, and my Dad had a grand routine of opening and closing various windows and shades to maximize thermal efficiency throughout the year.

Goldielocks

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #34 on: June 01, 2016, 11:47:29 PM »
our basement is not finished yet maybe next year or so...
Hah,  as a kid, we would sleep in the unfinished basement in the summer (whole family).  It was HOT! for about 6 weeks a year, so my parents put off getting AC, and we slept on cots.  Some people in our area would sleep on the back porch, too.

Also, no using the oven in the summer, if you can at all help it.

Look for solar chimney-- there are some window mount DIY versions.  I find a whole house fan is great, but costs $50 per month in electricity to run 24 hr/day.   Less if just a night, though.

how on earth would a whole house fan cost that much.. they are around 200 Watt hour ! even at 24/7 that would imply a total usage of 144 Kwh which at todays prices would be about 14 dollars

Ours was a whole house fan, with HRV for winter months, ducted to heating ventilation.  Lots of resistance to moving air.  I am certain the wattage was a whole lot more.

redbird

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #35 on: June 01, 2016, 11:49:18 PM »
This thread has been an interesting read.

I personally could never do these options though. Husband and I are too much of tech geeks with a lot of electronic toys AND we live in the south. Spring and fall are OK to go without AC, and we do, but summer is a no-go. PCs especially REALLY don't like being in rooms 80 degrees F or hotter, and it can be harder to keep them from overheating if you do. Too much humidity also isn't really great for electronics.

mwulff

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #36 on: June 01, 2016, 11:58:17 PM »
We use a completely different strategy to cope with the heat. When the inside temperature gets to high we put up our tent in the backyard and sleep in that.

It's cool at night, comfortable and no more AC worries. There are only two downsides to it:

1. You sort of have to follow the cycle of the sun. Go to bed when the sun sets and get up when it rises. Otherwise you will be cooked
2. Using the bathroom at night is a little more hassle.

We don't use any fancy camping gear, just the mattress and the blankets from our regular bed.

MoonShadow

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #37 on: June 02, 2016, 12:09:55 AM »
I have a few tricks for AC-less living.  A whole house fan is a great idea, but when the really hot days come in, the cooler nights simply become more humid.  Makes it hard to sleep, even with a constant breeze due to a whole house exhaust fan pulling night air through your window.  There is a low tech solution to this though.  Since your in one place for 7 to 8 hours while sleeping, a very local solution is best.  This one is the flip side to an electric mattress pad for winter...

Take a quiet aquarium air pump, some tubing, an air stone, a cheap styrofoam cooler you are willing to cut up, and old sock, and an empty gallon jug.

Fill the gallon jug with water, put it into the freezer.
Place the frozen jug & air pump into the cooler, run the power cord and tubing out the top through a loosely cut hole.  Run the air stone(s) to near where your feet would be inside your bed, but under a thin summer topsheet.  Wrap your airstone in a sock.  Tuck your topsheet in well along the foot and sides of your bed, so that air must flow up towards your head.  As the air pump runs, it will slowly pull room air into the cooler, which is cooled by the gallon jug of ice, and push it into the air 'envelope' you created with your topsheet.  By the time the air is in the bed, it won't be uncomfortably cool anymore, but it will be dry because the humidity will condense inside the cooler before the air pump pushes it up your body.  A quiet pump is important for obvious reasons. The old sock is also important for two reasons, an air stone does not feel good on your bare foot if you kick it in the night, and any air that infiltrates through the topsheet will condense a bit more humidity onto the sock, so the sock also acts as a towel to keep your bed from getting wet if it is an particularly humid night or if your topsheet isn't particularly good and segregating the air spaces.

Beaker

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #38 on: June 02, 2016, 08:47:42 AM »
I haven't had A/C in 10 years or so. @Radagast had some good tips.

A few more:
- Ideally you want to close windows when the outside temp rises up to the inside temp in the morning, and open windows when the outside temp falls to the inside temp.
- Get shades on every window, and use them.
- Turn off everything you possibly can. Anything consuming electricity is also a little space heater. Many consumer electronics and things with power bricks will generate heat even when turned off - put them on switches or switchable power strips.
- Clothes washer/dryer are obviously terrible as well - run them only in evenings and vent the heat as best you can.
- Don't cook inside during hot parts of the day. Grill out, or cook when it's cool enough to have windows open and then run fans constantly.

Even if you end up using A/C, it'll save lots of electricity if the inside temps start out lower and you minimize the amount of heat production inside the house.

thats why im looking at a whole house fan... to making the morning starting temp much lower than it is right now. For example today my house started at 73 F and is currently at 79 F where the AC has kicked in a few times already.

If possible I want the inside temp to start much lower :)

We have had a whole-house fan in our last two houses. They help, but it's not a silver bullet. Neither of them would cause a particularly large breeze, they just help turn over the air faster and force hot air out of the attic. When we built our most recent house we also put ceiling fans in every room to provide extra cooling. We also use window fans in the bedrooms, partially for the air and partially for white noise to cover up outside sounds.

Also, it probably goes without saying, but general air sealing and insulation are just as important in the summer as the winter. Our new house is *much* better sealed than our old house, so it stays much cooler even though the old one had much more thermal mass due to brick construction.

Take a quiet aquarium air pump, some tubing, an air stone, a cheap styrofoam cooler you are willing to cut up, and old sock, and an empty gallon jug.
(Then do some MacGuyvering...)

That... is actually flippin' brilliant. I might give that a try. Thanks!

MoonShadow

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #39 on: June 02, 2016, 12:08:30 PM »

That... is actually flippin' brilliant. I might give that a try. Thanks!

I need to add, don't get a small volume air pump.  It needs to be on the larger end of retail pumps, like for a 100 gallon tank or so.  A small one will barely be noticeable.  Alternatively, you could use multiple air pumps leading to different air stones across your bed.  There are many variables.

jackiechiles2

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Re: alternative to AC
« Reply #40 on: June 02, 2016, 07:58:16 PM »
I haven't had A/C in 10 years or so. @Radagast had some good tips.

A few more:
- Ideally you want to close windows when the outside temp rises up to the inside temp in the morning, and open windows when the outside temp falls to the inside temp.
- Get shades on every window, and use them.
- Turn off everything you possibly can. Anything consuming electricity is also a little space heater. Many consumer electronics and things with power bricks will generate heat even when turned off - put them on switches or switchable power strips.
- Clothes washer/dryer are obviously terrible as well - run them only in evenings and vent the heat as best you can.
- Don't cook inside during hot parts of the day. Grill out, or cook when it's cool enough to have windows open and then run fans constantly.

Even if you end up using A/C, it'll save lots of electricity if the inside temps start out lower and you minimize the amount of heat production inside the house.

thats why im looking at a whole house fan... to making the morning starting temp much lower than it is right now. For example today my house started at 73 F and is currently at 79 F where the AC has kicked in a few times already.

If possible I want the inside temp to start much lower :)

We have had a whole-house fan in our last two houses. They help, but it's not a silver bullet. Neither of them would cause a particularly large breeze, they just help turn over the air faster and force hot air out of the attic. When we built our most recent house we also put ceiling fans in every room to provide extra cooling. We also use window fans in the bedrooms, partially for the air and partially for white noise to cover up outside sounds.

Also, it probably goes without saying, but general air sealing and insulation are just as important in the summer as the winter. Our new house is *much* better sealed than our old house, so it stays much cooler even though the old one had much more thermal mass due to brick construction.

Take a quiet aquarium air pump, some tubing, an air stone, a cheap styrofoam cooler you are willing to cut up, and old sock, and an empty gallon jug.
(Then do some MacGuyvering...)

That... is actually flippin' brilliant. I might give that a try. Thanks!

You can also try a fan, copper pipe, pump, bucket of ice to make a portable ac like this guy

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NuvzWaBulw