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When your air conditioner breaks down unexpectedly, the heat can be hard to tolerate. Ideally, an air conditioning technician will be out in an hour or two, but what happens if your AC breaks down at the same time as dozens of other people? You’re on a waitlist, but it could be hours before the technician shows up. You can’t leave your home, but it’s also getting hot.

We get how frustrating that is. There’s nothing worse than being in a home that’s heating up when you can’t head to the beach or public pool to cool off. What can you do? Here are some of the best tips for staying cool when it’s hot outside and it’s going to be a few hours before an AC repair technician arrives.

Get to the Lowest Level of the Home

Hot air rises, so go to the lowest room in your home. Close it up as best you can, and avoid running any heat-generating appliances like TVs, computers, and cooking appliances like coffee makers, toasters, etc.

If it’s going to be several hours, an air mattress or pillows on the floor puts you at the lowest possible level. You could put down damp towels and water bottles filled with cold water to help stay cooler longer. Place them on the back of your neck, back of your knees, and forehead, and keep cool that way.

Close Windows and Blinds

As tempting as it is to open windows for fresh air, you’ll do better by closing windows and closing curtains or blinds. Keeping the sun from heating up your home is essential. If you don’t have curtains, shades, or blinds, tack up dark-colored sheets to block out the sun.

Avoid running appliances like the TV, which will start warming up the room. Turn off the lights, stop using computers that heat up the room, and cook all meals outside on a grill if you have to have a warm meal.

Make sure air is circulating in the darker rooms. A floor fan helps with circulation. You may want to consider trick #2 to stay even cooler.

Place a Fan Behind a Tray of Ice

Have you seen people in TV and movies place a bowl or tray of ice in front of a fan? This trick will help for a short time, but you need the right ice. Ideally, you want blocks of ice over cubes.

The reason it works is that the ice absorbs heat as it melts. The air created by the fan passes over the ice, the ice absorbs the heat and starts melting, and the air that reaches you is cooler. But, it only helps if you meet a couple of conditions.

First, you need blocks of ice. The larger the surface area, the better this works. Blocks of ice are far more effective. Second, you can’t be on the other side of the room.  You need to be close to the fan and the ice and in the direct flow of air as it passes over the ice to feel any of the cooler air. If you’re in a chair on the other side of the room, you won’t notice it helps any.

You want fast airflow. The faster your fan blows, the cooler you’ll feel. High-velocity fans are the best to own if you’re trying this ice trick for cooling down when the AC isn’t working.

Run a Dehumidifier

If your home is heating up and fans aren’t helping, shut them off and run a dehumidifier. Make sure your doors and windows are closed. Keep the blinds closed. Removing humidity from a hot Florida home will help you feel more comfortable.

Wear a Damp T-Shirt

As uncomfortable as this may sound, it is the best trick for staying cool when it’s hot. Hop in the shower wearing a t-shirt and shorts. Make sure you’re wearing lightweight cotton, linen, or muslin clothing that breathes. Let the cool water in the shower soak your clothing. If this isn’t appealing, soak them in a sink and put them on.

Let the clothing evaporate and dry naturally. While it does, your skin stays cool. The heat won’t bother you as much when you’re in damp clothing. When they’re dry, repeat the process to continually stay cool.

Fill a Tub With Cool Water

If you have a small child’s pool, fill that on your patio and sit in that when you’re starting to feel hot. If you don’t have that, fill a bathtub and lay in it when you feel warm. Lowering your body temperature will help you stay cooler. Wear clothing so that when you get out, you stay cooler for longer.

Keep a Spray Bottle Nearby

Mist your skin regularly with cool water. A spray bottle is essential and can help you stay cooler longer. Spray your face, neck, arms, and legs as often as you need. Avoid the temptation to wipe the moisture away. You want it to naturally evaporate to help keep your body’s core temperature down.

Drink Plenty of Water

Drink a lot of water when it’s hot outside. As tempting as it is to have ice-cold water, try to drink your water at a faucet or room temperature. If it’s cold, your body works harder to get the cold liquid warmed up to body temperature. That slows your blood flow, which slows the transportation of heat from your bloodstream to the skin surface.

A cold beer or soda may sound appealing, but caffeine and alcohol are dehydrating. They may make you feel warmer than you are. Stick to water. If you really want something bubbly, seltzer or club soda with a slice of orange, lemon, or lime is best.

If you drink room temperature water, the body can focus on cooling your core temperature. Do the same with the foods you eat. Don’t eat anything hot if you can avoid it. Foods like sandwiches, crackers with peanut butter, fruits, and vegetables are good choices. Water-rich produce like melon, grapes, oranges, and tomatoes helps keep you hydrated.

Choose an Air Conditioning Installer and Repair Company With Same-Day Service

When you call about your broken AC unit, make sure the company offers same-day repairs and installations. Even better, make sure the company offers same-day installation throughout the week, even on weekends. You don’t want to have to wait days or weeks to get onto a schedule. All Year Cooling provides same-day repairs and installations to ensure you don’t stay uncomfortable for long.

If our technician determines a new AC is necessary, we’ll work with you on a payment plan that works. If you have the cash up front, great. If not, we work with several financing companies. If you don’t have great credit, no worries. All Year Cooling also offers internal financing to ensure you’ll get the financing option you need to stay cool this summer. Reach us online or by phone and let us help get your home cool again.

All Year Cooling