It’s early June in Steamboat Springs, and it’s already heating up to record-high levels. Beating the heat will be the challenge this season, because, living in Colorado, most homeowners do not have air conditioning.
So what to do? Here are some tips to keep you and your family cool this summer:
1. Add Shade. If possible, add shade to any east or west windows (trees, awnings, etc.) . Keep window shades drawn during the day to minimize heat entry.
2. Keep a tight ship. Minimize the opening and closing of doors and windows during the day to keep hot air fr0m coming inside the home.
3. Open it up at night. When the sun goes down, open up the windows. Add a fan if possible to facilitate the drawing-in of cool air. (Don’t forget to turn off and close up in the morning!)
4. Consider window air conditioners. Central A/C is of course an expensive option, and one not easily justified in our Northwest Colorado climate. But for the months when it does heat up, investing in less-expensive window air conditioners for the bedrooms can make for a more comfortable night’s rest. Be sure to look for and energy-efficient unit, with an energy efficiency ratio (EER) rating above 10.
5. Use your ceiling fan. Keep your air circulating; even mild air movement of 1 mph can make you feel three or four degrees cooler. Also make sure your ceiling fan is turned for summer – you should feel the air blown downward.
6. Check your thermostat. This one may seem obvious, but make sure your thermostat is turned down or off. You don’t want your heat kicking on in the middle of the night when the house cools down!