Though the heat of the summer months can be a challenge, one of the most difficult times of day is actually after the sun has set. Trying to sleep when you're hot is tough, especially if you're the type of person who needs to have a blanket over you to be comfortable. If you are losing sleep or sweating through the night, there are things you can do to help stay cool at night, and you don't need to spend a lot of money to do it.
Change Your Bedsheets
The material of your pillowcases, sheets and blankets can actually make a world of a difference. When it's hot out, stay away from satins, silks and polyesters and switch to lightweight cotton fabrics. These are lighter and breathe much easier, which allows heat to escape your body and cool air to reach you.
Create a Cross Breeze
Air flow is important to keeping yourself cool during the night. If you open your window but don't run any fans or leave another door or window open, it's harder for heat to escape and cool air to come in. Set up a fan directly across from an open window to help the air circulate. Most warm nights will still be slightly cooler than your body temperature, so by using outside air effectively you can stay cool without too much effort.
Run Your Air Conditioner
This may seem obvious, but many homeowners like to turn their air conditioners off during the night to save money. In some cases this can work, but it depends heavily on your environment. If you are in an area where it gets humid often, you may be better off sticking with your air conditioner. This is because your air conditioner doesn't just cool the air—it also removes moisture from it.
To save money on your electric bill if you do opt to use your air conditioner more frequently, avoid mistakes like setting the temperature lower during the night. The best method is to set your thermostat to the highest temperature you are comfortable with, and don't go lower. Even if it is cooler outside, your air conditioner won't run so much more efficiently that it will save you money. For more information, contact Central Aire Conditioning or a similar company.
Turn Off Your Electronics
By themselves, individual electronics don't put off too much heat. However, if you're in a room with multiple computers or a large television, this can make the temperature jump by up to several degrees. Turn off all your electronics an hour or two before bed to let the heat dissipate. Incidentally, the same goes for lights. The darker your room, the cooler it can be.
Create Your Own Cool Air
If you don't want to run the air conditioner through your entire house just to cool one room, you can use a little trick with ice and a fan. Fans by themselves don't cool the air, they only push it around — and in fact generate heat as the motor runs — but by placing a tray of ice cubes in front of the fans, you can cool the air that blows your way. Just remember to use a large tray so the melting water doesn't drip everywhere. The best part is that you can take the melted water and re-freeze it again for the next night.