The old-school ways to stay cool in the heat

If you are trying to save money and don't want to use the air conditioner this summer, why not bring back the creative ways you stayed cool as a child. Source: Getty

It’s not even a month into summer and we’ve already battled through some stinking hot days with temperatures soaring well into the 30s.

But if you have air conditioning it’s not really a problem until you venture outdoors, with your home staying icy cold at all hours of the day and night. Nowadays, it’s common to have an air conditioner, especially for those in the northern parts of the country where the temperature barely dips below 20.

However, when you were a child that certainly wasn’t the case, and air conditioners were considered some sort of luxury. Instead, families had to come up with their own creative ways to stay cool through the hot Aussie summers.

They might seem a little bizarre to your kids and grandkids, but back then there was no other option if you wanted to have a good night’s sleep. And there’s no reason why you can’t use the same old-fashioned techniques today to help save money.

Hang wet laundry through the house

Instead of taking the freshly washed sheets and towels outside to dry or popping them in the clothes dryer, hang them up against the windows. The water in the items will evaporate and cool the air which flows through your house.

Light coloured towels and sheets generally work best as they don’t attract the heat like black. Once you’ve felt the temperature drop a bit, turn on the ceiling fan to keep the cool air circulating around.

If it’s not washing day then you can simply dampen your towels a bit more after you’ve had a shower.

Keep underwear in the freezer

If the hot weather is getting to you, pop your undies in the freezer and let them cool for half an hour or so. Then slip them back on and you’ll feel instant relief.

Silk and cotton are the ideal options to use for this trick and make sure to stick them in a plastic bag before you put them in the freezer to keep them protected.

Sleep in refrigerated sheets

The easy solution to a restful night’s sleep when the weather is hot is to sleep on top of all of your blankets and sheets. But if you’re one of those people who likes to have something on top at all times, then put your sheet in the fridge for an hour or so before you head off to bed.

Simply fold the sheet up tightly, place it into a large plastic bag and pop it on an empty shelf. When you’re ready for bed, grab it out and drape it over your body.

Blow a fan across ice

If you have a standing fan, place a bucket of ice in front of it and let the air blow over the top. It will work just like an air conditioner, but at a much lower cost.

Alternatively, you can place a wet cloth or towel over the front of the fan – it will have a similar affect as using the ice.

Apply a damp cloth to your neck

Soak a cloth and wring out any excess water, then place it flat in the freezer and leave for at least an hour. When you start to feel the affects of the heat, grab it out and wrap it around your neck.

If you can’t be bothered waiting for the towel to cool down in the freezer you can simply drape the damp towel around your neck instead. It won’t stay cold for as long, but you can go back and dampen it again whenever needed.

While you might not want to walk around town with the towel, it’s a great way to stay cool while watching television or doing small jobs around the house.

Stories that matter
Emails delivered daily
Sign up