Sustainable living: Keeping your cool

Ideas for keeping our homes cool without racking up huge power bills and depleting the environment.

  • Close curtains and blinds during the day to keep the heat out, and open them at night so the cooler evening air can circulate.
  • Turn off appliances when you’re not using them, like TVs and computers. A computer can generate as much heat as a one-bar heater!
  • Having good insulation in your home can reduce cooling (and heating) costs by as much as 40%. This will also make your home more comfortable year round. Consider retrofitting insulation if you don’t have any.
  • Turn your fan off when you’re not in the room. Fans don’t change the air temperature, but they do keep you cool by circulating air around your skin.

For more ideas on making your home energy efficient, visit

First published: Mar 2008

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