No Air Conditioning? Tricks for Staying Cool

Posted On Thursday, 25 July 2013
No Air Conditioning? Tricks for Staying Cool
As we've all noticed this Summer, heat waves are on the rise. But how can you beat the heat when you don’t have air conditioning?

When Summer Turns Sour

It’s the time of year you’ve all been waiting for, but then you get hit with that unbearable sticky, humid heat. It can leave you wondering if you should even dare to be outside.  On nearly every newscast, reporters and health officials are encouraging us to stay indoors. That’s great for those who can rejoice in their AC, but what about those of us who don’t have AC?

Yes, it may come as a surprise to some that people do, in fact, live without AC.

I've been lucky enough that every place that I've ever lived has had it. But, I do distinctly remember visiting my brother and his (now) wife in Milwaukee last summer, during a brutal heat wave.  

They don’t have AC, and I remember thinking to myself, "this is just awful. I will never take AC for granted again!"

But, other than nearly losing my mind a couple of times, I did learn some great tricks that allowed us live and to fall asleep, even when the thermometer rose above 100 degrees.

Drink Up

This may feel like a no brainer, but it makes a huge difference. Always make sure you’re drinking enough water. On hot, dangerous days it is crucial that you stay hydrated  to reduce your risk of heat stroke, heat exhaustion, and fainting.


With the heat index rising, the humidity levels make the effects of the temperature even worse. When the humidity level is above 50 percent, it can cause a growth spurt of mildew and mold, which is bad news for your health, and for those who suffer from allergies or asthma.  Meet your new best friend, a dehumidifier. A dehumidifier will help reduce the level of humidity in your home, making it feel significantly more comfortable.


You can never have enough fans placed throughout your home! Box fans come in handy as you can place them directly into the windows. This allows the hot air in your home to move around, creating a wind chill effect.

Pulse Points

If you need a fast way to cool down, apply a cold water soaked washcloth to the pulse points on your body. The main points are on your neck and wrists, as well as behind your knees and elbows. In fact, the best way to cool off is to stick your feet into a cold bucket of water, as there are many of pulse points located on the feet and ankles.

Eat Cool

When the mercury tops 90 degrees, who the heck wants to indulge in heavy foods, or even be cooking with a hot stove?  Try to avoid preparing meals that require using an oven or stovetop, which can create excess heat in your kitchen and throughout your home. Try fixing a refreshing summer salad instead, or prepare something simple that requires no heat.

Au Naturel

Put your cuddly self on hold for a bit, and remind your equally heat-suffering partner that: Less is more. Sharing a bed when it’s hot can create a lot of excess heat, not to mention all the fabric from the sheets and your cute matching pajamas. Instead, try a loose cotton shirt and breathable undies. Or, if you’re daring (or beyond caring), wear nothing.

Shower Essentials

A nice cold shower right before bed can help lower body temperature as well as rinse off the sweat build up from the day. Something that I love when the days are scorching is Dr. Bronner’s Peppermint Magic Soap. Not only does it smell great, but it leaves your body fresh and tingling from the cooling peppermint. Another after shower essential that I use daily, is baby powder. Liberally applied, baby powder helps keep your skin cool and dry when it's bound to sweat from the heat.

We may be glad that the dog-days of Summer are here, but if you are living without air conditioning, these tips will help you get through the heat of the season, with your cool intact!

Lauren Allen

Lauren Allen (Scialabba) is the Assistant Director of Operations and Producer at Doctorpodcasting where she helps marketing departments in healthcare organizations grow their podcast library and assist their needs on a daily basis. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with family, eating pizza, and soaking up Chicago's summer weather.

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