Eco-Friendly Summer, Part Two

The high heat and humidity of summer is here. In a prior Planet Jewish post, we provided some simple tips to keep your home cool the environmental way over the summer. Below are some additional tips that should help you reduce waste (baal tashchit) and honor God’s creation, the Earth, through the dog days of August. Follow these tips even if you are forced to run your air conditioning most or all of the day due to extreme heat.

  • Place a floor fan at the top of your basement: the basement is naturally the coolest part of your house. Placing a floor fan at the open basement door will help bring the cool air up to your main living level
  • Use major appliances during the coolest part of the day: Your home is less likely to become overheated if you use major appliances, such as the dishwasher and washing machine, early or late in the day
  • Turn up your thermostat: You use 1 to 3 percent less energy for every degree higher your thermostat is set in the summer. Even putting the thermostat up one degree will save energy and you will likely not feel the difference comfort wise.
  • Better insulate your windows: Consider putting up sunscreen-fabric curtains or roller shades in your home. These keep out the worst of the sun’s heat over the summer. If you are purchasing new windows, ask about panes with a low solar heat gain coefficient.
  • Use a spritzer throughout the day to cool yourself off: When travelling out and about in the heat or after doing needed work outdoors , use a water filled spray bottle that has previously been refrigerated. Use it as needed throughout the day. Also consider refrigerating any lotions and toners you use on your face and body to get an extra cooling sensation when you apply them in the morning and evening.

Every little bit helps when you follow any or all of the above steps to ward off summer heat in an environmentally conscious way.

Resources: Albany Times Union (

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