Monday 28 November 2016

Keeping Cool In Summer

Summer is about to hit Melbourne next week and temperatures will rise to above 40 degrees Celsius during the next three months. I've started thinking and planning a strategy for coping with this heat. I'll start a list of things I do. I'm hoping everyone can add their ideas to the list so we can help each other.

Here's what I plan to do -

* Open doors in the morning to cool the house and close as soon as the temperature rises 
*  Keep the curtains closed all day 
*  Turn potable electric fans on while the cooling is on a little lower. The cool breeze from the fans is great and helps to circulate the air 
*  Keeping jugs of water in the fridge 
*  Filling ice cube trays for the freezer.  Great for drinks and wiping over hot faces 
*  Making icy poles in the freezer.  Orange juice,  cordial and flavoured milk work well. 
*  Making jelly for desserts 
*  Using wet face washers to cool you down 
*  Making a couple of day's worth of salads at a time 
*  Vacuuming early in the morning 
*  Using a carpet sweeper if it's too hot to vacuum 
*  Finding the coolest room in the house and hiding there

For the chickens we -

*  Dunk them in cool water a couple of times a day 
*  Spray them with the garden hose 
*  Feed them frozen watermelon 
*  Freeze 2 litre milk containers and putting them in the coop at night ( air conditioning )

What do you do to keep cool in Summer ?


  1. I try and cook outside on the BBQ as much as possible, especially on those really hot summer evenings, it keeps that extra heat out of the house.

    I put ice cubes in the dog and rabbit water to keep it cool for them too.

  2. My place of work closes down for a week over summer. Other than that I avoid taking holidays in summer as I work in air-conditioning. Our beautiful kelpie/collie cross passed away earlier this year, but in past summers we would fill a child's wading pool with water so she could cool down.

  3. Hi, Wendy. That hot weather's coming ... I saw a forecast for 34C here for Fri and Sat this coming week. Ugh! The front of our house faces South-West and the back North-East. We're high-set up on a hill with verandahs along most of the exterior that shade the walls. Large glass windows and sliding doors, and no internal walls in the main living areas, allows us to catch any breezes and get them flowing inside. We also have very heavy curtains and blinds which I open and close according to time of day. Right now, morning, and the house is all open. Once the sun swings around to the west, I'll close up the curtains on that side of the house. We installed solar panels and so on really hot & still days, when the sun is beating down, we use air-con and are drawing on our solar power to run it. On really hot days too, I try not to use the oven so as not to add further heat ... salads are the order of the day here all through summer. Stay cool! Meg:)

  4. Use a cooling vest when you are doing housework. You can buy them online or make one yourself. Easy to do if you can sew or know someone who can. A vest with pockets for ice packs worn close to your body is amazing in summer and a lot cheaper than aircon.


  5. If the humidity is low and the heat is high, hang a damp sheet in front of your fan, over the back of a chair is good. Don't do this if there is already high humidity. Place drought tolerant trees or large shrubs in pots along a brick wall that has the sun on it. Have micro sprinklers going on hot days. Due to transpiration of the plant you will end up with a cool cell of air happening around the plants. The shade they project onto the wall also helps keep the heat down.
    Cook outside. This could be on a barby or in an electric frypan. We have a barby with a side wok burner. We also have a camping gas ring on an outside bench on the veranda. We do the majority of our cooking here in the summer. Our barby is hooded so we can, and do, bake cakes and biscuits this way.
    On the same bench as the burner I have a glass water/drinks jar with a tap on it. I fill this with ice and water in the morning. There are cups upside down on a tray, Household members and visitors help themselves to the cold water here. This saves on the fridge being opened every time someone wants a drink. Saves on the fly wire doors being open and shut, or left open for the flies to come into the house(the bane of my life in summer)
    I have a children's blow up pool that I can fit under my veranda. No it's not for children, but for me. I get in this when I get hot and find that I can go all day with these regular cool offs. I do have a bore so can fill this fairly easily and quickly. Hubby put an underground drain in when he paved the veranda area. This means that after all the plants have had a bucket poured over them I can tip the rest either down the drain, a waste of water, or bucket the rest onto the grass.
    A chilly willy, neck cooler. is wonderful if you just have to keep going in the heat. I'm thinking of you and your cleaning jobs. They're super easy and cheap to make. I use mine all the time in summer. The cooler on your neck pulse points really does help.
    Get as many jobs done in the cooler early hours or the later evening hours. We live a quick walk away from the beach and will have a swim in the morning before it gets too hot. Being damp keeps you lovely and cool.
    You have stated the rest of the things that we do.

  6. They are all great ideas, Wendy. I like having a fan on when its stinking hot as I reckon the circulating air makes if feel cooler. We live in a stone home so if its hot and we keep it closed up, we can get to the later part of the day before having to use air con, if we use fan.

    Cheers - Joolz xx

  7. Wendi, I am following this post and comments closely as we have some very hot and humid weather during the summers here in our part of the U.S. We are heading into winter here but I'm taking notes for next summer. I don't have anything to add to what's already been mentioned but I surely do appreciate you writing about this topic!

  8. I don't think I have ever been that hot but spare a thought for us in the UK it is supposed to be -2C tommorrow

  9. Here in tropical North Queensland it's hot but it's the humidity that makes it unbearable! There's not a lot you can do when it's this bad. We sleep in air conditioning but when you wake up whether it be 4am or 5am, it's already hot and humid. I try to do what I can with the overhead fans on full speed but come midday there is no where to hide so the air conditioning goes on. Sometimes if the humidity reduces by evening outside in the shade is bearable. I too would freeze water in empty milk bottles for my dog to cool off.

  10. Our house faces almost due West so the whole front of the house gets the afternoon sun. I got vinyl shutters for all those windows and they make such a difference as insulation. There is a palm clump that shades the LR and I shut the doors of the other 2 front facing rooms from about noon.
    We try to open strategic windows for airflow and any baking & heavy cleaning gets done early in the morning. Such a lot of good ideas here, Heather


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