Keep cool this summer without a high electricity bill

With overnight temperatures reaching record levels in some parts of the country, this summer promises to be another hot one.

The cost of energy is rising like summer temperatures, so in a hot summer you can quickly rack up a large electricity bill trying to stay cool. Here are some tips on how to keep your cool without breaking the bank.

Up to 30 percent of unwanted heat comes from your windows. Utilising shades, curtains and the like can save you up seven percent on your bills and lower indoor temperatures by up to six degrees. Closing the blinds helps to prevent your home from becoming a miniature greenhouse.

Use ice to make your fan blow cooler air. Fill a bowl with ice or an ice pack and position it at an angle in front of a large fan. Direct the fan so that the air whips off the ice at an extra-chilled temperature.

Manage your body temperature, not the room temperature. Keep hydrated. Sip iced drinks, apply a cold cloth to strong-pulsed areas like your neck and wrists, even soak in a cold bath to cool yourself from the inside out.

Create cross-breezes in your home, particularly when you go to bed, as temperatures generally drop during the night. Consider using fans to help force the breeze as it will help cool you as it travels across your skin.

Don’t use your oven — grill food outside instead, as long as fire bans aren’t in place. It’s a healthy way to cook and, if you eat outside too, you keep all heat there.

Switch to LED lighting to reduce energy costs. Incandescent bulbs waste about 90 percent of their energy in the heat they emit, so disposing of them will make a small difference in cooling your home while lowering your electricity bill.

Here are even more hot tips to help you stay cool this summer.