This article was originally published by Mac Slavo at SHTFPlan on July 23, 2019.
EDITOR’S NOTE: I am republishing this because it may be helpful. We are seeing record-setting heatwaves across large swaths of the United States and there are constant warnings of grid failures and hackings. I have updated this with recent and correct links to help make finding things easier, however, the article is otherwise, unchanged.
If you have your own tips or trick that have worked, please share them with readers! Let’s help each other out.
Because New York just experienced a major heatwave that took down large parts of their power grid leaving people without air conditioning as temperatures soared to the mid-90s, it’s important to understand how to stay cool when the SHTF.
The obvious and easy techniques you can use to keep your family cool are to avoid direct sunlight, close all the blinds or curtains in your home, and dress yourself and your children in loose-fitting thin clothing. Everyone will want to stay well hydrated also. But there are a few ways that you can make yourself more comfortable and cool using solar power: which you should have plenty of during a heatwave.
Many have become dependent on air conditioning to remain comfortable when it’s scorching hot outside. But there are ways you can prepare for a future heatwave – one that also takes down the grid, as just happened in New York.
Buy A Solar Powered Attic Fan
A solar-powered attic fan can reduce the temperature in your home while protecting it against moisture. For a 40-watt cooler, you’ll pay around $175. This will cool off spaces of up to 2200 square feet.
Hang Up Wet Sheets
Hanging wet sheets as a method for staying cool dates all the way back to the ancient Egyptians. Damp sheets or towels hung throughout a home, or even placed on the bed for sleeping at night, cool through evaporation. This hack may not be as effective as making your own solar-powered cooler, but will definitely help in a pinch!
DIY: Make Your Own Solar-Powered Cooler
This particular portable solar-powered air conditioner works by threading cold water through the bucket before being cooled the window screen and dissipated by the fan. It’s a simple and effective concept and works great for those who want to live more sustainably or off the grid. This simple DIY solar-powered cooler comes from Survival Life.
What You’ll Need:
- 5-gallon bucket
- Window screen, black plastic (minimum 24” X 76”)
- Fan (computer fans work great)
- Cooling pad, or filter material
- 1/4″ Aquarium tubing
- Fountain pump
- Push Pin
- Solar panel (optional)
- 1 – 2” hole saw
- Razor tool
Open All The Windows
Another simple trick is to open all the windows at night. Consider your area and security before doing this. If you live off the beaten path, this one’s a no-brainer. However, use your judgment if you live in the city or suburbs. Once the sun starts coming in through the windows, close them and the shade or blinds. Use reflective window panels if it gets incredibly hot in your area.
A more long-term solution is to plant some big trees for shade. After a few years, you will be able to enjoy the natural shade you’ve created if you plant the trees in locations where you think the sun beats down on your home the hottest, especially during summer.
You should also take the time to learn what the signs of heatstroke are in both humans and pets. Knowing the signs and the necessary actions to take should a family member or pet get heatstroke could help prevent the worst from happening during a heatwave.