Energy Saving Home: Keeping Cool this Summer

Reducing your energy consumption this summer will save you money and conserve our power resources. Suggested ideas to keep the air conditioner turned down or turned off during a hot spell. In time we are able to acclimatize our bodies to the outside temperature; however, we have become accustomed to cooler temperatures in the summer and the warmer temperatures in the winter.

Cooling Down Tips

  • Replace the heavy dark fabrics from windows, beds and sofas with soft light colored fabrics
  • Keep the drapes drawn during the day.
  • Open the windows in the early evening to let the fresh night air flow through the home.
  • Put a small fan near the open windows to help with circulating the air.
  • Install water fountains in the living room or family area. Chose a size suitable for the area. Install more than 1 if you have space. The sound of the water will lower your temperature. You can play tricks on the body to cool yourself.
  • Have a fan circulating the air near the water fountain. It gives a nice breeze.
  • Play music with water in the background. If it is an extremely hot day, play winter music to bring you back to the coldness.
  • Fill spray bottles with distilled water. Periodically mist the room and yourself.
  • Wear light colored clothes made from natural fibers. The synthetic fibers make you sweat more because it blocks the body from sweating freely.
  • Keep the body well hydrated. Increase your water intake from 8 to 10 on those very hot days. Stay away from sugary drinks.
  • Eat light meals such as salad and soups. Limit starch as it makes the body feel heavy and causes you to feel warmer.
  • Embrace the warm weather. Work with it, not against it. Keep chores to a minimal in the summer. The heat makes your body slow down.
  • Imagine yourself sitting on a glacier in Alaska on those very hot days. Jump through the sprinkler.
  • Place a cool facecloth on the back of your neck or mist it with your spray bottle.
    The Art of Keeping Cool Meditation

The key to keeping cool in a home environment with no air conditioner and limited fans is powered by your mind.
Cool Meditation Exercise

Lie on the floor or on the ground with your head supported if desired.

Ceramic floors are ideal if you do this inside the home. Outside of the home, stretch out on a flat surface that provides you with some shade.

Close your eyes and just relax the entire body. If a part of the body feels tense, gently squeeze the muscle and release.

Breathe slowly and softly.

After the body has begun to relax, begin the cool meditation. Do not become anxious, if you are still thinking about your worries; just let it flow through you.
Cool Meditation Visualization

Visualize a waterfall that is deep within a forested region. The falls are cascading down and you are being sprayed by the cool mountain water as you lie on your back in this natural setting. Just experience this feeling and be calm. Try and remember a time when you felt refreshed on a hot sunny day and try and recapture the moment in your mind.

The key is to relax and really experience this moment.

This exercise will cool the body and make the heat less unbearable. As you release the image, be sure to feel the coolness of the mountain water and keep it with you throughout the day.

How to Get Rid of Household Mold

get rid of household mold

Tips for Preventing and Eradicating Mold in Your Home

There’s nothing worse to you as a homeowner than discovering you have a household mold problem. Because its ugly presence can be a nightmare, it’s important to both recognize a mold problem before it grows worse, and take preventative measures so you won’t have household mold in the future.

Not only is household mold ugly and destructive to your house, it’s also bad for your health. You could be suffering from a household mold problem and not even realize it. Symptoms may range from anything from breathing difficulties to sinus congestion, watery eyes, and throat irritations to nausea, vomiting, fatigue and rashes.

How Molds Enter Your Home

Although mold growing outdoors is the natural result of breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves, it’s detrimental to both your home and family when growing indoors. Mold spores, which are invisible to the naked eye, circulate through the air, looking for a wet surface to land in your home. Once they find it, they begin to grow. Therefore, to prevent molds growing in your home, you have to check for moisture.

household mold

Hidden Mold

Although molds usually grow on fibers, woods, and damp paper, sometimes it’s not easy to know if you have a mold problem, as it could be lurking in your house without your even seeing it.

Even black mold isn’t visible at first. However, a few warning signs may include musty smells (although you can’t see it growing.) This is the result of widespread water damage, such as a burst pipe within a wall.

Too often mold is mistaken for common mildew. If you try to remove what appears to be mildew with bleach and water and it still comes back, chances you may have black mold, which is a bigger problem. If you suspect your home has this kind of toxic mold, call a trained professional because you don’t want to agitate mold spores, creating more damage.

Preventative Measures – The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) recommends a number of preventative measures to keep mold from growing.

Repair all leaks – Immediately repair and dry any water leaks within 24 hours.

Clean hard surfaces – Regularly clean hard surfaces with bleach-based products that not only kill mold but also destroy and neutralize any allergy-inducing spores. If you suffer from allergies or asthma, then have someone who isn’t sensitive do the cleaning.

Aerate all crawlspaces – Besides making sure all household crawlspaces (such as in attics and basements) are well ventilated, also place plastic over dirt in outside crawlspaces to keep out moisture.

Use exhaust fans – To guard against moisture in rooms such as your kitchen and bathrooms, install and use exhaust fans.

Use caution with humidifiers – Although humidifiers are needed, especially during the dry winter months, be sure to turn them off if you see condensation on your windows as that’s a sign of moisture.

Use dehumidifiers – Be sure to use a dehumidifiers in your basement, especially during hot humid weather.

Don’t carpet bathrooms and basements – If you already have carpeting installed over concrete, regular check for any signs of mold. Rather than carpeting your basement, it’s best to install flooring with area rugs that be taken up and washed. Installing a vapor barrier over concrete is also advisable.

Although finding mold growing in your home is not good news, at least you can feel good that you discovered it before it grew worse. Just take a deep breath (not literally) and do what you now know to do to get rid of it. If the problem reaches beyond your expertise, then find some dependable professionals who can take care of the problem. Most of all, take steps to prevent it from happening again.