5 Ways to Cool Down While Waiting for Your Air Conditioner to Be Fixed

Learn about HVAC & Home Performance in Houston.

Photo of a Woman waiting for AC to be fixed

October 23, 2023

Air Conditioning

Air conditioner repairs can be frustrating, especially during hot days of the summer. What makes it worse is that air conditioners tend to break down when you need them the most. The timing of the breakdown is not ideal and if it is a busy the season, AC repair technicians tend to have busy schedules, however this means that you might have to wait for awhile for the AC to get fixed, so its best to reach out immediately to a local AC repair specialist in Houston so they can you on their schedule.

When the ambient temperature is too high, you are likely to feel uncomfortable. This is a way for your body to signal to you that it needs to cool down. High ambient temperature is not only an inconvenience, it is also dangerous as you can suffer from heat exhaustion or heat stroke.  Fortunately, there are a few ways you can cool down while waiting for your air conditioner to be fixed.

Open Windows

If you need to stay indoors while you are waiting for your air conditioner to be fixed, open your windows. Ideally, you want to open multiple windows so you have some cross ventilation. This way, the air or breeze will enter through the opening and flow direction through the space to the exit. Even if there is not a strong breeze outside, open windows can still help you cool down. 

The best times to open windows are during the night and early morning as the heat is typically the lowest during these times. Of course, if it’s scorching hot outside, opening the windows might not help much. In that case, you will have to look at other ways to cool down. Also, leaving the windows open can be a security risk, especially for windows on the ground floor. Combining open windows with box fans is a great combination to cool down.

Take a Cold Shower

Cold showers can help you cool down.  Not only will you cool down while taking the cold shower, but the moisture on your skin and hair will help keep you cool after the shower as well. As air evaporates from your skin and hair, it creates a cooling effect. 

The body responds to the skin temperature as the cold water activates the receptors in our skin, making us feel cooler. Taking a cold shower is a quick and effective way to cool down your body. Cold showers also offer some other benefits including a boost in energy levels and immune system. 

Close the Blinds and Curtains 

A high percentage of heat enters your home or office through the windows, especially if you have large windows or if the windows get a lot of sunlight. A quick way to cool down your property is to close the blinds and curtains. Windows that face the south or west tend to get the most direct sunlight. During times when there is less intense sunlight, such as evenings, you can consider opening the blinds and curtains. Closing the blinds and curtains can reduce the indoor temperature by as much as 20 degrees. 

The ability of curtains or blinds to block heat depends on several factors including the type of material and color. If you have dark-colored curtains or blinds, they will absorb more heat. Ideally, you want light-colored materials so the heat gets reflected. Just keep in mind that turning on the lights and other electronics can also create heat, so only use the lights and appliances when needed. 

Use Portable Fans 

If you have ceiling fans, they can provide much-needed relief from the heat. While they won’t generate cold air, they can help increase the rate at which our bodies lose heat through convection and evaporation. This is what makes us feel cool when we are under a ceiling fan However, many properties in the U.S. do not have ceiling fans. You can get portable fans as a temporary arrangement while your AC is getting fixed. They are not expensive, and won’t take up much space. The really small ones are highly portable so you can take them with you around your home or office.

If you want the portable fan to give cold air, consider placing a bowl of ice cubes in front of the fan. The misty air from the fan will help you cool down. This won’t last forever, as the ice cubes will melt and the cold water will eventually be room temperature, but you can always refill the bowl with new ice cubes. This DIY arrangement is a handy replacement for an AC. You can also consider getting a window fan, which is a boxed fan open from both sides. You can place them on an open window to improve air circulation and dissipate heat. 

Handheld fans are also an alternative to ceiling fans. While it can be a bit inconvenient to keep a fan, they can be quite effective in keeping your cool. These types of fans are available in all shapes and sizes, and some even come with a standard for hands-free use. 

Stay Downstairs

If you have multiple floors in your property, you can consider staying downstairs to help beat the heat. The top floor is going to be the hottest. The top floor is closest to the roof, which gets direct sunlight. In addition, warm air rises while cool air settles on the bottom. This means that the top floor is going to naturally have more warm air. 

If you have a basement in your property, that is going to be significantly cooler than any other floor. The basement is insulated from all sides, resulting in excellent protection from the heat in the summer and cold in the winter. You can expect the difference between the top floor and the basement to be enough that you might not feel the need to have an air conditioner. 

Using a combination of several methods to beat the heat is your best chance to minimize the inconvenience and frustration of an AC breakdown. Ideally, you want to keep up regular maintenance and periodic inspections of the AC to ensure you don’t have to face such a situation.