Home Improvement Tips and Projects to Beat the Summer Heat (2024)

Here are some tips to keep your house cool and save on your power bills this summer — from simple measures like closing curtains to block the sun to more involved projects like installing a central vacuum system — as well as home improvement projects to tackle when it’s too hot to work outside in the summer months.

Keeping Your House Cool

Try these tips to keep your house cooler and lower your energy bills this summer!

Keep the Sun Out

Lower blinds or close curtains and other window treatments on the sunny side of the house during the day to reduce solar heat gain in your home, which also takes some strain off your air conditioning system.

Planting deciduous shade trees, such as oaks and maples, or other landscaping on the south and west sides of your house is a great long-term solution to block the sun’s rays and keep your home cool.

Danny Lipford with Carrier central air conditioner unit.

AC Maintenance

Performing routine home maintenance on your air conditioner is essential to keep it working efficiently. Start by having your AC unit inspected by a quality HVAC pro, such as those from Carrier, to make sure the unit is working properly.

HVAC technicians can assess your HVAC system and make small changes to it so it uses less energy and lowers your electricity bills. For example, they will caulk small holes in your central air system to reduce air leaks, oil moving parts, clean your coils, and more.

Besides professional maintenance, you should replace the air filter every month or two during the summer to allow your system to operate at peak efficiency and keep the air in your home clean.

Update Your Thermostat

Danny Lipford with Carrier Côr thermostat.

If the thermostat on your air conditioner hasn’t been replaced with a smart or programmable model, such as Carrier’s smart thermostats, you’re spending up to 20% more cooling your home.

Programmable thermostats automatically adjust the temperature in your home when you’re away and lower it back to a comfortable level before you arrive home.

Smart thermostats are Wi-Fi enabled to allow remote access from a smartphone or tablet. They also feature smart setback which allows the thermostat to intelligently adapt to changes for even greater energy efficiency.

Create a Breeze

Fans are a great way to create an artificial breeze to cool you down, but they only work when standing in front or under them, so turn fans on only when you’re in the room.

To heighten the cooling effect of ceiling fans, homeowners should set the motor so the blades rotate counterclockwise when looking up at the fan.

Attaching hose to wall outlet of NuTone central vacuum system.

Improve Indoor Air Quality

Houses today are built tighter than ever, which is great for improving energy efficiency, but it can also trap polluted air in your home.

Cleaning carpet with NuTone central vacuum.

To improve indoor air quality, run bathroom vent fans during and for 15-20 minutes after bathing or showering and kitchen range hoods when cooking.

Another way to improve the indoor air quality in your home is by installing a central vacuum system.

Unlike canister and upright vacuums, which recirculate the air in your home, a central vacuum system exhausts the air outside. In addition, a central vacuum system is much quieter to operate.

Central vacuums are available in three different sizes, delivering from 500 to 650 air watts of power.

Indoor Home Improvement Projects

Rather than braving the heat outside in the summertime, this is a great time to catch up on some often overlooked interior home improvement projects.

Family Photo Wall

Packages of Advanced Strength and Repositionable Glue Dots

Relive your favorite family memories by turning a wall in your home into a family photo gallery.

Save money by matting and framing the photos yourself with this easy summer home improvement project.

To decide on the layout of the pictures on the wall, apply Repositionable Glue Dots to the back of each frame, then position the frames in the desired location on the wall.

When you have all the photos where you want them, mark each location with painter’s masking tape, remove the pictures from the wall, and hang the frames with picture hangers.

Replace Cabinet Hardware

You’ll be amazed at how much difference updating the hardware on your kitchen cabinets or bathroom vanity can make.

Start by measuring your existing knobs or pulls or taking one with you to the home center to make sure the new hardware you buy will be large enough to cover the footprint of the old hardware.

Next, stick Advanced Strength Glue Dots to the back of the new cabinet hardware to hold it in place in the desired location, then use a cordless drill to screw the new hardware to the cabinets.

Using Glue Dots to attach a tile to a wall.

Advance Strength Glue Dots can also be used for a number of household repairs, including attaching moldings and holding loose tiles in place.

Watch Cool Summer Home Improvement Tips and Products to find out more.

Final Thoughts

I hope these tips and projects help you stay cool and productive at home this summer. Remember, small changes like using fans wisely and blocking the sun can add up to big improvements in comfort and energy savings. And when the heat keeps you inside, use that time to catch up on DIY projects that will make your home more beautiful and functional. With a little preparation and creative thinking, you can make this summer at home the best one yet!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some quick ways to cool down my house?

Close curtains/blinds on sunny windows, run fans to create a breeze, and make sure your AC is properly maintained.

What indoor projects can I do when it’s too hot outside?

Create a family photo wall, replace cabinet hardware, organize your home room by room, or do minor repairs like fixing loose tiles.

How can I improve my home’s indoor air quality in the summer?

Run bathroom fans during showers, use the kitchen range hood when cooking, and consider a central vacuum system that exhausts air outside.

Article Update Log

Reviewed for accuracy, cost data, industry best practices, and expert advice by Jonathon Jachura.

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