32 Alternatives to Central Air Conditioning That Will Keep You Cool This Summer

It’s summertime, and that means it’s time to beat the heat! If you’re looking for a way to stay cool this season without breaking the bank, consider some of these alternatives to central air conditioning.

From fans to portable AC units, there are plenty of options available to help keep you comfortable all summer long. Keep reading for 32 cooling solutions that will help you stay cool without spending a fortune!

In this article:

1. Air cooling fan

A fan is a great way to cool down a small space. You can find fans that oscillate, which will help circulate the air around the room, or fans with a built-in ionizer to help clean the air as well.

Pros of using an air cooling fan:

– It reuses the air already in your room to cool it off.

– Can be used in conjunction with a window unit or central air system to help circulate the air even more.

Cons of using air cooling fan:

– Doesn’t actually remove any heat from the room so you can only use fans when temperatures are below 85 degrees.

Cost:

$20-50 depending on the size of your room.

2. Attic fan

An attic fan can pull hot air out of your home, making it more comfortable to live in.

The best time to use an attic fan is in the morning after opening up doors and windows in your home.

Pros of using attic fan:

* Lower humidity levels in your home.

* Cooler air since hot air is pulled out.

Cons of using attic fan:

* A decrease in energy efficiency because warm air enters the house through doors and windows that are open, which negates the effect of an attic fan pulling hot air out.

3. Clothesline/clothes drying rack

Hang clothes outside to dry instead of using an electric or gas-powered clothes dryer.

Pros of air drying:

* Saves energy and money on utility bills by not running a clothes dryer, which is one of the biggest electricity consumers in your home.

Cons of air drying:

* Increased wear and tear on clothes as they are exposed to weather elements.

* Takes longer than using a clothes dryer.

4. Window fan

Window fans can pull cool air into your home from outside or push hot air out of your home.

Pros of using window fan:

* Low cost – most window fans are around $30, so they are a cost-effective cooling option.

* Portable – window fans can be used in any room and even moved from room to room as needed.

Cons of using window fan:

* Not as powerful or effective at cooling your home as an AC unit.

5. Ice packs/gel packs

Ice packs and gel packs can be used to cool down your body when you are feeling overheated or feverish. They can also be used to cool down your bed.

Ice packs or gel packs can be placed in front of fans to create a cool breeze.

Pros of using ice packs/gel packs:

* Low cost – you only need to buy one pack and then just refill with water as needed, so they are inexpensive.

Cons of using ice packs/gel packs:

* They need to be refilled with water often, so you have to remember to do this.

* May not stay cold for as long as some other methods.

6. Misting fan

A misting fan can help cool the air around you and is a good option if you are unable to use an AC unit or another type of cooling.

Pros of using misting fan:

* Low cost – most outdoor misting fans are under $100, so they are more affordable than many other cooling options.

Cons of using misting fan:

* May not cool a large area or have any effect on the temperature in your home.

7. Awnings

An awning can be placed over windows to block sunlight and heat from entering your home.

Pros of using awnings:

– Can be placed over any window

– Block sunlight and heat from entering your home

– Keep you cool and comfortable in the summertime

Cons of using awnings:

– May not be effective in very hot climates

– Must be kept clean or they will reduce their effectiveness

8. Biomass Cooling

Biomass cooling is a natural way to cool your home. Similar to air conditioning, it uses evaporative cooling techniques which help to lower the temperature of warm air by contacting it with water.

The difference between biomass cooling and traditional AC units is that biomass coolers draw their energy from the sun in order to power their systems.

Pros of biomass cooling:

– Environmentally friendly and renewable source of energy

– Operates using principles that are found in nature

Cons of biomass cooling:

– May be more expensive than traditional AC units to install

– Needs a sunny location to work effectively

9. Dehumidifier

A dehumidifier is a machine that removes moisture from the air. This can be helpful in climates where the humidity levels are high, as it will help to cool the air and make it more comfortable to breathe.

Pros of using a dehumidifier:

– Removes excess moisture from the air, making it more comfortable to breathe

– Can help lower your energy bill by reducing the need for air conditioning

Cons of using a dehumidifier:

– May not be effective in very hot climates where humidity levels are low or moderate

10. Ductless mini-split air conditioner

A ductless mini-split air conditioner is a type of AC unit that does not require ductwork to cool your home. These units use refrigerant lines instead of ducts and can be more energy efficient than traditional central air conditioning systems.

The downside is that they are more expensive to install, but if you don’t have the option of installing traditional ductwork, they may be your best bet.

Pros of using a ductless mini-split AC:

– More energy efficient than traditional central air conditioning systems

– Do not require ductwork to install

Cons of using a ductless mini-split AC:

– More expensive to install than traditional central air conditioning systems

– May not be as effective in reducing humidity levels as other types of AC units Fan

11. Evaporative air coolers (or swamp coolers)

An evaporative air cooler is a type of AC unit that uses the natural process of evaporation to cool your home. These units are very affordable and easy to install, but they do require a water source in order to work properly. The downside is that they can be less effective than other types of AC units in hot, dry climates.

Pros of using an evaporative air cooler:

– Very affordable and easy to install

– Do not require a lot of maintenance

Cons of using an evaporative air cooler:

– May not be as effective as other types of AC units in hot, dry climates

– Need a water source in order to work properly

12. Exhaust fans

An exhaust fan is a type of air mover that uses the natural process of convection to cool your home. These units are very affordable and easy to install, but they do require electricity or gas in order to run. The downside is that they can be less effective than other types of AC units in hot, humid climates.

Pros of using exhaust fans:

– They can actually help with air circulation in your home, which is a huge plus.

– Exhaust fans are relatively affordable and easy to install. You just need power or gas to operate them.

Cons of using exhaust fans:

– Exhaust fans tend not to work well when it’s hot outside because they rely on convection for cooling.

– The air being circulated might not be as clean or fresh as it would be if you were using another type of AC unit.

14. Ceiling Fans

A ceiling fan is a great way to cool your home without the need for any electricity or gas usage. They don’t cost much either and they’re pretty easy to install.

Pros of using ceiling fans:

– Ceiling fans are very affordable and easy to install. They just require electricity or gas usage!

– The air being circulated might not be as clean or fresh as it would be if you were using another type of AC unit, but they’re still pretty good at cooling your home.

Cons of using ceiling fans:

– Ceiling fans can only cool people and objects that are in the path of the fan blades. If you’re not close to the fan, you won’t feel very cool.

– Fans can actually make a room feel hotter if they’re used incorrectly or when it’s already hot outside.

15. Geothermal heating and cooling

Geothermal heating and cooling is among the most efficient and environmentally-friendly methods of cooling a home. The system works by using the natural heat emanating from the Earth to cool your home in summer and warm it in winter.

It is also possible to install a small geothermal unit that will provide heating and cooling for just one or two rooms in your house. If you are interested in geothermal heating and cooling, you should consult with a qualified contractor to find out if it is the right solution for you.

16. Solar air conditioning

Solar air conditioning units use solar panels to convert sunlight into electricity that powers an air conditioner. Solar air conditioning is a great choice for homes that are sunny year-round. If your home does not get a lot of direct sunlight, you may want to consider a solar air conditioning unit with an auxiliary heating system.

17. Green Roofs

A green roof is a roof that is covered with vegetation, such as grass, plants, or trees. Green roofs help keep your home cooler in summer and warmer in winter. They also help to reduce energy use and storm water runoff.

Pros of using green roofs:

Green roofs are great for the environment. They reduce carbon emissions, help to cool your home, and help prevent storm water runoff.

Cons of using green roofs:

It can take a long time for a green roof to be installed. It also requires regular maintenance. Green roofs are not recommended if you live in an area that gets snow.

A green roof may not be the right solution for your home if you live in an area that gets a lot of rain or snow. A green roof is more suitable for areas with hot, dry climates. Green roofs are also not recommended if you live in an area that has frequent heavy winds, such as hurricanes or tornadoes.

18. Hydronic Or Radiant Heating & Cooling

Hydronic or radiant heating and cooling is a system that uses water to heat or cool your home. Hydronic systems work by pumping hot or cold water through pipes in the walls, floors, and ceilings of your home. The water absorbs heat from the air inside your home then circulates it back into the room.

Pros of using hydronic or radiant heating and cooling:

Hydronic systems are energy-efficient, environmentally friendly, and quiet. They can also be used to heat water for your home’s hot water needs.

Cons of using hydronic or radiant heating and cooling:

Hydronic systems require a lot of maintenance; they need to be drained every few years to remove sediment and mineral buildup.

19. Insulation

If you have an older home, it may not be insulated at all or only partially. If this is the case, then installing insulation can help reduce your heating and cooling costs.

Insulation helps keep heat out during summer months and keeps heat in during winter months; it also helps block noise from outside sources.

Pros of using insulation:

Insulation is cost-effective and easy to install, especially if you have an older home. It also reduces your heating and cooling costs by blocking heat transfer between rooms or areas of the house.

Cons of using insulation

Insulating a home can be expensive, depending on how much needs to be done; it also requires regular maintenance in order to keep it effective.

20. Low-E Windows

Low-E windows are windows that have a coating of metal or other material on the glass that helps reflect heat away from your home in summer and keep the heat in during winter. Low-E windows are an excellent choice for homes that are located in hot, sunny climates.

Pros of using low-E windows:

Low-E windows are an excellent way to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. They also help reduce energy use and can be more affordable than installing a new air conditioning system.

Cons of using low-E windows:

Low-E windows may not be the right choice for homes that are located in cold, cloudy climates. They are also more expensive than regular windows.

21. Shade Trees & Shrubs

Trees and shrubs planted near your home can help reduce the temperature inside during summer months. This is because they provide shade and block sunlight from entering through windows or doors; they also trap heat in winter by blocking cold winds from blowing into your home.

Pros of using shade trees and shrubs:

Trees and shrubs are cost-effective, easy to plant, and require little maintenance. They also help reduce energy use by blocking sunlight from entering your home in summer months or trapping heat during winter months.

Cons of using shade trees and shrubs

Trees and shrubs can be messy and may require regular trimming; they can also be a safety hazard if they are close to windows or doors.

22. Window Film

Window film is a thin, plastic film that is installed on the inside of your home’s windows. It helps reflect heat away from your home in summer and keep the heat in during winter. Window film is an excellent choice for homes that are located in hot, sunny climates.

Pros of using window film

Window film is a cost-effective way to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It also helps reduce energy use by reflecting heat away from your windows.

Cons of using window film

Window film can be expensive, depending on how much needs to be done; it also requires regular maintenance in order to keep it effective.

23. Shutters

Shutters are a type of window coverings that can help block sunlight from entering your home in summer and trap heat inside during winter months. They are an excellent choice for homes located near the equator because they offer more protection from the sun than regular window coverings.

Pros of using shutters

Shutters are a cost-effective way to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. They also help reduce energy use by blocking sunlight from entering your windows.

Cons of using shutters

Shutters can be expensive, depending on how much needs to be done; they also require regular maintenance in order to keep them effective.

24. Natural Air Circulation

One of the best ways to keep your home cool during summer months is to use natural air circulation. This can be done by opening windows and doors to allow air to flow through your home, or by using fans to circulate the air.

Pros of using natural air circulation

Natural air circulation is free and easy to use; it also helps reduce energy use by cooling your home naturally.

Cons of using natural air circulation

Natural air circulation can be uncomfortable during hot, humid weather; it also does not work well in cold climates.

25. Portable air conditioners

A portable air conditioner is a self-contained unit that is designed to cool only one room in your home. It can be moved from place to place, making it an ideal solution for people who live in apartments or other small spaces where there isn’t enough room for central air conditioning.

Pros of using portable air conditioners

Portable air conditioners are a cost-effective way to cool one room in your home; they also don’t require any installation.

Cons of using portable air conditioners

Portable air conditioners can be expensive, depending on the size and type you buy; they also require regular maintenance in order to keep them running effectively.

Related: 10 Popular Types Of Home Air Conditioners (Buying Guide)

26. Radiant Heat Barriers

Radiant heat barriers are materials that can be installed in your attic to help block the flow of heat from the sun. They work by reflecting the sun’s rays back into space, preventing them from entering your home and warming up the attic.

Pros of using radiant heat barriers

Radiant heat barriers are a cost-effective way to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. They also help reduce energy use by blocking heat from the sun.

Cons of using radiant heat barriers

Radiant heat barriers can be expensive, depending on how much needs to be done; they also require regular maintenance in order to keep them effective.

27. Room fans

Room fans are a type of fan that is designed to cool one room in your home. They can be placed on the floor or mounted on the wall, and they come in a variety of sizes to suit different rooms.

Pros of using room fans

Room fans are a cost-effective way to cool down one room in your home; they also don’t require any installation.

Cons of using room fans

Room fans can be expensive, depending on the size and type you buy; they also require regular maintenance in order to keep them running effectively.

28. Thermal Curtains

Thermal curtains are a type of window coverings that can help block sunlight from entering your home in summer and trap heat inside during winter months.

Pros of using thermal curtains:

• Blocking sunlight from entering into your home during summer months.

Cons of using thermal curtains:

• Can only be used in the rooms where they are hung.

Related: Do Thermal Curtains Work In Summer? [Pros and Cons]

29. Ceiling Fans

A ceiling fan is a device that uses electricity to create an airflow through your home by spinning blades or paddles around at high speed. Ceiling fans can help circulate cool air around your home when the weather is hot, and also help to create a breeze that will make you feel cooler.

Pros of using ceiling fans:

• Can be used in any room of your house.

• Can help circulate cool air around your home.

Cons of using ceiling fans:

• Will not actually cool down the air in a room.

30. Wall Vines

Wall vines are a type of plant that can be used to cover up exterior walls of your home. Wall vines can help keep your home cooler in the summer by blocking sunlight from entering and trapping heat inside.

Pros of using wall vines:

• Can help block sunlight from entering into your home.

• Can trap heat inside of your home during winter months.

Cons of using wall vines:

• Might not be able to cover large walls or high ceilings.

• Can only be used on exterior walls, so cannot be used in rooms without windows (for example bathrooms).

31. Whole house fans

A whole house fan is a type of fan that can be installed in your ceiling and used to cool down your home by drawing air in through the windows and exhausting it out through the roof.

Pros of using whole house fans:

• Can help cool down your entire home.

Cons of using whole house fans:

• Can only be used when the weather is hot.

• Requires opening windows and doors in your home, which can let in insects or other pests.

32. Window Air Conditioners

Window air conditioners are a great option if you only need to cool one or two rooms in your house. Window air conditioners can be plugged into an electrical outlet or installed through a window opening. They come in a variety of sizes, so you can find the perfect unit for your needs.

Pros of using window air conditioners:

• Can be installed in any room with a window opening large enough to fit them (typically 12-24 inches).

Cons of using window air conditioners:

• Will not cool down the entire house, only rooms where they are installed.

Conclusion

With a little planning and some simple steps, you can improve your home’s comfort level. One of the best ways to do this is by installing a whole-house fan. A whole house fan uses your existing heating or air conditioning system as its power source and provides efficient cooling throughout your entire residence.

These fans are also relatively inexpensive for such an effective solution! Air conditioners may be more common than ever before but there are still plenty of alternatives that will help keep you cool without breaking the bank. Be sure to check out our blog post “Alternatives To Central Air Conditioning” if you’re interested