9. Don’t cook hot food inside
There is a reason our ancestors built summer kitchens: those stoves put out a lot of heat and you didn’t want them in your house in summer. Outside summer kitchens are all the rage in the luxury house/McMansion set as well. It really makes no sense to run a stove inside, just to then spend money to run air conditioning to remove the heat again. So get a gas barbecue and grill your vegetables, take advantage of farmers’ markets to get fresh stuff, and eat lots of salad.
(More on Summer Kitchens: WWOO Outdoor Kitchen Is Truly A Wow!)
10. Make the Right Choices
John’s graph from the Florida Solar Energy Center says it all. When the weatherization contractors come to get you to insulate your house (the most expensive thing you can do to save energy), you can show them that this makes no sense, as only 7% of the cooling load is coming through the walls. A couple of hours with a caulking gun to reduce infiltration would do more.
When they tell you that you need to install expensive new low-e tinted windows, remember that an awning or a shutter is more sophisticated and flexible: you have the choice whether to let the sun in or not.
Tape up your ducts, turn off your computers and save your money. The simple, low-tech tried and true methods cost less, save more energy and work forever.