Odds are, your house in Seattle doesn’t have air conditioning. Only 33.7% of Seattle-area households come equipped with A/C, far below the national average of 89%.
In fact, of the 41 metro areas included in the Census Bureau’s American Housing Survey, Seattle is dead last when it comes to air-conditioning. To truly take in how much hotter our houses feel than the rest of the country’s, the #3 lowest air-conditioned metro area is Portland, at 69.9%. Meanwhile, we’re sweltering with just 33.7%.
In heat like this summer’s, homeowners and renters alike need relief. It’s hot. It’s too hot. Here are some tips we’ve collected.
Air Conditioning Alternatives
• Open the windows at night, close them in the morning and draw and the shades. This will lock in cool air.
• Spritz the bed sheets with water and then let a fan blow over them.
• Run the dishwater early in the evening so the heat can vent out over night.
• Keep the refrigerator full, even if you just put in jugs of water. The larger the thermal mass, the less work (and heat) the fridge needs to do.
• Hose down the roof and exterior of your house after sundown to lower your house’s interior temperature “by a good 10 degrees.”
• Mist down the your driveway or apartment patio just after sunset.
And if you’re really desperate…
• Go for a swim, and keep wearing your damp swimsuit until bedtime.
• Lie on the hardwood floor with a wet towel over your stomach.
• Cover south and west facing windows with aluminum foil.
• Dip your clothes in water, put them in the freezer, and put them back on just before they get frozen and crusty.