Friday, June 27, 2014

DIY Air Conditioner - Cool Your House with 5 Items

It's summer. It's hot. And your house doesn't have Air Conditioning. The fan just isn't cutting it anymore and you just want to cool down. It's time to make your own air conditioner and CHEAP!


Materials List:

  • 5 gallon Bucket
  • Styrofoam bucket liner (You can purchase this from a store like Home Depot)
  • PVC pipe - 3 pieces of 1.5" pipe 
  • Small Fan
  • Ice
How To:
  1. Cut three circular holes in the 5 gallon bucket the size of the PVC pipe. We recommend using 2 1/4" hole saw.
  2. Insert the liner into the bucket.
  3. Use a 2 1/8" hole saw to cut holes in the liner where you previously cut holes in the bucket
  4. Insert the PVC pipe into the holes
  5. Cut a hole in both the lid of the buck and the liner slightly smaller than the fan.
  6. Place ice in the bucket, place fan on top, and enjoy the cool air!
For the ice we recommend  freezing two 1 gallon jugs of water. Each jug should last 5-6 hours. Once one jug melts, re-freeze, and replace the "Air Conditioner" with the alternate.

If you would like a visual, check out this video: Homemade Air Conditioner

We have also pinned a few other ideas on how to make your own Air Conditioner, check out IDT Energy on Pinterest!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

No Need to Break the Bank to Keep Cool this Summer

Here are a few easy-to-do tips to save some money on your electric bill this summer:
  • Save money and energy on your electric bill by turning off the air conditioner when you leave the house for a long time. If you don’t want to turn the whole unit off,  at least raise the temperature on the thermostat. Also, clean the ac’s filter. When the filter is dirty it forces the ac to work harder, wasting precious energy. 
  • Try not to leave the doors to your fridge open too long. All the cool air that escapes means just more cool air the refrigerator must create. Cool hot food down to room temperature before putting them in the fridge.
  • Use a microwave to heat food whenever possible. This wonderful appliance is much more efficient at heating food than an oven, and it has the added benefit of not heating up your house along with your food. And if the air conditioner is on, it just means less work for that other wonderful appliance.
  • Do up the windows with curtains. Keeping the sun’s rays out of your house can do a lot towards maintaining a bearable room temperature during the hot, summer months. If you can arrange it, plant some deciduous trees on the South and West sides of your abode. During the summer you get some beautiful, natural shade, and during the winter, when the leaves fall, the sun can shine in on your home. What a great, natural solution to keeping your home comfortable.
  • Take advantage of the warm sun’s rays to dry your clothes outside all summer. The sun is completely free when you use its energy directly. Watch out for rainy days, though.
Keeping cool during the summer without spending a fortune is possible with just a little bit of thoughtful energy-saving practices.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Rainy Day Summer Projects

Is the rain ruining your planned summer projects? Need something to keep the kids busy inside? IDT Energy has put together some fun projects!

Rain in a Jar

What better way to explain what is happening outside, then make it happen inside.

Supplies: Glass Jar, Hot Water, Plate, Ice Cubes and a Towel (clean up any accidental messes)
Time: 15 min

  1. Heat the water until it's almost boiling - pour it into the glass jar.
  2. Quick! Cover the jar with the plate.
  3. Place the ice cubes on the plate.
  4. Watch what happens!
The warm air from the hot water rises and mixes with the cool air created by the ice cubes. This causes condensation and then rain!

Crayon Rainbow

You're waiting for the rain to clear and the sun to come out, and a rainbow to appear. Make your own rainbow with crayons!

Via Pinterest

Supplies: Newspaper, canvas, hot glue gun (and glue stick), heat gun and lots of crayons. 
Time: 1 hour
  1. Lay the newspaper down to protect your craft space
  2. Sort out the crayons by color (likely avoiding greys, browns, and black)
  3. Line up the colors by shade next to the canvas. The crayons should fill the length of the canvas.
  4. Hot glue the crayons to the canvas, point down. Glue a small amount at a time. 
  5. Once all of the crayons are affixed, lean the canvas up against a support (with the newspaper underneath)
  6. Hold the heat gun about 12 inches from the canvas as the crayons begin to melt.
  7. Use the heat gun, as needed, to follow the melted crayon down the canvas to provide continuous lines. Work one section at a time. 
  8. After all of the crayons have melted, pick up the canvas and scrape off the bottom where there is excess crayon. 
  9. Hope a real rainbow comes out soon!
Check out more fun, energy related projects on IDT Energy's Pinterest

Thursday, June 12, 2014

5 Tips to Keep Your Body Cool in the Hot Summer

It's hot out. You want to keep cool, but you don't want to crank on/up the Air Conditioning. There is no pool in sight, but you need to cool down.

Here are 5 energy efficient tips to cooling down in the hot summer:

  1. Use cool water on  your pulse points (like your wrists). This can help bring your core temperature down as much as 3 degrees!
  2. Your body sweats to cool your down as the water vapor evaporates. Take advantage of your perspiration - stand in front of a cool breeze or a fan and cool down faster. 
  3. Go downstairs. It's simple - heat rises. If your home has a lower level or a basement the air will be less dense the further from the roof line.
  4. Mint refreshes the skin and leaves a cooling sensation. Use peppermint lotion or peppermint soap, but avoid your face and eyes.
  5. Take off your shoes and hat while indoors! Most of the body's heat is released through the palms of your hands, the scalp and the soles of the feet. If you have shoes or a hat on, there is no way for the heat to escape!
Check out IDT Energy for more ways to earn rewards and get cash back.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Beat the Humidity (On a Budget)

Spring is in the air and summer is almost here. Fun in the sun and outdoor activities are upon us. But with the heat comes the humidity.  Not everyone has air conditioning, or wants to spend the money of electric costs to keep it running. Here are a few tips on how to beat the humidity - on a budget.

  1. Skip the drying cycle on the dishwasher. Simply open the door and let it air dry.
  2. Wear light colored clothing with thinner fabrics - this will help sweat evaporate quickly, keeping you cooler. 
  3. Eating spicy food can help cool you. It contains a chemical called capsaicin, which helps us perspire more readily, and when the sweat evaporates we experience a moment of cool. 
  4. Drink water. Not only is it just plain good for you, it helps keep you cool. 
  5. Turn off the lights!