The air conditioner...how I love it.  Hot flashes are no match for an air conditioner. Keeping the house cool also comes at a price. Try these tips to see if you can keep the air conditioners turned off, and put money back in your pocket.

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CLOSE YOUR WINDOWS

Close the windows? What?! On hot summer days, opening the windows will make your home warmer, not cooler. At night, IF the air outside is cooler than inside, then open windows wide, especially those that allow wind to flow through your home. During the daytime, make sure you have windows closed, as well as curtains, blinds and shades before the sun hits your home in the morning. If you have houseplants, put them in front of sunny windows to absorb some of the sun's hot rays.

THE FAN

Ahhh...The fan. There is a difference in them. Ceiling fans are used to cool people down, not homes. So when everyone is gone, keep the ceiling fans off. Stand-alone fans are amazing. Whether they are a desk fan for work, or a tall fan you can use in your bathroom as your putting on your make up, you can also use a spray bottle of water in front of a fan to cool yourself even more.

EATING COLD FOOD

This sounds funny...but eating cold foods, can help keep your internal temperature lower on hot days. Try a grilled chicken salad, or a chicken salad sandwich....a cold fruit dish. Keeping your stove and microwave off will also keep your home cooler.

SHUT OFF THE LIGHTS

My kids favorite words...shut the lights off! But it's true. Light bulbs can produce just as much heat as outdoor light. The same goes for electronics. If you're not using them, keep them unplugged or completely turned off. Sometimes even in standby mode, those devices can remain warm.

TAKE A COLD SHOWER

A cold shower...a swim in the pool...cold water or ice cubes dabbed on your wrists. All of these activities will help you lower your core temperature.

INSULATE YOUR ATTIC

Attics that are not well insulated can really hurt your electric bill. Even though it might seem expensive now, over the years, a well insulated home will save you hundreds if not thousands on your electric bill over time.

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