Best Backyard Hacks for Those Hot Summer Months
This summer, red and orange cover U.S. forecast maps due to the unusually high temperatures that are widespread across the country. The Climate Prediction Center forecasts that every state, from Alaska to Florida and California to Vermont will see above-average temperatures for the next few months.
Don’t let Mother Nature stop you from enjoying the outdoors as summerlike temps extend into September and October. Hack your backyard to keep your family and friends outside and not running for the a/c.
Find Cover by Adding Shade
Add a shady spot to your backyard to cool you down by up to 20 degrees. So, when it’s 90 degrees in October, it will feel like 70, and we can deal with that. Whether you come up with temporary cover or implement a permanent solution for shade, look into the following options:
Shady trees: If you have a green thumb and are looking for shade relief, consider planting some trees in the areas you plan to dwell. This natural option to your shade dilemma offers a low-maintenance alternative that brightens up your yard, as well.
Gazebo: Put your skills to work and build a free-standing open-sided structure with a solid floor and roof. Build a gazebo from scratch if you have excellent carpentry skills or purchase a kit for a little assistance.
Umbrellas: If you’re on a budget and need quick relief, look into purchasing a patio umbrella. There are a wide variety of styles that include: standard pole, tilt and cantilever umbrellas. Frame construction ranges from wood to aluminum to fiberglass. Umbrellas are especially good for entertaining, thanks to popular add-ons like speakers, lights and different canopy shapes.
Shade sails: Another affordable quick fix, suspended shade sails are sturdy and resistant to UV rays. Like patio umbrellas, they can add a touch of style to your backyard by covering pools, barbecues areas or seating areas.
Awning: An awning is a sizable investment but a sturdy way to get summer heat relief. Choose a retractable variety so you can breathe easy that it won’t be damaged when a storm comes rolling through.
Create a Cool-Down Zone
Create a shady place that allows you, your family and guests to relax without sweltering. Whether you decide on a café-style seating area in a cozy section of your yard, a lounge area near the pool or a dining table set under a patio or overhang, consider these options to create a cool-down zone:
- Mount a misting system around the perimeter of your patio, deck or seating area. Small tubes release a fine mist that absorbs heat and can cool you down by 20 degrees. The system connects to your garden hose and provides a quick and efficient way to cool off.
- Install a ceiling fan if you choose a covered patio to be your cool down zone. Be sure you have an electrical outlet and a roof sturdy enough to hang a fan.
- Add a running water feature for 10 degrees of heat relief. Be sure to properly maintain the fountain or pond to reap the cooling benefits.
- Cover it up with one of the above mentioned shade solutions.
Build an Outdoor Shower
Not only can an outdoor shower cool you off in the hot summer months, but it can help water your yard, so it’s a win-win. Build your own by using a garden hose as the water source or have a plumber get you started by tapping into your home’s piping system. Either way, an outdoor shower is a good weekend DIY project that will keep your family and friends cool for years to come.
Don’t sweat the summer months. Implement one, two or all of these backyard hacks.