There’s nothing quite like setting up your outdoor living space for a long season of al fresco dining and time spent with friends and family out in the sun. Unfortunately, if you’re not prepared for a hot summer, you could find yourself forced indoors without a way to keep guests cool outside.
And that would be a shame: running an ac unit inside is fine when you need it, but it just doesn’t compare to sitting out on your patio under the stars whenever you like.
Cooling a patio or other outdoor space doesn’t have to be hard. There are several ways to make sure your loved ones stay comfortable all season long, even when you’re outside together. Try these four patio cooling ideas to keep hot weather at bay.
With the weather warming up, there’s nothing like setting up your outdoor living space for a long season of al fresco dining and time spent with friends and family out in the sun. Unfortunately, if you’re not prepared for a hot summer, you could find yourself forced indoors without a way to keep guests cool outside. And that would be a shame: Running an a/c unit inside is fine when you need it, but it just doesn’t compare to sitting out on your patio under the stars whenever you like.
Cooling a patio or other outdoor space doesn’t have to be hard, though. There are several ways to make sure your loved ones stay comfortable all season long, even when you’re outside together. Try these patio cooling ideas to keep hot air at bay.
1. Patio Misting Systems
Mist fans are a great option that make this technology more flexible and affordable. Outdoor misting fans are typically large floor fans that have several mist jets included so that the fan disperses water along with its airflow.
NewAir Portable Mist Fan. Photo taken by @alannah.kent
The process gives you cool air—even outside when the water in the area evaporates and lowers the ambient temperature. In addition to being less expensive, a good misting fan allows you to aim the cool refreshing breeze where you want it and adjust the fan speed. Easily connect a misting fan to your garden hose as a water source instead of requiring permanent plumbing or get a portable misting fan with a water tank to control how much water you actually end up using.
Though this cooling option works best in arid climates, it’s an affordable cooling option for East Coast residents to try as well. Here, summer heat often comes with high humidity levels, and on these days, you can turn off the fine mist function and just rely on the fan to stay cool.
Relate Post: The Best Outdoor Misting Fan: How to Pick Yours
2. Portable Evaporative Coolers
Like misting fans, evaporative coolers — also known as swamp coolers — battle high temperatures with the power of evaporation. Rather than pressurizing water like a mist cooling system, an evaporative cooler allows water to dissipate passively to create more refreshing air. Water is absorbed into cooling pads with a very large surface area, which increases the amount of evaporation occurring all at once. Most portable evaporative coolers have a built-in fan to help distribute cool air as well.
NewAir Evaporative Cooler. Photo taken by @realmklibrary
Because evaporative coolers use only enough electricity to run to run the fan to get the job done, they’re a great choice for open spaces. They don’t function like traditional air conditioners that are always drawing electricity to force air across the condenser coils, so you can run it constantly for a fraction of the cost of Freon-based air conditioning systems.
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3. High-Velocity Fans
Unlike portable air conditioners, evaporative coolers and portable mist fans, a high-velocity fan doesn’t actually lower the temperature in your outdoor entertaining space. Instead, it works to fool your body into feeling colder. This works due to the wind chill effect: The cool breeze from the fan brushes your skin and speeds up the evaporation of your natural perspiration. This, in turn, helps lower your body temperature.
NewAir High-Velocity Fan
Like all cooling that results from evaporation, an outdoor misting fan works best on dry days — but it also doesn’t add any humidity to your immediate patio area, making it a good choice for any climate.
4. Upgrade Your Furniture
If your feet are scalded by hot patio pavers, try adding an outdoor rug to protect your tootsies. These are a great way to provide a grounding focal point for your patio to make it feel more like a bona fide outdoor room, and light colors will reflect the sun’s rays instead of absorbing the feet, making it much more comfortable to kick off your shoes and relax.
NewAir Portable Mist Fan. Photo taken by @alannah.kent
If you find your furniture uncomfortably hot to sit on, you may be able to get some relief from new cushions. Look for natural canvas fibers in light colors that will reflect the sun and provide natural moisture wicking. Synthetics or fabrics coated with a plastic, water-repellent layer will trap your body heat and make you feel sticky and miserable, so shop around for a replacement that feels better on the skin.
Where to Buy the Best Misting Fan
Appliances like portable misting fans with water tanks or hose hookups, swamp coolers, and larger high-velocity fans can bring down the temperature of your outdoor patio space by significant degrees. With a little experimentation, you’re sure to find what works best for your home, and you’ll be outside enjoying your patio more often than ever.