6 Ways to Keep your Apartment Cool During a Phoenix Summer

 This post is not sponsored and contains affiliate tracking links. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

NewAir evaporative cooler in the living room

This will be my 10th summer living in Phoenix this year. And that's not counting the years I spent a few weeks of summer was in college living [aka suffering] in the dorms with limited air conditioning. Over the last decade, I have learned what works to keep an apartment cool and what doesn't. Trust me, I've made plenty of mistakes and learned along the way. 

And for those who may not know this, summers in Phoenix can be both incredibly dry and also humid (our monsoon season in mid-summer brings lots of humidity and some rain). The hottest temperature I've lived in here was 120 degrees Fahrenheit. As far as the average temperature in the summer, in the daytime, temp is usually around 105-108 degrees F, and at night it's about 85-80 degrees F.

Today, we are sharing our tried-and-true ways to keep our home cool in the summer living in Phoenix.

woman closing the curtain

star and moon slippers on white sheets

#1 Blackout Curtains

This is especially crucial for any east or west-facing windows. But in Phoenix, it's better to have blackout curtains on all windows if you can. The summer sun is a cruel mistress and even if you're not getting direct sunlight on that window, the heat will creep in. 

We've found that adding blackout curtains to every window in our apartment has made a HUGE difference in keeping the heat out but also maintaining any cool temperatures we've created in our apartment through air conditioning, fans, and our NewAir Evaporative Air Cooler and Portable Cooling Fan

#2 Multiple airstreams

After moving multiple times and having lived in some rather decrepit apartments, Adam and I have learned the tough lesson that you can never rely on the air conditioner that comes with your unit. Even if they renovate your apartment for newer appliances, every time we discover that the air unit is from the late 80s or 90s and on its last legs (and landlords and leasing offices put their air unit at the very bottom of their list of items to replace). Learning that air conditioners are not the priority for apartment managers, we had to take it upon ourselves to cool our own apartment. This brings me to why it's key to have multiple airstreams in your apartment to keep it cool during the summer. 

Floor fans, standing fans, desk fans, and evaporative coolers throughout your apartments are absolutely necessary if you live in Phoenix. Especially if you live on a 2nd story or higher (which most of the time we do). Keep in mind, a lot of the floor, standing, and desk fans you'll find at stores like Amazon and Walmart will need to be replaced after a few years. But it's absolutely necessary to have multiple fans set up around your apartment to create airflow from room to room. 

#3 Get some moisture in the air

Dry heat can be excruciatingly insufferable. And even worse for my skin and allergies since I suffer from dry skin and eczema flare-ups. Adding some moisture back into the air makes all the difference in staying comfortable in the summer living in Phoenix. 

Over the years, Adam and I have always kept an evaporative cooler in our apartment. During the dry part of summer, we run it like an evaporative cooler. In the monsoon part of the summer (aka when Phoenix has some humidity), we run it like a regular fan. We've had a lot of luck with our NewAir evaporative coolers, and right now we are using the NewAir Evaporative Air Cooler and Portable Cooling Fan

Our NewAir Evaporative Air Cooler and Portable Cooling Fan works great to keep our apartment cool while adding just the right amount of humidity back into the air. My favorite feature is that it's lightweight and portable, so it travels with me throughout the day (in the daytime, I roll it into our home office and run it in there, and then at night, we roll it into our bedroom to keep it cool in there through the night). Within minutes of running it, there is a huge difference, and the temperature drops quickly. When we use it like an evaporative cooler (when the heat is at its driest), I open the removable water tank right from the back and refill it and add in freezer packs to keep the water cold. 

Save 10% on your NewAir Evaporative Cooler with the code "MINIFAMILY" at checkout!

#4 Drink room temperature water

Yes, this does make a difference. And I say room temperature because cold water will actually require your body to exude energy to warm the water up. When I learned this, I couldn't believe I hadn't thought about it before. But just think, since our ideal body temperature is about 98.6 degrees F, wouldn't our body naturally warm up any cold water that enters our body up to about 98.6? 

When our body has to exert that energy to warm the water up, our body is working harder and we don't want that when it's 120 degrees outside and we're trying to stay cool! 

I'm not a scientist or a physician by any means, but once I stopped drinking ice cold water in the summer and switched to room temperature water I felt like it was actually cooling me down. Was it as refreshing as an ice-cold glass of water? No. But, I do feel like I got hydrated and didn't feel the shock of the temperature difference of the cold water passing through my warm body (and then the shock of the temperature difference was just another reminder of how hot the weather is). 

#5 Switch your bedding to cotton or bamboo sheets

Ditch your microfiber and satin bedding when summer rolls around. The best bedding for hot, Phoenix summers is cotton or bamboo. I love our bamboo sheets from Cozy Earth, and they are perfect for the summertime! Bamboo is great for absorbing moisture so when we sweat while we sleep (and in the summertime that's inevitable), it will keep us feeling comfortable and cool through the night. 

Cotton is our next favorite type of bedding to use in the summer because it's lightweight and breathable, and can also help with absorbing moisture while we sweat. We really like these cotton sheets that we got from Amazon and they have lasted us a long time. 

Save 50% on your new Cozy Earth bamboo bedding with the code "OURMINIFAMILY50" at checkout at CozyEarth.com!

#6 Reduce your oven-cooking and switch to slow cooker meals

Running the oven during the middle of the day or early evening is probably the worst thing during the summer in Phoenix. I prefer slow cooker meals we can make and allow to cook all day long in our Hamilton Beach Programmable Slow Cooker, and then I prefer making no-bake desserts in the summer. 

Summer is the perfect time to make all of those slow cooker meals you've saved to your Pinterest boards and forgotten about until now! If you're looking for a few slow cooker recipes we love, here are a few that we've shared on the blog for you to try: 


Reducing the amount of cooking that needs you to run your oven will help keep your apartment cool during the summer. So whether you prefer cooking with your stovetop, slow cooker, or no heat at all, not turning your oven on will definitely keep your apartment cooler. 

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