How To Cool A Tent Without Electricity

Camping in the great outdoors is a wonderful way to enjoy the warmer months or to get closer to nature. However one of the more difficult aspects of camping can be learning how to have a cool tent to sleep in at night.

Most people have become used to all the benefits of technology including having air-conditioned living spaces, using fans or just sleeping in rooms that are cooler than the outdoors especially cooler than the outdoors were at the peak afternoon sun.

However, when camping the sun is beating down on your tent all day long which can make the inside feel like a furnace. Today we are going to learn some great ways on how to cool your tent without electricity.

  • Pitch Your Tent At Night​.
  • Choose a Lighter Colored Tent.
  • Set Up Your Tent in The Shadiest Area Of The Campsite.
  • Use Tree Cover.
  • Use A Tarp.
  • Keep The Tent Open.
  • Use a Larger Tent.
  • Place a Blanket Under Your Tent.
  • Invest in a Battery Operated Fan.
  • Cool Yourself Down.

Pitch Your Tent At Night

tent being set up at night

The first idea is to simply pitch your tent at night and break it down during the day. There are many reasons tents can get warm on the inside, but one of the most common is that your tent is getting direct sunlight throughout the day. The sunlight is warming up the tent and it keeps it warm.

If you only set up your tent at night and break it down during the day it will be considerably cooler on the inside making comfortable sleep and other activities much more attainable.

If you are not an experienced camper or you have a new tent this option may not be the best for you. To set up a tent at night you will need to be familiar with the process.

Of course, a viable solution to this would be to simply practice setting up the tent a few times before going camping. If you want to practice you should start by mastering the skill in the sunlight, but one mastered do it a few times at night as well.

You do not want to end up frustrated and stressed out when it comes time to pitch your tent.

Choose a Lighter Colored Tent

Another simple way to lessen the amount of heat build-up is to choose a lighter color of the tent to sleep in. Although this can work, it does have its drawbacks. Many people choose a dark-colored tent such as dark blue or black because this allows them to sleep longer.

It is possible that if you choose a light color you may wake up much earlier because although the tent will not heat up as quickly or retain as much heat, the sunlight will come through much brighter.

When deciding if a lighter color is a good option you will want to think about why you are camping and when you want your day to start. If you plan to stay up late sitting around a campfire and plan to sleep in this could not be a great choice for you.

However, if you are planning on getting up with the crack of dawn, watching the sunset or going hiking or exploring the color of the tent will not hurt your experience.

Set Up Your Tent in The Shadiest Area Of The Campsite

shady place in campground

Choosing your spot to pitch your tent can be a very important decision. There are many factors you should consider when choosing where you will sleep at night.

One of those factors will be the amount of direct sunlight you are letting in. It is a good idea to look for a spot that is as shady as possible.

When looking for a nice and shady location you might want to consider other things as well. Regardless of how shady the area is it still needs to be flat. You need to be able to sleep at night. Yes, the cooler the better, but if the ground is too uneven that you can not get comfortable you will just be exchanging one problem for another.

So what other factors should you consider? What you consider depends on who you are with sometimes. For instance, some campsites have play areas for children.

If yours does and you have children you may want to set up camp close by. If you do not have children you will want to be further away.

You will want to find the soft ground and search the area for any pitfalls such as stones, bricks or sticks. Finally, you will want to think about natural water sources. If there are any close by the rain will need to drain into them.

Look to see how the water is most likely to drain and be sure to avoid those areas even if you have a waterproof tent.

Use Tree Cover

Another way to avoid direct sunlight is to use tree cover to your advantage. Look at all the possible places you could camp for the night and see how the sunlight hits the ground.

The more tree cover you find, the more you are going to be able to use the branches and leaves to deflect the majority of the direct sunlight from hitting your tent.

Use A Tarp

When you are camping in a wooded area or just with a few trees to the sides or behind for coverage you can also use these trees to secure a tarp over your tent.

When using a tarp to cover your tent the tarp will absorb the direct sunlight and heat allowing your tent to remain cool and comfortable.

The tarp could have other benefits. For instance, a tarp that is hanging over your tent and to the sides can block any direct wind or at least lessen its impact.

A tarp will also protect you from any rain hitting the tent directly. Even if your tent is waterproof, any amounts of direct water or direct sunlight will lessen the life of the tent itself.

Keep The Tent Open

Open tent

Another way to keep your tent cool is to keep the tent open. You can keep the tent unzipped the whole time or at least during the day to allow airflow to enter the tent.

This will also allow the tent to not feel as superheated or as warm and stale as it would if the sun was beating down on it all day with it closed up tight.

Use a Larger Tent

If your budget and camping space allows it, use a larger tent. The larger the tent is, the longer it will take to heat up. The best option would be one of those multiple room tents that also have mesh windows.

The large size will decrease the amount of overall heat you feel inside and the mesh windows will allow a good amount of airflow to enter, cooling the tent down naturally during your stay.

Place a Blanket Under Your Tent

When the sun hits the ground, the ground heats up and retains heat. When you place an item over the ground, like a tent, the hear from the ground radiates up. Since the tent has a ceiling, the heat is trapped inside.

If you want a cheap solution to this problem, you can bring a blanket or two with you to place under the tent. When the ground heats up instead of transferring the heat to the entire tent it will transfer the heat to the blanket.

Invest in a Battery Operated Fan

Although you may not have access to electricity while you are camping, you can still use battery-operated tools to help you out. One of the tools that you might want to look into is a battery-operated fan.

As discussed, there are many different ways to naturally cool your tent down without electricity. However, sometimes these tips and tricks just might not work for you.

For instance, if you are going camping in a very open area you might not be able to find a shady spot or tree cover. It might not be in your budget to get a light-colored tent or a bigger one. Sometimes the tent you are using is not even yours. If some of the more natural tips and tricks are not working you might want to use technology to your advantage.

You can use a battery-operated fan – either a personal handheld one for yourself or a larger model to cool down the entire tent. The type of fan you need along with how long you need it to last can determine how much it costs.

You can find Battery-Operated Fans for as cheap as $10.00 or upwards of $100.00. Some of these fans can be going full speed for 72 hours without changing the batteries.

Cool Yourself Down

small kid bathing in cold water

Finally, you can also work on ways to cool yourself down. One of the easiest things you can do is bring light-colored clothes to sleep in (as well as being outdoors in during the day) instead of dark-colored clothes.Dark colors will attract heat faster and retain heat longer.

Another possible idea is what you are sleeping with. Most people bring sleeping bags camping. Sleeping bags are made to retain heat. If you are already warm you could use it as a blanket instead of climbing inside or choose to only cover yourself with a sheet.

Before bed you could shower (if facilities are available), allowing to cool off right before entering your tent. Make sure to also drink plenty of cold water throughout the day. You can pack a cooler with cold water and take what you need as the day and night.

Conclusion: How To Cool A Tent Without Electricity

There are many other tips & tricks someone may use to keep the tent and himself cool when camping. If you have any other secrets on how to cool a tent without electricity, make sure to leave them down below.