Perhaps that was my second camping trip when I felt super hot in the tent. The campsite had no electric facilities and at that time I hadn’t any idea about how to cool a tent without electricity. At that time, I was so disappointed and in an unbearable condition that it seemed to me it would be my last camping. Camping in summer is an awesome idea but it can ruin your whole journey if you don’t know how to deal with hot weather.

As prevention is far better than recovery, so this article from TravelersDoor will guide you about keeping the tent cool without electricity before you leave for camping. 

a light color tent under threes means cooling a tent without electricity

Why Do Tents Get So Hot?

Before knowing the solution, Isn’t it appeared in your mind “Why do tents so hot?” To solve the problem, first, it’s important to know the reasons for the problem.

Well, let’s look forward to the answer to the problems.

Practically many reasonable factors are responsible for creating the tent so hot. But from my experience and research, I can ensure you of two key factors that hold the maximum percentages to make the tent much warm.

The first one is “Sunlight”. In the day, sunlight directly hits your tent (if you set up your tent on the wrong side). The tent accepts the warm sunlight. As sunlight works like a mini-green house, the heat can’t come out from the tent. Carbon dioxide and water vapor both work together to stuck into the tent. And the result of those reasons brings a heating tent.

And the second one is the “Human Body”. Due to Sweat and respiration, 1.25 gallons of water vapor can be formed in one human body. And those vapors collect in the form of droplets on the wall of tents. Additionally, carbon dioxide from your breath and some others are also participating in the tent heating game. And thus your body plays the role of heating the tent.

For Winter Camping: How to insulate a tent

13 Smart Ways to Cool a Tent without Electricity

People go camping to relax in nature away from the so call mechanical life. So electrical device in camping doesn’t utilize their meaning.

If you ask me “Why you should know the ways of tent cooling?” Well, then I have two answers to tell you.

First, in case of the absence of electric facilities at your campsite or any error on electricity during your time.

And the second one is to save some amounts of money or light your backpack.

Alright, now it’s time to explore 13 smart ways how to cool a tent without electricity.

1. Choose the Perfect Tent

Tent selection is the primary vital way to cool a tent. The tent’s material, color, shape, etc determines how cool your tent would be.

In terms of tent materials canvas is the top one to maintain heat. But it is quite expensive and heavy, usually ideal for car camping. Another hand Nylon and Polyester, are cost-effective and lightweight. And best for controlling heat and is worthy to use.

From my experience, most time I saw that camper choose a black or dark blue or colorful tent. That’s not right. Pick a light color tent that works very well. Sometimes the light color of the tent seems not trendy to many ones. But trust me, your comfort is far away from a gorgeous tent looking.

And one thing, try to use lightweight and large tents. A large tent provides large headspace and allows for maintaining airflow. Also, the heat will be getting more space and ventilation way to keep cool.

2. Select the Location Properly

I suggest you research your camping area before leaving. From my first camping in Kentucky Horse Park, I did the research well. So,

Area selection is another important factor to stay cool. If your campsite is in an open space without trees or wildness and the sun direct hits on your tent then it would superheat.

So select the camp location that provides you with a lot of shade from trees or hills. Keep a far distance in front of sunlight.

Find an area where there’s plenty of wind. Riverside, waterfall, lakeside, etc are the best option and those act as a breeze and control the ventilator way. So, keep those in mind for location choices.

3. Set up the Tent at a Perfect Time

Another smart way to cool a tent is by setting it up the tent at the right time. 

Do you have any plans to sleep in a tent after just reaching the campsite? I don’t think so. Exploring the campsite and other activities can be the priority. But many people do the mistake of setting up the tent in the very beginning because of overexciting. That brings extra heat to your tent.

So wait for the sun. Before the sunset or at the time of sunset is the best time to set up a tent. Keep maintaining this tent placing time to protect it from heat.

Noted that other preparation like cleaning the tent area, wood collecting, tent preparing, etc should be done before the pitching time.

Related Read: How to Pack a Tent in a Backpack? (Easier Way)

4. Use a Reflective Space Blanket

It’s a very tricky way when you are in a place without natural shades like the beach. The sun direct hits the tent in those types of places and then nothing can stop the sun to heat your tent. To get rid of this situation-

Just place a space blanket on your tent and it automatically works for reflecting heat. Remember that if your blanket can’t cover up the whole tent, then the trick won’t work. Sometimes, the blanket on the tent is looking weird. 

Are you able to bear extreme heat just for stopping the weird tent from looking? That sounds not good to me.

So apply this cheap trick and protect the tent from heating. 

5. Hanging the Rainfly Over the Tent

Some people suggested removing the whole rainfly. But I don’t agree with that.

Rainfly stocks the way of ventilation in the tent. Another hand, it is also useful for rainy times, shading, or other small jobs. So what should you do? You have two options.

First, removed the rainfly (if privacy is not your concern). Then the ventilation process continues its job well and keeps the tent cool.

The last one is, hanging the rainfly or tarp just over your tent by tieing the rainfly with nearby trees or other objects. And the ventilation and getting shade both work properly in this way. So I recommended hanging the rainfly instead of completely removing it.

Related Read: What Size Tarp for Camping?

6. Place the Ice into Your Cooler

Most of the camper brought cooler-bearing foods or drinks. The cooler is a great way you can find to keep the tent cool.

Just placed the cooler with ice in your tent and open it. Then the ice starts melting. The heat of the ice reduces the temperature of the tent and gives a cool feeling.

Don’t do the mistake of melting all of your ice. Take some ice on a container inside your tent for other’s work uses.

7. Don’t Use the Sleeping Bag

As you are camping in hot weather, so it’s not wise to use a sleeping bag.

Keeping you warm is the key purpose of a sleeping bag. It makes you hot and doesn’t permit the heat to go out. So what’s the point to keep it during hot weather camping?

So maintain a far distance from using it.

8. Unzipped the Tent

Unzipping or keeping the tent open is another good way how to cool a tent without electricity.

Unzipping the tent, the air got the way of flowing into the tent. And for this, the heat becomes reduced and the tent can keep its coolness.

Most of the time, I opened the tent during the day and considered the night as the sunlight problem was absent then.

So, opening a tent is an easy option to cool your tent and is popular as the best way to keep cool in a tent without electricity.

A Unzipped Tent in A Campsite

9. Take an Advantage of Tree Cover

During my camping in the campgrounds near W. KY, I selected an area under the trees and a shaded place. But after setting up the tent, much sunlight was noticed.

So take the advantage of trees that cover the sunlight well and placed the tent in such a direction that you can protect it from direct sunlight hitting.

Remember, the more trees, the more chances to cover up your tent to keep cool. So that can be one of the best ways to stay cool in a tent.

10. Set up a Blanket under the Tent

If it is possible, then set up a blanket under your tent. As the sun hits the ground, it becomes heated and trapped inside. And that makes a heat impact on your tent.

If you will place a blanket under the tent, then the heat of the ground will be directly absorbed by your blanket, and then the heat fails to reach your tent.

11. Shut down the Tent in the Daylight

This is similar to what I explained previously about the best time to set up a tent during the day.

For those, who left for several days camping, this trick is applicable. The whole day, try to shut down your tent. During the day, the sunlight can warm your tent largely and hot weather would have existed in the tent.

In the daytime, you will mostly be busy with camping activities and rarely need to enter the tent. So it is far better to close your tent to take a long time comfort ness considering less pleasure.

12. Carrying a Battery-Based Fan

If you have budget enough then carry a battery-based fan with you.

It’s an easy way to keep you and your tent both cool. But practically, the fan doesn’t work as cool as naturally.

There is a hand-made way to get a more cold feeling. Placed the ice into a bucket and set up the fan in front of it. The wind of the fan and the ice both together can give super cool in the tent.

Related Read: 8 Best Battery Operated Fans for Camping

13. Maintaining Yourself

How can you maintain yourself to stop heating the tent? Doesn’t that seem weird? It may be.

Maintaining yourself can’t directly keep your tent cool but it has a good connection.

Some points that help you to stay cool.

  • Light colors and loose-fitting clothes are a must for hot-weather camping. Those have the power to keep you cool. During the day, use a hat or umbrella away from sun heat.
  • Don’t try to eat spicy food. It can make you feel hot. Better to have camping food without cooking.
  • And after all, drink a lot of water to avoid dehydration and stay fresh.

So, cooling yourself can cool your camping trip.

And above those are the smart camping hacks or ways how to keep a tent cool without electricity. Also worked for any kind of camping tips.

FAQs about “Tent Camping in Hot Weather

Q1. Is It Safe to Sleep in a Tent?

Yes, it’s safe. But there is a little bit of risk depending on your campsite than your home.  Nothing should be worried about. Just keep attention to your surroundings.

Q2. Can a Candle Able to Heat the Tent?

If your tent has a big space then it’s not a big deal. But if you are in a tiny tent and use more candles then it could be heated.

Q3. Is It Bad To Use a Black Tent?

Yes, a black tent is capable to produce heating facts. Try to use a light color tent.

Q4. Do the Crowd on the Campsite Increases Heat?

Maximum time, where there’s crowd camping, campfire, and other activities work to warm the place. As a result, your tent can be heated. If you are on festival camping then you should prepare yourself to bear the heat.

Q5. Is It Necessary to Take a Cooler?

It’s good to keep one. Because it can be needed for any purpose.

Q6. Is Hammock Better Than Tent in Hot Weather?

Though tent and hammock are totally different sorts of mediums to enjoy camping when it comes to staying cool obviously hammock will be the first choice.

In a hammock, one doesn’t need to think about ventilation, hard setup, the ideal time for installation, placing an ice box, using a ground blanket, and so on things that are a must on tent camping. Moreover, here you can keep the gear dry and safe nearby that doesn’t have an effect on heat production. Also, the camper can relax without worrying about the floor. In hammock camping, all you need is to select a suitable place, do a quick setup, place an upper tarp, and chill in a comfortable way with no weather headache.

So, I think in hot conditions a hammock won’t be the wrong choice.

Q7. Is It Possible to Camping Without Cooking?

Yeah, it’s very much possible. Many camping food ideas don’t require any cooking.

Q8. Should I Use a Tarp under My Tent?

To get rid of wet and ground heat, it is suggested to use a tarp under your tarp. That also works for how to cool a tent down.

Related Read: How to Keep Tarp from Flapping?


So finally, what stage are you in? Now, I think you don’t need to worry anymore about how to cool a tent without electricity. What areas you will go camping in or what will be the condition of the campsite and, just follow those tricky smart ways to cool down a hot tent and stay refreshed in the whole camp.

Categories: Camping

Noah Lam

Noah Lam, is passionate about outdoor recreations, bridging the gap between generations, and sharing his passion for hiking and camping. As an outdoor explorer, he has been to more than forty countries and hiked some of the most intangible trails in the world. His goal is to spread the endless benefits of being a camper and hiker, new challenges, always striving for better performance and ways to explore responsibly.