Survive the Summer With These 8 Tips
While most people look forward to the warmth summer brings, you may be likely dreading the season. California already experiences warm weather. But summers can turn brutal and dry in an instant. You don’t have to suffer through the heat, though. With the guide below, you can survive summer — and even enjoy the season a little too.
1. Service or Replace Your Air Conditioner
An HVAC professional can determine if any parts of your system need to be replaced or if the system just needs a quick tune-up. If your cooling system has released its last puff of cool air, an HVAC expert can also recommend an AC unit upgrade.
You should also have your whole HVAC system checked. If one component isn’t working right or is clogged — like the vents — your AC unit can’t work properly.
2. Use Cotton Sheets
Unlike polyester, flannel, and satin fabrics, cotton is breathable and helps you stay cooler while you sleep. If swapping out your usual sheets for cotton ones isn’t enough to cool you down, don’t worry. You can also stick a water bottle in the freezer and then place the frozen bottle at the foot of your bed and under your flat sheet to help you stay cooler.
3. Stay Hydrated
Drinking water expands your blood vessels to help more blood circulate throughout your body. However, staying hydrated actually helps regulate your body temperature instead of making you warmer. If you’re dehydrated, your body needs to stay hotter to allow your vessels to expand so blood can flow easily.
4. Add Blackout Curtains
Even if you run your air conditioner at home, you may still want to cool down your interior even more. Hang blackout curtains or blinds throughout your home — especially in rooms with east- and west-facing windows — to block out excess sunlight and heat. Doing so also prevents your AC unit from overworking, which can lower your utility bill.
5. Cook Outside Often
To avoid overheating your house, cook outside during the summer. Use a grill or smoker to prepare meals as much as possible. If you don’t have either of these appliances or need to cook inside, use a slow cooker or electric pressure cooker so your house doesn’t heat up more than necessary.
Also, adjust the foods you eat. Peppers, for example, cool your body down by making you sweat — as the moisture dries, your body temperature decreases. You should also avoid fatty foods because they make your body work harder to digest them, and you get hotter as a result.
6. Stock Up on Aloe Vera
Aloe contains natural cooling properties. People typically use this plant to treat sunburns, but aloe is good for so much more. Mix pure aloe vera gel with peppermint oil and witch hazel to create a cooling spray that you can mist over yourself as needed.
7. Go for a Swim
Even though swimming may be relaxing, it’s still exercise and opens up your vessels to regulate your body temperature. When you step out of a pool, the layer of water on your skin works similarly to sweat and cools your body as it dries.
8. Create a Cross-Breeze in Your Car
Almost nothing is more uncomfortable than sitting in an oven-hot car in the middle of summer. Before going for a drive, create a cross-breeze to quickly cool down your car down. Roll down a window, and then open and close the door opposite the window a few times. Once your vehicle is cool enough to sit in comfortably, turn on the air conditioning.
Summer shouldn’t be dreaded. And with the above tips in your arsenal, you can actually enjoy the weather and do more of the things you love without getting overheated. If you need help with your HVAC system, contact JR Putman Plumbing, Heating and Air.