National Heat Awareness Month: Prepare Your Home & Health
If you’ve walked outside in Louisiana recently, then it will come as no surprise that summer has arrived and in full force! You know what that means! Beaches, pool days, and barbecues! Unfortunately, a Louisiana summer also means sun burns, heat exhaustion, and high air conditioning bills.
To get you prepared for battling everything the heat has to throw at you, here are some tips to keep you, your loved ones, and your home safe and cool.
Preventing Heat Illness
- Obviously…HYDRATE! Don’t just drink when you are thirsty or while you’re outside. Also avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol.
- Wear appropriate clothing. If you are spending time outdoors, wear something loose and light. Avoid darker colors because these absorb the heat from the sun more than lighter colors.
- Be aware of peak heat hours. The hours between 11am and 6pm are the hottest parts of the day. If you have to be outdoors for extended periods of time during these hours, be prepared.
- Take breaks. For those who work outside, make sure you are taking frequent breaks in a space out of the sun where you can hydrate every 30-60 minutes.
- Look out for others. Keep an eye on others near you and make sure they are taking care of themselves.
Cost-Effective Ways of Keeping Your Home Cool
- Keep blinds closed. You can save up to 7% on your bills and lower temperatures by up to 20 degrees by keeping blinds closed during the peak heat hours.
- Close doors to unused rooms. By doing this, you will prevent the cool air from going into these empty spaces during the hottest parts of the day.
- Swap your sheets. While flannel sheets and fleece blankets are great for insulating you during the winter months, cotton breathes a lot easier and stays cooler during the summer months.
- Set your ceiling fans to rotate counter-clockwise. The fan’s airflow will create a wind-chill breeze effect.
- Grill outside more! Did you really need another excuse to break the grill out? Cooking inside increases interior temperatures so by grilling outdoors more you save to battling rising interior temperatures.