(The following is a guest post from our friends at Elmer’s One Hour Air in San Antonio, Texas. Enjoy!)
No matter if you’re in California or Texas, summer is a fabulous time filled with beaches, outdoor activities and relaxation (if you’re lucky. Before you go wild, throwing on some short shorts and switching to iced coffee, you have to get yourself in a summer state of mind. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
Protect Your Skin
Warmer weather means plenty of time spent outdoors. Whether you’re out on a sports field or simply sunbathing, it’s important to keep your skin safe from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Sunscreen is the obvious solution to this problem, especially if you’ll be spending several hours in direct sunlight. Apply liberally and remember to reapply after activities like swimming. If you’re only out for a short time, or have a nice shady spot to enjoy the day, you still shouldn’t neglect your SPF. Lotions, face moisturizers and even certain cosmetics are available with levels of SPF. It’s always a good idea to protect your skin, even if you don’t think you’ll be out in the sun too much.
Drink More Water
Your body needs water to function. When the temperature rises, your body loses liquids at a much faster rate through sweat and exhaling. It’s important to hydrate before, during and after any outdoor activities. You don’t have to be playing sports to need extra water. Even if you’re just going for a day of shopping at an outdoor mall you should be sure to get plenty of fluids. If your body overheats, you can experience heat exhaustion or even heat stroke. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is an average of 175 heat-related deaths each year.
Sometimes the only way to beat the heat is to stay indoors. Before the thermostat is reading ‘fry-an-egg-on-your-sidewalk’ hot, make sure your home is ready to keep you cool! If you reverse your ceiling fan’s direction in the winter for warm air circulation, don’t forget to switch it back. Your fan should be rotating counter-clockwise in the summer (blowing air down) for optimal room cooling.
Don’t Forget to Keep Up with HVAC Maintenance!
A failing air conditioner can quickly turn your cool haven into a sauna. Springtime is a great time to have a summer tune-up performed on your air conditioner. A technician will inspect and make any necessary corrections to your system to make sure it is in top shape for the hot months ahead. To keep your energy bill from skyrocketing along with the temperature, follow the Department of Energy’s advice and set your thermostat to a higher temperature when you aren’t home or don’t need cooling. The recommended temperature for cooling is 78 degrees in the summer. If that seems a bit high, turn on your ceiling fan and adjust what you’re wearing to cool down.
In many parts of the United States, summer heat is no joke. While you defrost this spring, don’t forget to take care of your health and home in preparation for the sweltering days to come. Drink plenty of water, slather on that sunscreen and, when it’s just too hot, stay safe and cool indoors.
(You can visit Elmer’s One Hour Air by visiting http://www.onehourairsanantonio.com.)