Another heat wave is here! I’m guessing this will become more regular as time goes on, so here are a few quick tips to help you stay cool!
1. Change (or clean, if reusable) your HVAC air filter(s). A clogged or dirty filter reduces air flow and can force the system to work harder, causing unnecessary wear.
2. Close your curtains/shades starting early in the morning to reduce solar gain. If you don’t have curtains/shades, use blankets or towels. This will help even if you have blinds because the gaps between the blinds allow heat to enter the living space.
3. Set your thermostat at a reasonable temperature. In reality, a cooling system can only cool to about 20 degrees below the exterior temperature… so, with 100+ temperatures in Portland’s forecast, setting your thermostat at 80-85 later in the day is ideal. Setting the thermostat lower than that causes the system to work harder for no additional results, wasting energy and $$!
4. If you don’t have A/C, consider staying with a friend or at a hotel (preferably a hotel with a pool 😊). Or find a cooling center. Free rides to cooling centers are available by calling 211.
5. Remember: Fans cool PEOPLE, not rooms. When you’re not in a room, turn the fan off! At night (if it cools down enough), open windows on opposing sides of the home and set up fans to cross-ventilate by bringing in cooler air from outside and pushing it through the home to the windows at the other side.
6. Drink lots of water! Hydrated bodies sweat, which is your body’s natural way of cooling itself!