Over 9,000 Americans have lost their lives as a result of heat waves.
And while this number might not seem especially high, if it’s a member of your family or a loved one, those low numbers won’t matter at all.
Especially if you’re caring for elders or those with a lowered immune system, you need to know how to prepare for a heatwave.
That’s what this post is here to teach you.
In it, we’re covering all sorts of different heat wave safety tips.
From ensuring that your home is prepared before a heatwave hits to staying cool while you’re in the throes of one, read on to learn how to stay safe when it gets unbearably hot.
Check Your Home’s Walls and Insulation
Before heat waves even hit — preferably in the cooler months — you need to do an inspection of your home, its walls, and its overall insulation.
You want to be certain that cracks, water damage, and other issues won’t prevent your air conditioner from working properly. You also want to be certain that cool air isn’t filtering out through any cracks or holes.
This is especially key if you’ve dealt with flooding, water damage, or even smoke/fire damage within the past few months.
We strongly recommend making an appointment with one of our specialists. This way, you can identify all the possible issues, and ensure that your home’s insulation remains intact.
Finally, if you don’t yet have an air conditioning unit installed — or if it’s been a while since you’ve had yours serviced — now is the time to do so.
If you don’t have or cannot install air conditioning in your home, make sure that you study up on public spaces with AC. This way, you’ll always have a place to escape to when your home or apartment unit becomes too hot to handle.
Preparing for a Heat Wave
There are several heat wave precautions that you can take before the temperature starts to climb.
First of all, assemble a heat wave survival kit. You’ll need to make sure that your survival kit can help you to make it through a minimum of 48 hours of heat.
The first thing to stock up on?
During a heat wave, it’s recommended that people drink at least a gallon of water each day. If you’re pregnant, have a lowered immune system, or are older than 65, you’ll likely need to drink more.
Make sure you also buy a first aid kit, some moist towelettes, and as many bags of ice as your freezer can fit. We also suggest having some non-perishable food on hand.
This might sound bizarre at first, but believe it or not, heat waves can sometimes cause power outages. So, make sure that you grab a flashlight and fully charge your electronics, too.
Also, it’s a smart idea to check on elderly neighbors that live alone, and others that may need assistance during a heat wave.
Finally, always turn on the local news and the radio, so that you can stay informed about the heat index in your area.
Staying Cool During a Heat Wave
Now, let’s talk about how you can handle heat wave safety once the heat wave actually hits.
Make sure that you’re keeping your meals small and frequent, instead of three larger meals throughout the day.
Don’t participate in any outdoor sports activities, and skip your daily jog. Make sure that you wear clothing that’s light in color and as breathable as possible.
Above all, don’t go from one extreme temperature to another.
If you need to go outside for any reason during a heatwave (like to give a pet a bathroom break?), make sure that you spend a few minutes turning down the air conditioning in your home. This will help your body safely adjust to any changes in temperature.
We also suggest frequently texting your friends and family members, so that you can better ensure that everyone is staying safe and hydrated.
Big Cities and Heat Waves
A final aspect of heat wave safety that you need to be aware of?
Where you live — and the population density of your city — can impact the overall temperature and conditions you’ll experience.
Take a look outside.
Is your street covered in asphalt, and are you fairly close to the street? What about concrete, which stores heat and then slowly releases it for hours on end?
If so, you can expect to have to deal with higher temperatures.
The same goes if you live in a bigger city with higher pollution levels. Thanks to the poor air quality, the temperatures will also climb.
And if you live on the top floor of an apartment building? You should also prepare for extreme heat.
Evaluate your risk of heatstroke and more by knowing exactly where you stand ahead of time.
Need Help Preparing for Heat Waves?
We hope that this post has helped you to better understand that heat waves are absolutely something that should be taken seriously.
Make sure that you have enough water to last you for a few days, and that you’ve assembled an emergency supply kit in case of a power loss.
Of course, you’ll also need to make sure that you’ve chosen a home restoration company that you can rely on to repair anything in your home before a heat wave hits.
That’s where we come in.
Spend some time on our website to learn more about our services. Our professionals at SVMPS can do a general inspection of your home to make sure it is prepared for heat waves. We also provide air duct cleaning services which will help improve the efficiency of your central air conditioning system.
You can reach us by calling (800) 245-4622 for restoration and cleaning services in the Minneapolis and St. Paul, MN area.