Surviving the End of Summer
Check your home’s air filter. While most homes don’t have a dedicated air filtration system to help reduce smoke, pollen, and dander in the home, making sure your HVAC system’s air filter is clean can go a long way in ensuring easier breathing. Better yet, we can provide a dedicated home filtration system to allow you to breathe better during the fire season and all year round.
August in the Lower Mainland is a strange time. It can get hot and smoky, and once that smoke settles in from fires raging throughout B.C. and Washington, most people head indoors — and stay indoors until the smoke clears. Forecasters are predicting another bad fire season this year. It’s been drier than normal, and, because of unseasonably warm weather, the snowpack has melted off at a fast rate, meaning much-needed moisture isn’t in the mountains. It’s hot, it’s dry, and all it takes is a lightning strike, a hot car, a cigarette butt, or poorly maintained campfire to officially ignite fire season. It’s a “perfect storm” for fires and smoke around B.C. While there’s not much we can do about the fires, there are steps we can take to protect ourselves from the smoke and pollution. When it comes to you and your family’s health, staying out of the smoke is very important. It’s doubly important for infants, the elderly, and people with breathing and lung issues. The best thing you can do is simply stay indoors with the windows closed, but that’s not always ideal. Here are some tips to decrease the amount of smoke you breathe in. Limit commuting. If you do need to commute (as many of us do), try to carpool, if possible. When out and about in your vehicle, keep the windows rolled up with the A/C on recirculate. Also, make sure your vehicle’s air filter is in tiptop shape. Avoid vigorous outdoor activity. This includes running, hiking, biking, and even extended periods of walking. If you can’t avoid working outside, invest in a filter or respirator mask to filter out smoke and pollution.
You want to stay cool and comfortable, which means the A/C will likely be running longer than it normally would during the day and possibly during the night. Here are a few quick tips to ensure you’re not overtaxing your A/C. Make sure your windows are sealed. Windows can allow a lot of heat to get into the house — and a lot of cool air to escape. Make sure there are no cracks or poor seals around the window frames. At the same time, keeping the blinds or curtains closed can help keep the inside air cooler. Keep the A/C at a reasonable temperature. In other words, don’t set the thermostat too cold. The colder the temperature, the harder the A/C has to work. Find a temperature that’s comfortable but not too exhausting for the A/C. Most people are comfortable around 22 or 23 degrees C — a good temperature that isn’t particularly hard on the A/C. Finally, don’t forget routine maintenance. Before we get ready for the push into fall, regular maintenance will help keep your A/C in great shape. You certainly don’t want it to give out in the middle of this hot and dry fire season. But if it does, you can always rest assured that we are only one phone call away. With that, we hope you stay safe and breathe easy this fire season. And as you’ve come to expect, we’re standing by the phone, ready to take your call 24/7, no matter your plumbing, cooling, heating, or drainage needs!
1 604-532-9625 • –Tyler Dillonwww.lewismaclean.com
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