HERE COMES THE HEAT!!!
TIPS FOR EXERCISING IN SUMMER HEAT
- The time of day is important. Unless you are training for an event that takes place in the daytime heat, avoid exercising from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It’s the hottest part of day. Generally, the early morning is the best time to workout, especially if it’s going to be a scorcher that day.
- Wear loose, light-colored clothing. The lighter color will help reflect heat, and cotton material will help the evaporation of sweat. You may also want to try specially designed, “hi-tech” running shirts and shorts. They are often made from material meant to keep you cool.
- Sunscreen is a must. Use SPF 45 just to be safe. It’s important to protect your skin. You can get burned and suffer sun damage to your skin even on cloudy days.
- Stay hydrated. Before you go out, drink a glass or two of water. Carry a bottle of water or even a hydration pack such as the CamelBak. Take a drink every 15 minutes, even when you’re not thirsty. When you’re done with your workout, have a few more glasses of water.
- Replenish your electrolyte and salt intake while exercising. You can use SUCCEED capsules--small, simple packs of sodium and electrolytes that keep my system in check.
- If you can, choose shaded trails or pathways that keep you out of the sun.
- Check the weather forecast before you start your workout. If there’s a heat advisory, meaning high ozone and air pollution, you might want to take your workout indoors. These pollutants can damage your lungs.
- Most importantly, listen to your body. Stop immediately if you’re feeling dizzy, faint or nauseous.
10 AIR CONDITIONER FIXES
- Tripped Breaker- One of the most common causes of no-cool calls is a tripped breaker. Reset it before calling a repairman. Hopefully, it won’t repeat. Something is causing the breaker to trip. Often, it’s something simple, like a bad breaker, loose wire, or a bad capacitor. However, if not addressed, some simple problems could lead to far more expensive repairs.
- DIRTY FILTER - If you have a 1” disposable filter, it should be replaced monthly. It’s out of sight and out of mind, so it’s easy to forget to change it. Dirty filters reduce indoor air quality, make the home less comfortable, and can result in frozen indoor coils, eventually leading to serious repairs.
- REFRIGERANT LEAKS - An air conditioning system is a sealed system. It should never leak refrigerant. When it does, bad things happen. Your air conditioner efficiency falls and electricity use rises. Your air conditioner may not cool. The coil may freeze. The compressor could become damaged. Plus, refrigerants are greenhouse gases. Often the problem is as simple as a bad Schrader valve or a weakened connection between a fitting and refrigerant tubing.
- SWITCH TURNED OFF - Some heating and air conditioning systems have a wall switch at the indoor unit for safety and convenience that can be confused with a light switch. If this is accidentally switched off or left off during mild weather, your air conditioner will not start. Always check the condition of this switch before calling a repairman.
- THERMOSTAT PROBLEMS - Some thermostats must be switched between heating mode and cooling mode. If the switch is in the wrong position or breaks, your air conditioner won’t start. Quality digital thermostats rarely fail. Some of the cheap ones available from the big boxes might. So what goes wrong? The switch might break, a voltage spike might cause a malfunction, and so on.
- CLOGGED DRAIN LINE - Air conditioners pull moisture out of humid air while lowering the temperature. The moisture is typically drained out of your home through your plumbing system. Algae can grow in these lines, clogging them up. This can lead to water damage in your home. Drain lines should be clear as part of your Spring air conditioning tune-up.
- CONTACTOR - A contactor is an electromechanical switch in your air conditioner. Sometimes the silver coating on a contactor will wear off and the contactor will stick, causing the outside unit to run continuously. Sometimes ants are attracted to the electricity and get squashed between the contactors, blocking them from closing. Contactors can also fail electrically. Have your repairman check these as part of a Spring tune-up, clean the surface of the contactors if needed, and recommend replacement if failure appears imminent.
- DIRTY EVAPORATOR COIL - Liquid refrigerant is sprayed into this coil to evaporate and draw heat from the air being blown across it. Periodically the coil needs to be cleaned or dust and particle build up will restrict the coil’s heat transfer capabilities and reduce system air flow down the duct system. Dirty coils increase operating cost while simultaneously reducing home comfort.
- DIRTY CONDENSER COIL - A dirty or restricted coil is inefficient, increasing electricity usage and reducing system cooling capacity. A repairman should wash, clean, and if needed, comb the condenser coil as part of the Spring tune-up.
- DUCT LEAKS - Your heating and air conditioning system adds and removes heat to the duct system. The duct system is tasked with delivering it to the occupied areas of your home. If the ducts that supply conditioned air to the living space leak and are located outside of the living space, you’re essentially paying to heat or cool the outdoors. If the ducts that return conditioned air from the living space leak, you pull in unconditioned, unfiltered air.
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