This week, the Portland metro area will see record heat. Temperatures are expected to soar into the 100s, with some places reaching upwards of 110 degrees! With these kinds of temperatures, it’s important to take care of yourself and be sure to listen to any heat-related warnings. The United States Weather Service has issued an extreme heat advisory for our area, so it’s important to take note and find places to stay cool. Here are some extra tips on how to stay cool.

Tip #1: Know what your equipment expectations are.
When it comes to your air conditioning system, there are certain equipment expectations that we have to keep in mind. We have to design our systems per code for outdoor temperatures of 95 degrees. Systems are designed to maintain a 20-degree difference from indoors to the outdoors. So, at 95 degrees, it needs to maintain a comfortable 75 degrees indoors. At 107, it should be 87 indoors. If we designed systems to maintain 75 degrees inside and it was 107 outside, the systems would be oversized all of the other days of the year. Oversized equipment will stop and start constantly and will use a lot more electricity because of all of the starting and stopping.

Note: if you own a heat pump system, they are sized for heating capacity, which is most often oversized on the cooling side. This means that the heat pump can produce more cooling when needed on hot days like we’re having this week. That said, they can struggle to maintain 75 on a 107-degree day.

Tip #2: Stay hydrated.
It’s very important to drink plenty of water when the weather is hot. Even if you drink a lot of water on a regular basis, on hot days, increase your intake even more. Keeping plenty of fluids going means that your body can help keep itself cool and you’ll reduce your risk for developing heat stroke or another heat related illness/sickness. In addition, dress lightly – the lighter the clothing, the less sweat and loss of fluid there will be.

Tip #3: Keep your system serviced.
Your HVAC system is one of those things that you might forget about servicing regularly, but it’s in fact one of the most important things to keep maintained. The beginning of the spring or summer is a good time to get your system maintenance appointment set. That way, you’ll be sure that all of the inside components of the machine are working well and problem spots will be pointed out in plenty of time.

Is your air conditioning not reliable? Or maybe it’s time to install a brand new air conditioning system so you can avoid breakdowns when you need your system the most! Contact us today for options on the right equipment for your home or office and we’ll also let you know what rebates or other incentives are currently happening!

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