Keeping cool in the sweltering heat

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York County –

For the first time in about nine months, temperatures are expected to soar into the 90’s.  With high temps, keeping cool is the name of the game.  There are several things that you can do to keep cool while not breaking the bank. 

It’s going to be hot no matter how you slice it.  But there are ways to keep your home and yourself feeling cool.  It starts inside the house.  Simple things like drawing the blinds to keep out the sunlight will make a big difference.  Also, minimize the heat generating appliances like stoves and dishwashers.  Finally, a fan is key.  Air flow alone can make it seem like three degrees cooler on the skin.

keeping coolBesides the home, the body needs preparation as well for the heat wave ahead.  There are simple things that you can do to make sure that staying cool is on the agenda.  First, wear light clothes and light color clothing to block the sun’s rays.  Stay inside or in a cool spot whenever possible and probably most important of all, drink lots of water.  Hydration is key.  The body needs to sweat to cool off.  If you don’t drink enough water, the body can’t sweat and bad things can happen.

 “Sweating uses water it depletes your body of water. It’s important to replenish that water over time and avoid getting thirsty. When you are thirsty it’s a sign of dehydration,” said Dr. Gloria Addo-Ayensu. 

If exercise is in the forecast, do it early or later or inside.  During these types of air quality action days, keeping fit should not come at a cost to your body.  It only takes a matter of minutes for dehydration or heat stroke to set in.

Finally, keeping cool without breaking the bank is key.  PPL recommends setting your thermostat between 73 and 78 degrees.  While that seems high, combining other factors like closing the blinds and limiting the use of heat making devices really can save you in the end.

Here are some other ideas from PPL:

Beat the Heat For Less

PPL Electric Utilities offers tips as mercury climbs

PPL Electric Utilities customers can follow low-cost and no-cost tips to keep cool for less as the first potential heat wave of the season descends on the region this week.

Temperatures are forecast to be near or above 90 degrees into the weekend.

“We’d like our customers to know there are ways to stay comfortable that will help keep their cooling costs down,” said Tom Stathos, director of Customer Programs and Services for the utility. “People say don’t sweat the small stuff. But when it comes to advice on staying cool for less, doing the small stuff is what counts.”

Cooling tips include:

  • Close drapes and shades during the day to block the hot sun.
  • Most people can be comfortable wearing light clothing and setting their thermostat temperature between 72 and 78 degrees. You will save energy for every degree higher you can set your thermostat.
  • Minimize the use of heat-generating appliances like the dishwasher, stove, washer and dryer during the warmest hours of the day.
  • Ceiling fans create air movement and are economical to operate. But use them only in rooms that will be occupied, since the fan cools your body by moving air over the skin and creating a wind chill. Using a ceiling fan often lets you raise the temperature setting on your thermostat by 1 to 3 degrees and still feel cool.
  • If you don’t have air conditioning, use multiple fans with windows open to circulate air and be safe. Seek out cool places such as malls.
  • Smart planting of trees and shrubs around your home also can help. Deciduous trees, those that lose their leaves in winter, can provide valuable cooling shade in the summer, but let the warm sun through in winter. In addition, evergreen trees and shrubs provide shade, but also serve to block cold winter winds. Visit pplelectric.com for tips on planting the right tree to avoid problems with power lines, as well as more tips, tools and programs that can help you save energy.

“With summer on the way, we also want our customers to be safe and remember to take steps to avoid heat-related medical conditions such as heat stroke, heat exhaustion and heat cramps. Be sure to know the warning signs and be able to take action,” Stathos said. “Heat illnesses can happen both indoors and out.”

Periods of high electricity demand, like summer and winter, can drive up electricity bills. For those behind on their bills, PPL Electric Utilities has programs that can help. One such assistance program is OnTrack, which can help income-eligible customers with a reduced monthly payment. The program also offers protection from shut-offs and a chance for customers to erase their debt.

Customers who may be having financial difficulties can call 1-800-342-5775 or visit www.pplelectric.com/billhelp.

PPL Electric Utilities, a subsidiary of PPL Corporation (NYSE: PPL), provides electric delivery services to about 1.4 million customers in Pennsylvania and consistently ranks among the best companies for customer service in the United States. More information is available at www.pplelectric.com.

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