Handling the Heat Wave: Coping With High Temps in Los Angeles
It took its sweet time getting here, but there's no doubt that the summer heat arrived in Los Angeles with a bang. Of course, Southland residents, particularly those living in North Hollywood and the surrounding valley, are used to triple digit temperatures during these dog days of summer.
That said, though we're seldom phased by heat advisories, keep in mind these tips for coping with extreme heat and staying safe during these hottest months of the year.
Avoid Sunburns & Heat Stroke
How quickly can you get a sunburn? It depends on the person, but it can happen in less than 15 minutes of sun exposure. So whether you're headed to the beach, a BBQ or just working around the house, wear sunscreen. Be sure to choose one with at least 30 SPF protection and reapply as directed.
While sunburns can be painful and, over time, lead to serious illnesses such as skin cancer, extreme temperatures can also present a more immediate danger. Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are a risk, particularly if you're engaged in physical activity such as playing sports or hard labor like yard work or construction. Be sure to hydrate well, take frequent breaks and seek out shade. Learn to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion and how to treat and prevent it from escalating into a heat emergency.
And if you're looking for a cool place to cool off, check out this list of free air conditioned spots around Los Angeles.
Manage AC & Irrigation Systems
Speaking of air conditioning, summer heat waves always give HVAC systems a serious workout. To prevent your AC unit from going on the fritz when you need it most, adjust it to a higher temperature during the day when you're at work or otherwise away from home. Be sure to check your unit's vents and clean or replace clogged our worn out filters. Or if you have a larger, central air conditioning system, have SERVPRO of North Hollywood inspect and clean your HVAC ducts to keep it running at peak efficiency.
Another thing that may be working overtime during the heat is your irrigation system. While California is no longer technically in a drought, it's always smart to be water wise. Run sprinklers during the coolest part of the day, in the early morning or late at night, to maximize absorption. And keep an eye on your water bill. If you notice any unusual spikes, have your irrigation system inspected for leaks. Such uncontrolled sprinkler leaks can cause flooding damage to your property or sticky, slimy lawn mold.
Prepare for Storms and Flooding
Summer in Los Angeles is usually a very dry heat. However, thanks to El Nino, there's more moisture in the air than normal, and that means the potential for thunderstorms.
LA storms tend to be quick and intense, dumping lots of water on dry surfaces that are ill equipped to soak it up. Valley areas, particularly those recovering from wildfires, are at risk for flooding, which can happen very fast once the rain starts to fall. So be proactive and to prepare your home for rainstorms now while it's dry.
Of course, if you find yourself the victim of property damage from a summer storm, give SERVPRO of North Hollywood a call right away. The sooner we can begin the process of clean up and recovery from flooding damage, the more likely we'll be able to preserve or restore your valued possessions "like it never even happened."
It wouldn't be summer in So Cal without a warning about wildfires. Dry conditions are a fact of life here in Los Angeles, but our wet winter and spring may have even increased the risk for wildfires this summer. Already brush fires forced mandatory evacuations and snarled traffic near the Grapevine.
However, should disaster strike, SERVPRO of North Hollywood is just a call away, 24/7, with a fast response to any size disaster. Our team of restoration specialists is highly-trained and ready to assist you in recovering from a water damage or fire damage emergency.