With thunderstorms come lightning, which can be potentially harmful to your air conditioning unit, so we suggested that you turn off your unit during summer storms. However, thunderstorms can create excess moisture, humidity and heat. This can even lead to mold and airborne pathogens in your home. So, how do you keep your family cool and your home safe while it is storming? Here are some of Warner Service’s best tips on how to keep cool during a thunderstorm:
Fan, fans, fans. In rooms that create a lot of moisture, such as bathrooms, kitchens and basements, humidity tends to linger. To ventilate the air, put fans in the corner of each room. It is important that these fans are battery-powered and portable, so you can circulate and evaporate air wherever you are, even when your other appliances are not plugged in for safety reasons.
Tube your pipes. Before storm season hits, consider using tubular or wrap insulation on your pipes. This will help decrease “sweating” due to condensation from warm rain. You should also consider adding a mixing value to the water supply line as well as a rigid waterproof insulation on the tank to reduce the effects of humidity and moisture.
Waterproof your concrete. Concrete basement walls can be a huge source of excess humidity. Waterproof them from the outside before the storm hits or try do-it-yourself waterproofing with products such as Drylok or Xypex. Waterproofed concrete walls help prevent water from seeping into crawl spaces, which are prime suspects for dampness and mold spores during the rainy season. To prevent further moisture in the basement floor, consider installing a sump pump or an extensive French/perimeter drain.
Buy some special plants. Epiphytes are tropical plants, such as English Ivy, Peace Lily, Reed Palm, Boston ferns and Tillandsia, that get their water from the air instead of at the roots. They do not completely eliminate humidity from your home, but they do help reduce hazardous humidity levels. If you choose to buy plants that are not humidity-reducing, leave them outside or cover the exposed soil with plastic wrap to stop transpiration. This will decrease condensation in the air, and you will have to water them less often.
Make your own dehumidifier. A homemade dehumidifier uses rock salt to pull excess moisture from the air and decrease humidity. The best parts about this project are that it only requires inexpensive yet durable materials. You can put your diy dehumidifier wherever you want and even make multiple depending on the level of humidity in your home. We've put together a full guide to making your own dehumidifier, which you can download here:
Unplugging and shutting down appliances, including your air conditioning unit, during a thunderstorm is smart, but that does not mean you have to sit in a humid, sticky home until it stops. Since most dehumidifiers come with plugs, cheat a bit and create your own with some plastic buckets and rock salt. You could also invest in some tropical plants or a bevy of fans. Consider having a professional install a sump pump in your basement or tubular insulation around your pipes to prevent condensation and excess moisture. Whether you need help with installation or have any questions, contact Warner Service today.