As a resident of the Sunshine State, you already know Florida has always been one of Mother Nature’s prime targets during hurricane season. While this summer’s season has been uncharacteristically mild, we’re not out of the woods yet. This time last year, we were dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Irma; some people still are. You cannot let your guard down because you never know when the next Irma or Maria will strike. Here are some tips to keep you prepared for this hurricane season and beyond.
Prep Your Yard
It is rare that a hurricane will suddenly pop out of nowhere. You will usually have a few days of warnings to give you notice. This gives you time to get your yard prepped for the storm. Whenever possible, you should:
- Trim any dead tree branches or branches that are close to your home to prevent damage.
- Secure any grills, tools, patio furniture or outdoor play equipment that could take flight in strong winds and become dangerous projectiles.
- Do not depend on your lanai to prevent items from flying around because in a bad storm, that too might take flight.
- If you have exterior hurricane shutters or shades, use them and if you don’t, tape your windows or cover with plywood.
Prepare for Comfort
If the power goes out, you could be without water, air conditioning and refrigeration for several days. In the days before the storm:
- Stock up on drinkable water and fill jugs, bathtubs or buckets with water for flushing toilets.
- Lower the temperature in your refrigerator and freezer.
- Freeze jugs of water that can help keep your food cold.
- Stock up on non-perishable food.
- Run your air conditioner several degrees lower than you normally would to keep your home as cool as possible.
- Cut down on radiant heat from the sun by keeping windows, doors and blinds closed.
Minimizing Damage to Your AC Unit
Before the storm strikes, you want to make sure that you do what you can to protect your air conditioning system. Your system’s condenser can be vulnerable to damage from the storm; but there are things you can do to minimize potential damage:
- Turn off power to the unit before the storm hits to prevent damage from electrical surges or lightning strikes.
- Strap down your condenser with straps to prevent it from being lifted from strong winds.
- If flooding is imminent, raise the unit up on concrete blocks to reduce the chance of water damage.
- Cover the condenser with plywood or a tarp to prevent flying debris from damaging it.
After the Storm
Once the storm is over and power is restored, it is only natural that you want to turn your air conditioner back on to cool off and reduce the humidity in your home. But before you restore power to your AC, first check it for any signs of damage from the hurricane. If you are confident that there has been no damage to the unit, turn its power back on and go ahead and start cooling your home. However, if it looks like your unit took on some damage, fails to start up or is not working as it should, you need to have a professional come out to inspect and repair it.
Don’t forget that Snyder Heating & Air Conditioning Company is always here for you regardless of the season. Our highly trained experts are ready to respond quickly to any air conditioning or heating emergency you might have throughout the year. Call us anytime at (904) 441-8476 or go online to schedule service.