Heat waves are extended period of extreme heat. If you happen to live in Texas, than you are more than familiar with these long weeks of sweltering conditions and excess humidity. Learning how to weather these long days and exceedingly long nights without suffering heat stroke, heat exhaustion, however, takes time. Following is everything you need to know about how to handle a southeast Texas heatwave.

The first and most obvious step in these efforts is finding a way to effectively cool down your home. The most efficient method is by having an air conditioner installed. Most homes in this region already have units installed given the likelihood of excessive seasonal heat.

If you don’t have an air conditioner, now is the perfect time to consider getting one. Moreover, if your unit is old and outdated, it is a good idea to have it replaced. It is incredibly unsafe to have the essential home appliances break down during heat waves, especially if there are elderly adults, babies or people with compromised immune systems in the residence.

While fans have a certain amount of value during times like these, it is important to note that they are not actually designed to cool the property interior down. Instead, they simply move the indoor air around. Even strategically placing them by windows and doors will only invite more hot air in and the actually temperature of your abode will not be decreased. Thus, these are not the best form of cooling equipment to have on hand during a time of extreme weather.

Swamp coolers are other low-cost options that people attempt to use during these periods of intense heat. While they might look a bit like window air conditioners, they are not the same. AC units and systems both cool the air down and extract excess moisture. In this way, they control both temperatures and humidity. Conversely, swamp coolers actually use outside humidity to cool the indoor air down. As such, they actually bring more moisture into the home, thereby making the living space feel damp, muggy and only slightly cooler.

You may be reticent to invest in a central air conditioning system simply because you do not have existing duct work in place. The good new is that you do not have to pay the high costs of having duct work added to your abode. You can instead install a multi-split air conditioning unit.

A mini-split system will put a control box and vent in each room that is connected to a central condenser outside. In addition to limiting the high costs of having air ducts installed, units like these will also give you the power to selectively cool zones throughout the property. This means that you don’t have to use energy to cool down spaces that no one is actually using.

There are a number of other ways to keep your property cool during a heat wave. For instance, you might want to try hosing down your roof or the exterior walls of the home during the hottest time of the day. There is even the option of having a reflective roof coating installed so that the heat from the some is not absorbed and does not have the chance to warm the building structure up.