6 Heatwave Tips: How to Keep Cool

UK homes are usually built to retain heat over winter, with insulation and thick walls. So, when we do get hot weather or extreme heat, opening windows and reaching for ice creams doesn’t always do the trick. Therefore, having some help can really work wonders.

Hiring a portable air conditioner is the perfect solution. This way, you don’t have to store a big bulky appliance when it isn’t in use, and it can be hired immediately when you need it.

You will also be able to hire a much more powerful air conditioner than you can buy, which could help cool your entire home rather than just a single room. So, why not prepare for the upcoming heatwave and hire one today?

There are plenty of other ways you can also cool down yourself and your home, though. Below, we will go into some of the 6 best options.


Tip 1: Air condition your home

Most of us would think to opt for a fan to cool us down in summer. However, an air conditioner is better than a fan in so many ways.

Firstly, fans blow cold air into the room. We will usually set them up to blow this air at our skin, promoting moisture evaporation. We feel the benefit but often find the room as a whole is still warm. This is because a fan doesn’t actually remove the warm air.

An air conditioner unit, however, pulls in hot air which is then cooled down by the evaporation process inside the appliance. Hot air is cooled by the condenser before being released back into the room. You will feel the room cool down, as well as yourself.

Humidity, which is what makes us feel hot and sticky, will also decrease, so you will immediately feel a difference. If it is really humid, fans don’t work well, because sweat doesn’t evaporate quite as fast as it would in non-humid environments.

It is better for your health to use an air conditioner. Fans speed up the rate moisture evaporates from your skin, increasing the risk of dehydration.

If you’re concerned, read our blog on how to get the most out of your air conditioner.


Tip 2: Stay hydrated

As you read above, we sweat in high heat. This is to help us cool. But it does mean a loss of moisture from our bodies.

You need to drink plenty of fluids to replace this loss. Cool drinks will help us feel colder. Sticking to water-based drinks is best, and you should never wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Consume more than you’re used to on a normal day.

Fizzy carbonated drinks can contain between 85% and 99% water, so can help with hydration which is good if you find these easier to drink than water. But do be careful about the high caffeine and sugar contents, which can be dehydrating if consumed in high amounts.

Isotonic sports drinks are a great option, as they replenish lost salts, sugars, and fluids. Avoid excess alcohol, and also limit hot caffeinated drinks. Always take water with you if you’re out.


Tip 3: Stay out of the midday sun

The hottest part of the day is between 11 am and 3 pm. Avoid going outside at this time. Ensure your home has cooled down enough to be able to comfortably cope, especially if the sun comes through your windows.

Keep curtains and blinds closed to stop the rays from coming in and stay in shaded areas if you must go out.


Tip 4: Wear loose clothing

Direct sunlight heats the blood vessels in your skin. This increases your overall core temperature. Loose, long-sleeved clothing can help reduce the likelihood of this happening, as your skin doesn’t actually come into contact with the sun's rays.

Covering up as much as possible also helps protect the skin against sunburn. If clothing is loose, sweat is also more likely to evaporate, making you less likely to feel hot and humid and reducing your body temperature.

Opt for a material such as cotton which is lightweight, and light colours will be less likely to hold the heat. Young children particularly need baggier clothing, as they have a higher blood vessel-to-skin ratio.


Tip 5: Avoid cold showers

While you might feel much colder, cold water contact on the skin actually may conserve heat in your body. It causes blood vessels in the skin to constrict with the shock. A cold shower will be a quick event, speeding up this process.

But blood needs to be closer to the surface of the skin to radiate heat out (this is why we look flushed when we’re hot or exercising). So, a tepid shower is more likely to boost blood flow to the skin, cooling the body down faster. If you do want water to cool you down, longer immersion such as a cool bath or swimming will gradually cool the body, so it is a better option.


  • SPEEDY TOP TIP: Have a spray bottle of room-temperature water to hand which you can spritz on your skin when you start to get warm again. This will have a similar effect on a smaller scale and gives instant relief


Tip 6: Pop your pillowcase in the freezer

A bit of a hack, but it works. About an hour before bed, put your pillowcase in the freezer to cool it down. Then, when you lie down on it, the pillowcase will be cool and offer some relief for you.

Some people also put their bedsheets in the freezer, but it depends if you can be bothered with the faff of putting them on again! If you do any of these, put it in a bag in the freezer which will stop fabric from sticking or getting wet.

Use breathable cotton sheets and try to sleep without any covers.


The signs of heat-related illness

Unfortunately, heat exhaustion and heat stroke affect hundreds of people every year in the UK, especially older people. So, if you are preparing for the high temperature weather, here are some symptoms of heat-related issues which you need to be aware of:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Difficulty breathing
  • A fast or weak pulse
  • Cold, pale, clammy skin
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Muscle cramps
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness and fainting
  • Stumbling, confusion, and low coordination

If you do experience these symptoms, sip plenty of water, move to the coolest part of your home, change into loose clothes and place cold cloths on your body. It is important to also sit or lie down.

Should symptoms continue, or you are concerned about an elderly/young relative, seek medical attention. If you experience vomiting or symptoms last for longer than an hour, emergency attention will be needed.



Yes. Speedy Services, the UK's leading tool hire company, have a range of air conditioning units for hire nationwide. Speedy has more than 200 service centres across the nation, hire counters in selected B&Qs and nationwide 4-hour delivery, rotavator hire has never been easier.

You’ll find all the tools you need right here. Why not start planning your next DIY project and open a Speedy account today online or visit us in-store?


Ready for more tips and ideas?

Whether you need to stay cool (or warm) in the UK weather or fancy trying some outdoor DIY while it isn’t raining, we have plenty of tips on our blog.

Speedy in your pocket
Get a Speedy Account