If you’re moving during the summer, especially late in the summer, you stand a pretty good chance of moving on a hot day. Not a nice hot day that you can spend at the pool, but a hot day that will involve packing or unpacking boxes, moving heavy things, and wide open doors. Here are some tips for coping with dangerously hot weather on your moving day.
Check the weather forecast a week before your move, and keep checking, so you’re not surprised by a heat index of 107. For long distance moves, check the weather in your destination, too. When you know what to expect, it’s easier to prepare. If the weather is going to be hot, buy bottled water and Gatorade to have on-hand. Consider stocking the freezer with cold treats like ice cream bars and Popsicles as a last treat when the truck drives off. (If your refrigerator is going on the truck, you’ll want to make sure you have ice and a cooler, and can go get ice cream after the truck leaves.)
On moving day, make sure that everyone, including your moving crew, stays hydrated. Your move will go faster and more smoothly. Common symptoms of dehydration and heat exhaustion include headaches, fatigue and dizziness. If someone is complaining about any of these things, take them seriously and have them rest, cool down, and drink plenty of liquids.
If you still have your air conditioning running, think about the best ways to take advantage of it. One idea is to try and move furniture and boxes to one central location, like the garage, then close off the rest of the house to preserve its cool temperatures. A second option is to shut off the vents in all but one room, which then becomes a cooling room in case someone becomes overheated.
If you’re moving on your own, load and unload the truck early in the morning or late in the evening, when it’s cooler. If you will be working in full sun, consider whether there’s any way to shade the path between the house and the truck. If not, wear a brimmed hat or cap and slather on the sunscreen. Few situations are improved by a sunburn.
If you have a long drive ahead of you after your truck is loaded, make sure your vehicle has fresh coolant and oil, and check your tires before you set off, to reduce the chance of the engine over heating or a flat tire. And don’t forget that in hot weather, anyone in a parked car with the windows closed is at serious risk of injury.
In your new home, you’ll want the movers to bring your furniture and boxes into the rooms they belong in, so setting up a cooling room is a better option than having them deliver everything to a central location. If, for some reason, you don’t have power in your new home yet, open all the windows and try to get a breeze flowing through the house to cool it off as much as possible.
If you unloaded a truck on an extremely hot day, your entire family will most likely be hot, dirty and grumpy at the end of the day. In that case, get cleaned up and go out for dinner in an air conditioned restaurant, rather than having something delivered. That way everyone has a chance to rest and cool down before the unpacking begins.
With some advanced planning and knowledge, you can make your hot weather move run smoothly. Hot weather can be dangerous, so plan to keep hydrated and let yourself cool down.