Temperatures sizzle, but relief is in sight

(Compliments of Lancaster Intelligencer Journal, originally published July 10, 2007; updated October 03, 2008)


Air-conditioning salesmen are going to get their wish today and Wednesday — more heat and humidity.

Glenn Kreider, a salesman with Brubaker Inc., said Monday that sales of air conditioners have been normal for this time of year … so far.

“It’s nothing compared to years ago, when they were taking everything in the store. There’s been no mad rush,” Kreider said. “But people are starting to suffer. The heat is starting to get to them. I just hope it continues.”

Lancaster Airport recorded a high of 90 degrees through 4 p.m. Monday. Accuweather.com forecasters are predicting a high today of 96 degrees, with a 20 percent chance of afternoon thunderstorms.

The slow-moving storms, although not predicted to be widespread, could bring heavy rain to the region, Accuweather meteorologist Carl Erickson said.

Temperatures are expected to reach 92 degrees Wednesday.

The weather pattern is caused by a high-pressure system off the East Coast, he said.

This week’s weather is not breaking records, Erickson said.

The record for July 9 is 103 degrees, July 10 is 104 degrees and July 11 is 101 degrees, all set in 1936.

Although no records have been broken, the county is in the midst of its first official heat wave of this summer, he said.

In Pennsylvania, heat waves are defined as at least three days in a row of temperatures 90 degrees or higher.

The heat wave “won’t last too long, however,” Erickson said. “Wednesday is the beginning of the end of the heat.”

A cool front will be approaching Wednesday, triggering more thunderstorms.

“The warm and humid air mass will produce strong, dangerous winds and possibly hail, with heavy downpours,” he said.

Thursday will feel more comfortable, Erickson said. “We’ll have nice summer days lasting through the weekend,” he said.

David G. DeCampli, president of PPL Electric Utilities, said there are many ways to help save energy and reduce summer electric bills.

He suggested the following:

  • Turn off appliances when not in use.
  • Close curtains, blinds or shutters to keep out the sun.
  • Use ceiling fans to create a wind-chill effect.
  • Turn off unnecessary lights.
  • Set air-conditioner thermostats a few degrees higher, if health permits.
  • Clean your air conditioner’s filter.
  • Use bathroom exhaust fans only as long as necessary to avoid sucking cool air out of your home.
  • Close air-conditioning vents in unoccupied rooms.

See the original article here.