5 Ways to Keep the Kids Cool When the Air Conditioner Dies

Another school year is said and done. For many of us, that means the kids and grandkids will soon be spending a lot more time at home, taking over our refrigerators and living room TVs for a few months. Hopefully, your AC has had its yearly a check-up in preparation for what’s forecasted to be a very hot summer — otherwise, you could find yourself scrambling to keep your kids cool when the air conditioner dies. 

 Mother serving watermelon while her daughter watches. Frozen fruit is a great way to keep the kids cool when the air conditioner dies.


If your air conditioner calls it quits, these tips can help you keep everyone safe and comfortable while you’re waiting for emergency air conditioner repair. 

Stay Hydrated 

Just as your air conditioner uses more ‘juice’ in warmer temperatures, kids need to drink more water to fuel their body’s effort to keep cool when the air conditioner dies. Children aren’t as in-tune with their hydration as adults, so it’s up to you to make sure they’re drinking plenty of fluids (and not diuretics like caffeinated pop and sugary juice). Cold drinks also help to cool your internal temperature. 

Try offering frozen watermelon slices or ice pops as a fun alternative to plain water. 

Sleep Downstairs 

One of the major downsides to life without air conditioning? Trying to fall asleep in a hot, sweaty room. The higher the temperature, the harder it is to get a good night’s rest, leading to some seriously crabby kids the next morning. 

However, if you’re lucky enough to live in a multi-story house, there’s an escape: the basement. Heat rises, so the basement will likely be more comfortable sleeping quarters than your family’s second-floor bedrooms. Why not let the kids sleep in the basement for a night while the AC is out? You could even grab your flashlights and sleeping bags, put on a movie, and turn it into a summer sleepover. 

Create a Cool Breeze 

Fans don’t actually make the air colder, but you can set them up to create a refreshing indoor breeze. Try wetting a sheet or a towel in cold water (wring it out, so it doesn’t drip), then drape it in front of a fan so the air passes through it. This trick can help make your kids’ rooms feel much more comfortable when there’s no air conditioning. 


It’s hard to keep the kids cool with your electronic appliances working against you. Any home devices and appliances that have a standby or “sleep mode” consume phantom power — meaning they generate heat even when not in use. Some of the biggest culprits are your PVR, computer and computer speakers, satellite or cable box, stereo system, and video game consoles. 

It helps to unplug any devices that run on standby mode when you’re trying to keep cool without air conditioning. Your kids might protest at first, but you can seize the opportunity to spend some much-needed screen-free time together. After all, it’s only until the AC is fixed! 

Banish the Sun 

A lot of summer heat gets into your home via the windows. If the sun’s bearing down, make sure to cover any south or west-facing windows with curtains or blinds (car shades from the dollar store can also work on small windows in a pinch).  

Need Emergency Air Conditioner Repair? 

Our service team is on-call 24 hours a day for emergency air conditioner repair in the Greater Toronto Area. Contact us to get your AC back in working order as soon as possible. 

Image: Iopolo

5 Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality Without Opening the Windows

Does the air in your home feel a bit…stale? Your first instinct is probably to crack open a window. That’s a great solution on most days, but not when there’s is a high level of air pollution outdoors. Although trends show our air quality is beginning to improve, residents of Toronto and the GTA still have to be on watch for smog alerts in the summer time.

Here are a few ways to breathe easier and improve your indoor air quality without opening a window.

What is the Difference Between Indoor and Outdoor Air Quality?

Most people think of “air pollution” as the hazy smog that descends on metropolitan cities some humid, summer days. But air pollution isn’t just limited to the outdoors. Believe it or not, the quality of air inside some homes can actually be worse than the air outside — though the source of pollution is different.

Outdoors, air pollution is mainly a result of vehicle emissions. Indoor air pollution comes from three different sources: microscopic particles like pollen, dust mites and pet dander, bacteria, and chemical vapours called volatile organic compounds or VOCs. Since modern homes are built to be well-insulated and tightly sealed in order to save energy, these air pollutants can get trapped inside the home.

On clear, summer days, opening the windows is one of the simplest ways to freshen and improve indoor air quality. However, when the level of outdoor air pollution is high, it’s recommended that homeowners keep windows and doors shut.

Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality

You don’t have to sweep back the curtains and open the windows to combat indoor air pollutants. Try one of these other ways to improve your indoor air quality at any time of year.

1. Give Your Home A Routine Clean

Keep dust mites in-check by vacuuming carpets and washing hard floors on a weekly basis. Using a vacuum equipped with a HEPA filter will throw fewer dust mites back into the room as you clean.

2. Have Your Air Ducts Cleaned

Without good ventilation, the air inside your home becomes stale and contaminated with airborne particles. Homeowners should schedule a professional air duct cleaning at least once every three years to keep the ventilation system clear and healthy.

3. Purify The Air

Whole-home air purification systems like the Lennox PureAir actively remove all three types of indoor air pollution for cleaner air throughout the home.

4. Regulate Humidity With A Dehumidifier

Moisture spurs the growth of allergens like dust mites and mould. By keeping the humidity level no higher than 60%, you can curtail these major contributors to indoor air pollution. Smart thermostats like the ecobee and iComfort make it easier to monitor the humidity in your home.

5. Add Air-Purifying Plants

While plants alone cannot clean your air, some species are surprisingly good at absorbing and neutralizing certain volatile organic compounds. NASA made this discovery back in 1989 while looking for ways to clean the air inside space stations — and it works here on Earth, too!


Image: Antonio Guillem

2018 Forecast: What to Expect for Summer Weather in the GTA

After the winter we just had, we’re almost afraid to ask what the summer of 2018 has in store for us. Last year, our part of Canada saw lots of grey skies and torrential rainfall, contributing to a record-breaking rise in the shorelines of Lake Ontario.

So, what’s to come for summer weather in the GTA this year? Can we expect a record number of calls for emergency air conditioner repair in Toronto and the GTA?

While there’s no way to know for sure, we can’t resist looking ahead at the 2018 summer forecast. Here’s what climatologists and other weather-watchers expect we’ll see in Toronto and the GTA.

Environment Canada: Hot Summer in the GTA

Good news for beach-lovers: the summer of 2018 may bring more favourable weather to look forward to than last year.

At least that’s what Dave Phillips, Canada’s senior climatologist, predicts. Phillips says that Eastern Canada will see above-average temperatures in the summer of 2018, especially in the Great Lakes region.

The average summer temperature in Toronto is about 27°C, and the city typically sees between 15 days of above-30-degree weather. We had just nine 30+ days in 2017, while 2016 gave us almost 40 such days. Phillips expects the summer of 2018 will resemble 2016.

It almost sounds too good to be true, and unfortunately, it could be. Although Environment Canada derives its forecast from numerical weather prediction models, it’s not always on the mark when it comes to long-range forecasting. Back in March, for instance, Phillips forecasted that the spring of 2018 would be no colder than usual — until we got that big ice storm in April, that is.

Will There Be Less Rainfall?

While it wasn’t particularly cold last summer, the rain put a damper on many summer days. The heavy precipitation, combined with the melting snow, even resulted in flooded basements and ruined backyards all across the region.

Fortunately, we are unlikely to see a repeat of such weather in 2018. The International Lake Ontario—St. Lawrence River Board, which oversees the Moses-Saunders Dam on the Canadian border, sees no indication that the extreme rainfall that resulted in the flooding of Lake Ontario will occur again this year.

That’s especially good news for those planning a trip to the beautiful Toronto Islands.

Preparing Your Home for the Summer Ahead

If the forecast pans out as climatologists predict, you could find yourself switching on the A/C a lot more than usual. We saw an upswing in calls for emergency air conditioner repair in Toronto two years ago, and this year could bode the same.

We recommend that our customers have their cooling equipment inspected before the warm weather hits to ensure the system is running efficiently and fix any problems that could lead to a breakdown. If it’s been a few years since your last inspection, now is definitely a good time to make the call.

Learn more about our professional air conditioner maintenance service.


Image: Gary Blakeney