When thinking about the weather, it’s easy to focus on the most direct impact – need for an umbrella, cancel the picnic, come in from the pool , etc.– while ignoring the hidden risks brought on by small-scale weather conditions – or microclimates. In fact, most of us look to our trusted smartphone for weather forecasts, while others trust our local meteorologist to give us the information we need to plan our day. However, both provide more of a regional snapshot, reporting data from an official weather station that can be up to 50 miles away.
With continued advances in monitoring technology, it’s never been easier to track real-time weather data right in our own backyard! Pair this technology with the easy-to-use AcuRite mobile app that make it simple to quickly understand the changing conditions and their impact, so you know which steps you can take to protect your home and family.
Let's look at eight ways temperature impacts your home:
1. A/C and Heating Costs:
Monitoring outside versus inside temperature can reduce the costs of heating and cooling your home by helping you know when to open the windows rather than running the A/C or furnace. Not only does this reduce your energy bill, the fresh air is usually better for your health!
2. Family and Health Safety:
Your thermostat monitors the temperature in the area around the thermostat, not necessarily in distant rooms. Keep your kids comfortable by adding temperature monitors to their rooms. For example, room temperature in an infant nursery should be kept between 68 and 72 °F (20 to 22 °C) to reduce the risk of SIDS.
3. Pet Safety:
Let’s all agree, our pets really are part of the family! Keep track of outdoor conditions to better understand when it is too cold or warm to leave your furry friend outside during the day or overnight. With My AcuRite, you can monitor remotely to make sure the house remains comfortable for your pets when you are at work.
4. Garden Health:
When to plant? When to cover? When to shade? Make sure to plant the Spring bulbs after the last frost with a temperature monitor in your garden. Also monitor the overnight lows and the forecast lows to know when to cover the plants to keep from freezing. Summer heat can also harm various crops and plants so you can give them extra water and shade when necessary.
5. Lawn and Yard Health:
Before an early-season frost or freeze is expected, a deep watering can keep the grass warmer than the freezing air temperature. It is recommended to stay off the grass when frost is present, because stepping on the frozen grass can break the blades, causing damage you may notice in the Spring. Alternatively, summer heat waves require additional watering. You can care for your yard appropriately by monitoring the duration of these hot and cold spells.
6. Home Maintenance:
Schedule your renovations, remodels, and maintenance around the weather. Most paint requires temperatures between 40-90 °F (oil based) and 50-85 °F (latex) (4-33 °C and 10-29 °C, respectively) to dry and set correctly. Most concrete requires 3 to 5 days of temperatures above 50 °F to cure properly. Use this spot check temperature sensor to know the conditions before you start a project.
7. What to Wear?
Understand the comfort threshold of your family members. Maybe your son is actually more comfortable in shorts while you bundle up in a sweater. (He runs around at recess while you sit in a chilly open office space.) Use daily forecasts and the actual temperature trends observed at your home to learn how to best dress your kids for their comfort and activity level.
8. Planning Outdoor Activities:
Too chilly for a picnic? Too hot for a hike? Have you ever spent time preparing the family for a storm or freeze that never happened? Slight differences in elevation, ground cover, trees and more can make your yard different than the local forecast. Keep your family active, healthy and safe by adjusting your outdoor activities according to the outside temperature. And pay attention to readings like wind chill and heat index to truly understand what is happening in your yard.