Many of us spend winter dreaming of sunny summer days ahead. However, the weather can become too hot to enjoy.

To make sure you can keep your cool when the weather heats up, here are some tips.

Check your air conditioner
If you have an air conditioner, make sure it’s working properly before you need it. Turn it on for a test and schedule service if needed. This way, if there is a problem you can solve it before the first heat wave. If you don’t have an air-conditioner, identify places close to home where you can cool off on hot days, such as a library or community centre.

Have hot-weather recipes ready
Using your oven during a heat wave will add to the hot temperatures you’re feeling. Rather than trying to come up with recipes when it’s already too hot to think, plan some oven-free meals before the hot weather arrives. There are plenty of delicious options, including no-cook and cold dishes, as well as microwave-safe meals.

Revisit your closet
Many of us store our summer clothes out of the way for the winter. Dig them out in the springtime before the first heat wave so that you know they fit and where to find them when hot temperatures strike. Loose-fitting and light-coloured clothes made from breathable fabrics can help keep you cooler.

Brush up on safety steps
If you take medication or have a health condition, ask your health-care provider about how heat can affect you and follow their advice. If you do outdoor work or activities, ensure that you have a plan to accommodate extreme heat.

Arrange check-ins to reduce risk
Watch out for the early signs of heat illness, which include headaches, nausea or vomiting, dizziness or fainting, extreme thirst, and rapid breathing or heartbeat. These can rapidly evolve into life-threatening emergencies and affect your ability to reach out for help.

While everyone is at risk for heat illnesses, older adults, infants and young children, people experiencing homelessness and anyone with a chronic illness is at greater risk. Living alone or being socially isolated can also put people at great risk. Talk to your family, friends and neighbours to arrange regular check-ins with them during hot weather in case anyone needs support.

Find more information about how to prepare for summer heat at