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By Roz Rogoff

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About this blog: In January 2002 I started writing my own online "newspaper" titled "The San Ramon Observer." I reported on City Council meetings and other happenings in San Ramon. I tried to be objective in my coverage of meetings and events, and...  (More)

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Heat Wave

Uploaded: May 3, 2014

The weathercasters say we are having a heat wave. At least that's what they predicted last week.

When I moved to San Ramon in 1997, I rented an apartment in the Cedar Point Apartments on Cedar Point Loop off Alcosta near the Dublin border. The rent was only $700 for a one bedroom apartment. The weather there was always mild. I even teased a friend who lived in Livermore about how hot it gets there.

San Ramon has microclimates. Cedar Point Apartments, which has been renamed The Seasons, is in one of the milder locations. My house on Mangos Drive is in one of the hotter locations. In fact my neighborhood gets as hot as Livermore. When the weathercaster gives the high and low temperatures, San Ramon is usually shown a few degrees lower than Livermore, but the high temperature at my house can be at least has high as Livermore's high.

Last week I bought two large outdoor thermometers. I put one on my fence to the north and the other on my back fence to the west. On Thursday afternoon the one on the north was 120 degrees and the one on the west was 100 degrees.

The temperatures here do go over 100, but usually not this early in the year. When I first moved into my house it didn't get this hot until July. It's too soon to tell if the weather is getting hotter earlier or this is just a fluke.

When I bought my house in 1998 it did not have central heat or any air conditioning. It had those old wall furnaces – one in the hall near the bedrooms and one near the kitchen. The first Improvement I made was to add ducts and a gas furnace in the attic and a whole house air conditioner outside.

The company that put them in, ITES, used to be in Pleasanton but moved somewhere near Sacramento. They also installed dual pane windows throughout the house, all for under $10K. I added heat filtering screens on my back windows and a retractable awning over my patio last year.

From May through October I try to use as little electricity in the afternoons as possible. I had solar panels put on my roof in 2009, so my electricity is on a time-of-day billing. From 1 pm to 7 pm the rates per kwh are tripled. I try not to use any electricity during peak hours, so the energy from my panels goes back to PG&E for a credit.

I did not use the air conditioner during the "heat wave." Instead I open the back windows and front windows and patio door with the screen door closed, and let nature's air conditioning flows through the house.

My house on Mangos Drive and others along South San Ramon Creek were built in the 1970's and are designed for cross-ventilation. That was the original air conditioning back before air conditioners were invented and perfected. There's almost always a nice afternoon breeze flowing through the house to keep it cool.

I use the air conditioner at night; so I don't leave the windows open. I have a security system so I don't want to leave the windows open. While San Ramon is mostly safe, I've heard about some recent break-ins not far from me. So I leave my alarm system armed and the windows closed at night.

Comments

Posted by Al, a resident of California Reflections,
on May 5, 2014 at 1:29 pm

What's really weird is that when the sun goes behind a cloud it seems to cool off a little bit, and then when the sun comes out from behind the cloud is starts warming up again.


Posted by Roz Rogoff, a resident of San Ramon,
on May 5, 2014 at 1:49 pm

Al,

It's cooled off quite a bit from last week. Maybe it's from all those clouds hiding the sun.

Roz


Posted by hate San Ramon weather, a resident of another community,
on May 5, 2014 at 5:09 pm

I lived in San Ramon for 20 years and hated every minute of it. The wind tunnel in that valley blows arctic winds all afternoon and nearly every evening. It was too cold to ever be outside in our yard in the evenings even when we needed the AC to cool the house because none of the windows were on the windy side. I spent 20 summers there and on 18 out of the 20 we sat outside to watch the July 4th fireworks while covered by ski jackets and blankets. No place on earth is as windy and cold as San Ramon and I will never go back, not even for one evening.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on May 5, 2014 at 6:47 pm

but wait...wouldn't you like to return just once to hear Bing Crosby sing: Having a Heat Wave...a Tropical Heat Wave...a video of Bing singing is available for free on line...it's waaaaaaay cool but I won't post it unless you want to view it and sing along!

the video is WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA cool!


Posted by San Ramon Observer, a resident of San Ramon,
on May 5, 2014 at 8:31 pm

San Ramon Observer is a registered user.

Hate Weather,

I love it. That's why some people live in San Ramon and some live in Pleasanton or Livermore. I'd rather have the cool breezes blowing through my house in San Ramon and wear a sweater. Come back for the 4th of July band concert in Central park, and bring a blanket and a sweater. I have L L Bean knit cotton pullovers and zip up cardigans in four different colors each.


Posted by San Ramon Observer, a resident of San Ramon,
on May 5, 2014 at 9:02 pm

San Ramon Observer is a registered user.

Cholo,

I'm so glad you added the lyrics to Irving Berlin's 1933 song Heat Wave. I was going to include them at the beginning of my blog, but verse refers to a lady from Martinique who "Started the heat wave by making her seat wave," and I couldn't identify who she was.

At first I thought it was Josephine Baker, but she's depicted in the show by Ethel Waters singing Harlem on my Mind. Some of Irving Berlin's best songs came from that Broadway show, "As Thousands' Cheer." Web Link

Roz


Posted by Ms. bunny, a resident of San Ramon,
on May 6, 2014 at 7:21 am

Hate SR weather...I have to wonder, did you live on the WESTSIDE of San Ramon Valley Blvd. Because historically, those people have difficulty using their yards due to wind issues. Here on the eastside? "PURRFECT" WEATHER and I've lived here eons. I have NO complaints. We get a breeze, sometimes real "wind" this time of year a few days during spring, but other than that? You must have been living in a wind tunneled area. Vast difference (I have to wonder, what else you didn't like about SR besides this...I'm guessing this isn't the "core" of your upset with the town!)


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on May 6, 2014 at 9:27 am

Web Link

signed

can can...


Posted by San Ramon Observer, a resident of San Ramon,
on May 6, 2014 at 6:07 pm

San Ramon Observer is a registered user.

Great link, Cholo. Better than Bing, the original Ethel Waters in her 1933 recording. Ethel Waters was a national treasure. Too bad she wasn't always treated that way when she was alive.

Roz


Posted by Guest, a resident of another community,
on May 8, 2014 at 9:01 am

It was never a 100 degrees last week. When you place an outdoor thermometer right in the sunlight you're going to inaccurate readings.


Posted by San Ramon Observer, a resident of San Ramon,
on May 8, 2014 at 6:12 pm

San Ramon Observer is a registered user.

Guest,

This blog was posted on May 3rd, so "last week" was the week before that. The thermometer on the North gets the afternoon sun and that one was 120 degrees. The one on the West is under a tree and does not get direct sun. That's the one that was 100 degrees.

Roz


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