Frozen pipes, roof damage, and cracked caulking are all consequences of harsh winter weather. Even if you’ve protected your home by winterizing your HVAC systems, your systems can still be shut down by severe weather. In the event of an emergency, follow these critical safety measures.
If you lose heat:
- Turn on every faucet in your house so that there is small trickle of water. In addition to winterizing your outdoor faucets, this will help prevent your pipes from freezing, which can lead to catastrophic pipe bursts.
- Seal any cracks under doors or around windows where cool air can get in and warm air can escape. If your furnace stops producing heat, you want to trap as much of it as you can in order to keep warm as long as possible.
- Keep an alternative non-electric heat source handy, such as a fireplace or a backup generator. Only turn it on after the residual heat from your furnace has dissipated. Observe safety guidelines.
- Keep plenty of warm blankets around the house. If the heat goes out, layer up and wrap yourself in heavy blankets. Don’t forget to keep your head covered—lots of heat escapes from the top of your head.
If you lose power:
- Store several portable, non-electric light sources, such as candles and high-powered flashlights, where they can be easily accessed in the dark. Don’t forget to stock extra batteries, as well as matches or a lighter for the candles.
- Keep the refrigerator closed to lock the cold air inside and prevent your food from going bad as quickly. You can also move perishables outside to stay chilled in Mother Nature’s freezer if the temperatures are cold enough.
- Stock your pantry with enough non-perishable food items to last you at least a couple of days, just in case.
- Plan ways to keep busy! Nothing feeds worry quite like boredom. Play card games, read a book out loud by candlelight, or take turns sharing stories.
- Unplug all appliances to protect them from damage if there is an electric surge when your power comes back on.
General safety measures:
- Use cellphones as little as possible to conserve power in case you need to make an emergency call. Purchasing a portable, battery-operated phone charger is a good idea to have as backup.
- Keep a case of bottled water in your pantry. If your pipes do freeze, you won’t have access to running water.
- If the power goes out and cell service is down, having a battery-operated radio in the house will allow you to stay up to date on the latest conditions.
- Every home should have a first aid kit on hand in case of emergency accidents.
- A camp stove is not necessary, but will allow you to prepare basic hot foods if you’re without power for several days at a time. Just be sure to take necessary precautions, such as using it with proper ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
Don’t be left in the cold this winter. Our Peace of Mind service plans give you 24/7 priority scheduling for all emergency service visits. Learn more about our service plans to find the package that’s right for your home: Bonfe Peace of Mind Service Plans.