Many homeowners overlook one of the most important things to prepare for when the holiday season rolls around—winter storms. Experts believe homeowners are unprepared for winter storms, putting their families and their home in danger. So while you’re decking the halls for the season, make sure you take the following into consideration and ensure your home is both merry and safe.
Major Dangers Associated with Winter Storms
Homeowners can face major dangers when winter weather rolls around, including damage from the weight of ice, snow and sleet. In the cases of major snowstorms, families can even be trapped in their homes due to blocked or frozen entryways. Cracked or burst water pipes connected to anything from steam and hot water heating, or a fire-protection system, can be extremely costly. Even after the storm, melting snow can cause major flooding.
Tips to Winterize and Protect Your Home
Though the list of winter weather dangers runs long, there are 10 easy steps that can ease or prevent these issues, all while creating a safer home environment during emergencies.
- Install weather stripping.
- Have your furnace/heating system serviced at the beginning of each season to ensure it runs properly, and have the filters changed.
- Move furniture away from vents.
- Add rock salt and sand to emergency kits to help melt ice on walkways.
- Install roof-heating cables to prevent ice dams on roofs and gutters.
- Insulate pipes.
- Place a cover over attic stairs.
- Insulate outlets with gasket covers.
- Invest in an automatic home standby generator, such as those from Generac, that automatically provide power for heat and electricity when there is a power outage. They turn on as soon as the power goes out and stay on until utility power is restored.
- If you have extra money in your budget, go for attic insulation, which can save as much as 30 percent on heating costs.