09 Nov Winter is Approaching – Are you prepared for the weather?
It may still be fall for another month, but winter and the cold weather are approaching fast. If you live in the Northeast or Midwest, you may have the winter weather preparation drill down, but it is still important to make sure you are doing all that you can to remain prepared for anything from low temperatures to a snow storm. Check out these tips below to make sure you are prepared for all that could come your way this winter.
Home Preparation Checklist:
- Clean out gutters, disconnect and drain all outside hoses
- Make sure you have a winter emergency supply kit with:
- Rock salt or more environmentally safe products to melt ice on walkways
- Sand to improve traction
- Snow shovels and other snow removal equipment
- Sufficient heating fuel, like dry, seasoned wood for your fireplace or wood-burning stove
- Adequate clothing and blankets to keep you warm
- Insulate walls and attics, and caulk and weather-strip doors and windows.
- Repair roof leaks and remove tree branches that could get weighed down with ice or snow and fall on your house – or your neighbor’s. (Avoid liability for the latter.)
- Wrap water pipes in your basement or crawl spaces with insulation sleeves to slow heat transfer.
- Make sure your furniture isn’t blocking your homes heating vents.
- If your house will be unattended during cold periods, consider draining the water system.
- Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets connected to pipes that run through unheated or unprotected spaces.
- If you have a fireplace, keep the flue closed when you’re not using it.
- Consider an insulated blanket for your hot water heater.
Car Preparation Checklist:
- Drive only if it is absolutely necessary. If you must drive, travel during the day.
- Don’t travel alone. Keep others informed of your schedule.
- Stay on main roads and avoid back road shortcuts.
- Top off antifreeze, windshield wiper fluid, gas, oil and other fluids.
- Make sure your tires have enough tread. Consider snow tires.
- Clear snow from the top of the car, headlights and windows.
- Save the numbers for your auto club, insurance agent and towing service into your cell phone.
- Keep a cold-weather kit in your trunk. It should include a blanket or sleeping bag, gloves, hard candy, bottled water, folding shovel, first aid kit, flashlight and cell phone charger.