The holiday season is here and the weather in most of the country has turned colder. I don’t know about you, but when it is freezing outside, I just want to curl up in a blanket and stay inside, warm and cozy with a mug of hot cocoa! Whether you sit by the fireside or just turn up the heater, staying warm is a priority during the winter months. Doing so safely should also be a high priority. Winter time is a prime time of year for house fires due to malfunctioning heaters or sparks from the fireplace, and Christmas lights. Carbon monoxide poisoning is also a greater risk this time of year.
To ensure a wonderful and safe winter season, licensed contractor and TV home-improvement expert David Leon from Home Made Simple on the Oprah Winfrey Network has provided the following tips to help make your home as comfy as possible this season.
- Heating system and air filters – Have your heating system serviced every year and check the filters system every month. Also, inspect your system’s exhaust vent for rust, damage, or any corrosion.
- Seal the leaks – Check to make sure your doors and windows are properly sealed so heat doesn’t escape. Inspect caulking and weather stripping around openings for wear and tear, and replace if necessary.
- Plumbing – Busted water pipes can cause expensive damage. Take time now to wrap outside pipes that might be exposed to extreme temperatures. Review the locations for the main water and fuel shut-off valves with all members of your household.
- Have a plan – When you own a home, you know that things are going to break down – but when it happens, do you know who you’ll call or what you’ll do? A home warranty is a great way to protect your budget against costly repairs, and save yourself the time and hassle of finding a qualified professional to get major systems and appliances up and running again.
This winter, homeowners should also be aware of important warning signs and potential heating system hazards to protect their homes from any accidents! In 2011, faulty and improperly used heating equipment accounted for nearly 400 deaths nationwide, more than 53,000 fires and $893 million in direct property damage, according to the National Fire Protection Association. To help prevent heating system hazards, be aware of the following critical signs when you’re indoors this winter:
- Always be aware of gas odors. If you smell gas around your heating unit, leave the area and call your gas company immediately.
- Be sure your pilot light is burning a steady blue flame. If it is not, call your heating professional or a gas company.
- Take a close look at your exhaust fan for any rust, damage or deterioration. If you notice any, call a qualified professional and describe what you see to determine whether a repair is needed.
- Take extra care with space heaters. They should be plugged directly into a wall outlet, never into an extension cord, and turned off at night. When in use, always be sure space heaters are a safe distance from curtains and other flammable items
Along with these warning signs, American Home Shield, the nation’s leading provider of home protection plans, reminds homeowners to use extra care when operating space heaters. For instance, they should be plugged directly into a wall outlet, never into an extension cord, and turned off at night. When in use, always be sure space heaters are a safe distance from curtains and other flammable items.
Homeowners can watch helpful videos about a variety of home maintenance tips and home heating warning signs at www.YouTube.com/TheAHSTeam. The informational videos are hosted by David Leon. American Home Shield also publishes the Home Matters blog, a resource to help homeowners balance their busy lives with tips and news on everything home.
I hope these tips will help you and your family stay safe and warm all through the winter months.
Wishing you and your family a blessed and happy holiday season from MomRN & Ask MomRN Show!
Get the latest updates from MomRN!
Subscribe to get our latest content by email.