Do Not Let A Winter Storm Take You By Surprise!
Although most folks are hoping for a white winter in 2021, the Almanac predicts that winter temperatures will be above normal with the snowiest periods in mid-December and mid-January. We all hope for some snow.
Prepare Your Home for Winter. Now is the time to prepare for any adverse weather before the first big storm hits. Take these steps to keep your home safe and warm.
Leaks in the Home. First winterize your home by installing weather stripping, insulation, storm windows, clean out gutters and repair any roof leaks.
Check your Heating. Have your heating system serviced professionally to make sure that it is working properly. Have the fireplaces/chimneysinspected annually. Order firewood or propane gas. In case you lose power, have a safe alternate heating source available, such as a gas fireplace which you can start with a battery-operated control.
Monitor your Detectors. Ensure you have working smoke detectors on all levels of your home. New Smoke and CO detectorswith voicealerts with 10-year batteries tells the homeowner the type/location of danger to help you escape. The alarm alerts you to the presence of the deadly, odorless, colorless gas of carbon monoxide. Symptoms of CO poisoning includes headache, dizziness, weakness, upset stomach, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion.
Stock up with a 3-day supply of nonperishable foods that will feed your entire family. But stockpiling food for emergencies takes careful planning. Ensure to include any special diet issues.
The Best Foods You Need.
Bottled water: Your water may not be drinkable after a storm, so purchase bottled water--1 gallon of water per person per day. Also fill up all bathtubs and sinks with water to flush toilets.
Canned foods such as tuna, salmon, vegetables, or fruits.
Instant soup mixes: Use your gas stove for instant soup or noodle pack (ramen noodles) and your bottled water. If you do not have a gas stove, use a camping stove/grill outside.
Peanut butter: Peanut butter will last a long time, and you do not have to cook.
Crackers: Pair crackers with your peanut butter for an instant snack packed with protein.
Apples: While apples will go bad, they are one of the longest-lasting fruits you can buy.
Cereal: Cereal should be eaten soon after losing power, while the milk in the refrigerator is cold.
Soy or almond milk. Milk will not be safe to drink soon after losing power. Buy shelf-stable soy, powdered milk, or almond milk.
Other Foods: Packaged dried meat like beef jerky; Canned vegetables in water; Protein bars.
Cell Phone, Computers. Ensure all tech devices are fully charged. Once batteries have died, use a portable charging station to continue charging devices. Keep a battery-operated radio with extra batteries.
Lights. Invest in a battery-operated lantern. Use candles but be aware of open flame. Keep a fire extinguisher handy in case of accidental fire.
Take Precautions Outdoors.
Clothing. Wear appropriate outdoor clothing such as a wind-resistant coat; inner layers of warm clothing; mittens; hats; scarves; and waterproof boots.
Sidewalks and porches. Sprinkle cat litter, sand, or a bag of pet/plant-safe ice melt on icy patches.
Shovel Snow. Check and replace snow shovels and ice scrapers. Shovel snow using your legs to lift the snow to prevent back issues. If you use a snow blower, have it serviced and purchase fuel for it. Also ensure you take water breaks to stay hydrated.
Generator. If your home has an emergency power generator, check annually that it is working properly.
Outdoors. When you are participating in outdoor recreation, take both a buddy (like your dog), an emergency kit and a cell phone.
Get your vehicle ready before winter arrives.
Vehicle. Service the radiator and maintain antifreeze level. Check your tires’ tread and replace with all-weather or snow tires. Always keep gas tank full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines or running out of gas while stuck in the snow. Use a wintertime windshield washer.
Emergency Kit. Keep an emergency kit in your car in case you become stranded. The kit should include: Cell phone, portable charger, and extra batteries; Items to stay warm, such as extra clothing, blankets, or sleeping bags; Nonperishable foods, such as protein bars and packages of peanut butter and crackers and water. Booster cables, flares, tire pump, and a bag of sand or cat litter (for traction); flashlight, battery-powered radio, and extra batteries; First aid kit; candles and matches to provide light or lifesaving heat.
Prepare Yourself for Winter.
Winter Blues. Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD is a type of depression in which lack of sunlight upsets the body’s ability to keep its biological rhythms in sync; To counteract it:
Vitamin D. Sunlight is a source of vitamin D, a nutrient linked to sharper thinking and better emotional health. Check with your doctor about whether it is right for you.
Get light therapy. Give yourself time with daylight, such as placing exercise equipment or your work area near a window. Lamps that simulate natural light can also help.
Flu. Visit your doctor for a flu shot.
Move. Find a way to move your body: Personal training by Zoom. Dancing to music. Walking –with or without your dog.
Reconnect. Reconnect with friends. Talk on the phone. Email or send photos/videos. Check in with Facebook or other apps. Write a letter or mail a special card.
Workspace. Make your workspace more fun. Move your desk by the window and look out while working. Play your favorite music if it does not distract you.
Comfort. Cook or bake special foods as a treat for yourself. Think comfort foods.
Winters can be long, dark, and cold. But you can learn to make the most of this season by being prepared for the worst and enjoying the best that winter offers. If you need any help with leaky roofs or other winterizing assistance, contact Creative Spaces Remodeling for advice on how to prepare your home for winter.