(BPT) – As winter approaches, many cities in the U.S. have already started to experience the winter chill with temperatures below freezing and snow fall. But cold weather isn’t exclusively a northern phenomenon as the majority of the country experiences extreme temperatures at some point during the winter months. Remember in January 2014 when all 50 states logged below-freezing temperatures on the same day?
Cold weather can wreak havoc on your home and your comfort if you are not well prepared. That’s why it’s important to prepare your home for winter and take extra precautions for when the temperatures drop, no matter where you live.
Here are some tips that can help protect your house and comfort this winter:
* Install a smart thermostat. You may not always be home when you learn of a coming cold snap or hear that temperatures have plummeted. Using an app on your smartphone, a smart thermostat can allow you to make adjustments to your home’s temperature from anywhere, which means you can always come home to a toasty warm house.
* Seal windows and doors. Check weather stripping around windows and doors. If you find worn, cracked or inadequate sealing, replace it. Sealing around windows and doors helps prevent heat loss in the winter.
* Prep your pipes. Below freezing temperatures can cause water pipes to crack or burst. Insulate any water pipes that are exposed, winterize outdoor faucets and turn off the water to your home if you plan to be away for a prolonged period of time.
* Make sure your heat source measures up. Older, traditional HVAC systems can struggle to keep your home comfortable when temperatures dip below freezing. Consider installing LGRED-enabled HVAC technology to your home. LG’s Reliable to Extreme Degrees (RED) heating and cooling systems can be installed in a wide variety of climates, including places that experience extremely low temperatures. They provide 100 percent heating capacity down to 5 degrees Fahrenheit, and continue to heat reliably even when the outside temperature is as low as -13 degrees.
* Take care of your roof. Inspect your roof and repair any damaged shingles before winter storms arrive. Be sure gutters are clean to help prevent an ice dam and trim any tree branches that could fall on your home if they break under heavy snow and ice.
* Tackle inside germs. Extreme temperatures often force us indoors for long periods of times. With the LG PuriCare Air Purifier, you can leave your home feeling fresh and clean while sterilization removes floating viruses and germs.
* Add insulation. The Insulation Institute estimates 90 percent of American homes have less than the minimum recommended insulation. Check out the U.S. Department of Energy’s home insulation guidelines to see if you need to add more in your home. Having adequate insulation ensures your home efficiently retains heat and keeps the cold out.
* Gather emergency supplies. Extreme weather could leave you without power or unable to leave your home to get supplies or help. Keep a well-stocked emergency kit, complete with bottled water, non-perishable food, extra blankets, a battery-operated or hand-crank radio (for weather report updates), a battery or solar light source, and a solar charging device that can be used to power your smartphone. If you have a wood-burning fireplace for supplemental heat, be sure to have a supply of dry firewood on hand in case of a power outage.
Extreme weather can happen anywhere; in 2014, even Hawaii recorded a below-freezing temperature of 21 degrees. When it comes to home comfort and keeping your family warm during the winter, it’s a good idea to prepare for what is to come!
* Watch more First Aid: When Nature Attacks videos: http://www.howcast.com/videos/163397-How-to-Keep-Warm-If-There-Is-No-Heat-in-Your-House
If you lose your heat in the middle of the winter, it can be more than just an inconvenience—it can be a life-threatening event. Here’s how to stay warm.
Step 1: Shut doors and windows
Make sure all doors and windows are securely shut. If you have storm windows, make sure that both the interior and exterior windows are closed.
Step 2: Seal windows
Cover windows with clear plastic wrap and secure with duct tape. This will reduce heat loss through the windows while allowing sunlight to warm the interior of your home.
Before sealing windows, make sure that your home’s ventilation system is unblocked and that your carbon monoxide detector is working.
Step 3: Draft-proof your doors
Draft-proof doors by rolling up towels and lining them along the bottom of your doors.
Step 4: Dress in layers
Put on multiple layers of clothing. The extra clothing itself will provide warmth, and the air between the layers acts as an insulator.
Wool, flannel, and synthetics will keep you warmer than cotton or silk.
Step 5: Accessorize
Don’t forget hats and gloves. Your objective is to minimize the amount of exposed skin.
Step 6: Use blankets
Now wrap yourself in a few thick blankets.
Step 7: Eat and drink
Don’t forget to eat and drink. Your body needs fuel to produce heat, so stay well fed, and don’t skimp on the fats. Also, drink water, which will help your body process those calories.
Stay away from alcoholic and caffeinated beverages. Both will dehydrate you, making it harder for your body to generate heat.
Step 8: Stick together
If you’re in this with other people, stay in the same room, or huddle together, so that you can benefit from each other’s body heat.
Did You Know?
Though igloos are made of snow, parts of the interior can reach 61° Fahrenheit, just from body heat.
How to Keep Warm If There Is No Heat in Your House