New Homeowners: Tips On Preparing Your Home For The Cold

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Depending on where you live, the weather may not be too extreme – at least not yet. If you've recently purchased your first home and have no clue how to prepare for an ice storm, a big freeze or even a huge snow blizzard, here are a few tips to help prepare your home for Jack Frost:

1. Make Sure You Prepare a Winter Emergency Kit.

You may have an emergency kit already prepared that consists of water, food and medication for all household members. However, do you have the type of items that you may be in need of during extreme winter conditions, such as hats, gloves, blankets, road salt/sand, heating fuel and snow removal equipment? If not, get them. Also, you will want to ensure you have a radio that operates off of batteries and receives broadcasts from the National Weather Service of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in order to stay current on all forecast developments.

2. Get Your Furnace Inspected.

There's not much worse than going to crank up your heat because of the cold to find that no hot air comes out of the vents. You should have your furnace inspected and serviced at least once annually, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). In fact, the Department of Energy says that you may want to consider having routine maintenance performed on your furnace in the fall. Don't forget to also ensure that your filter is checked on a monthly basis and changed every 90 days at minimum, as a dirty filter can cause the furnace to not work at optimal efficiency.

3. Repair Exterior Items and Clear with Care.

There are numerous exterior features of your home that may require some inspection, repair and replacement. This is particularly true if your region endures extreme below-freezing temperatures and considerable snowfall. Any railings, banisters and stairs outside of the home that may be a hazard in the event of snow or ice should be repaired, according to the III. If you need to clear your sidewalks and driveways of snow, make sure that you dress warmly (in layers), try to keep your clothes dry and work slowly. Take breaks whenever you begin to feel overwhelmed.

There are many ways you can get your home ready for the winter, but the aforementioned tasks are a few of the most important. If you need help with your furnace, speak to a professional HVAC expert, such as those at Bishop Plumbing, Heating and Cooling. For help repairing exterior features of your home, contact a general contractor who services your local area. 

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21 December 2015

plumbing mistakes - when to call in the pros

Do you know when to call a plumber? I had it in my head that plumbing was a simple system in my home that I could manage myself, but quickly learned otherwise. After completing a bathroom renovation myself and having a few of the water and drain pipe connections fail, I quickly learned that it was one job that I should have left to a professional. My website offers you simple solutions to small plumbing issues and a short guide to help you determine if your best option is to call in the professional plumbers. Hopefully, my mistakes will help you learn what not to do in your home.