In terms of harsh weather, most regions of North America have had it easy so far this winter. But before you let this trend lull you into a false sense of security, be sure to take some time to put together a winter storm safety plan so that you’re prepared for the worst.
The safest place to ride out a harsh winter storm is usually your own home, as travel can be treacherous. And with frigid winds whipping around outside, it’s all the more important to make sure your home comfort systems are ready to keep you warm throughout the ordeal.
Before a storm arrives, it’s important to winterize your home. This includes tasks like cleaning your chimney, getting a furnace tune-up, adding insulation and sealing gaps in ductwork, windows and doors. If you have storm windows and doors, be sure to install them in advance of any serious winter weather.
Some winter storms can bring especially brutal temperatures. In these events, you might want to take extra steps to keep your home warm, such as placing plastic wrap on the inside of your windows. You should also gather lots of blankets and stock up on firewood if you have a fireplace or wood burning stove. If you leave your home to avoid the storm, you can turn the thermostat down, but don’t turn it off -- keep it set to at least 55 degrees to avoid damage to your home systems.
After you’ve taken steps to make sure your home will remain warm and comfortable throughout a severe weather event, consider some of the other ways you can prepare: