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Is Your Home Ready for Winter?

By Crystal Newton on Dec 18th, 2015 08:29 AM

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home safety tips, bates security

Did you see the flurries in Lexington today?  Winter is coming!  It can be a can be rough on your home, which is why you must make adequate preparations for colder weather. Here are a few things to keep in mind to ensure you are not caught off guard by the Bluegrass's fast approaching winter season.

Preventing Fires

More house fires occur in winter than in any other season. Whether it is malfunctioning Christmas lights or a wayward spark from a wood stove or fireplace, the chances of you experiencing a house fire are much greater during this time of year. To reduce your risk, you should:

  • Have your chimney thoroughly cleaned and inspected.
  • Keep a working fire extinguisher near your fireplace and make sure you are familiar with how to use it.
  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and replace batteries or worn out units as needed.
  • Do some general housekeeping to eliminate clutter so that if a fire does break out, it will be less likely to spread.

Save Energy

Colder weather can also mean higher energy bills unless you weatherproof your home by:

  • Caulking around windows.
  • Adding weather-stripping to gaps around your door frames.
  • Reversing the blades on your ceiling fans.
  • Vacuuming ductwork to allow for better airflow.
  • Repairing glass that has become broken or damaged.
  • Consider home automated thermostats to control your home's temperature when you are not there.

Now is also a great time to have your heating system cleaned and inspected. Not only will this help it operate more efficiently, but regular cleanings can also extend your unit’s life expectancy and reduce the number of repairs.

Outdoor Maintenance

It’s just as important to prepare the outside of your home as it is the inside. Some of the chores you should add to your to-do list include:

  • Trimming branches that overhang your roof or are very close to power lines. This will prevent them from causing damage to your roof or a power outage if you happen to experience an ice storm.
  • Checking your sidewalk for large cracks and/or potholes and filling them in. Doing so will make them much easier to keep clean, and will also reduce the odds of you falling should the surface become slippery.
  • Ensuring you have an adequate amount of outdoor lighting and that all fixtures are working properly.
  • Making sure gutters and downspouts are free of debris.
  • Removing garden hoses and storing them inside a garage or garden shed.
  • Covering all outdoor spigots with foam to prevent them from freezing.
  • Draining outdoor sprinkler systems, fountains, and garden ponds.
  • Inspecting handrails on your porch or patio, and tightening or repairing as needed.

Taking care of these things now will go a long way toward helping you survive winter weather. You may also want to consider a security system to monitor your home against fire and safeguard it against seasonal break-ins. To find a security system that is just right for you, please contact us.


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