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How to Prepare Your Home for Winter Ice Storms

Monday, November 30 2015 4:44 PM

This year we’ve already seen ice storms roll through the area and we’re sure to see more as the winter months progress. Is your home prepared? Here are some easy ways you can make sure your home is ready the next time an ice storm strikes the Kansas City area.

Winterizing Your Home

  • Insulate your walls, attic and garage to help keep freezing temperatures outside where they to winterize your home
  • Add caulking and weather stripping to your windows, and install storm windows to keep cold air out and your energy bills from skyrocketing.
  • Clear out your rain gutters to keep water from building up around your house or seeping into your foundation.
  • Repair any leaks in your roof and make sure to clear all nearby tree branches that could potentially fall on your house in the event of a storm.
  • Keep your furnace and chimney clean and have them inspected and maintained.
  • Help insulate your pipes by wrapping them with newspaper and keep your faucets at a trickle to prevent your pipes from freezing over and potentially bursting.
  • In case of a pipe burst, learn where and how to shut off all water valves in the house.
  • Vent all fuel-burning equipment to the outside of your home and keep them well clear of debris.
  • Observe general home fire safety rules like keeping fire extinguishers on hand and make sure everyone in your home knows how to operate them.
  • It’s a good idea to have your roof inspected for structural integrity in case snow and ice accumulates. Ice dams can occur on your roof that trap frozen water and could cause it to collapse if not properly supported.
  • Keep emergency supplies on hand in case of a power outage such as a battery-powered radio or TV, flashlights, blankets, extra batteries and emergency food and water.
  • If the power goes out, switch your lights and appliances to the “off” setting except for one or two lamps to avoid overloading your circuits when the power is restored.
  • Cover your outdoor plants and flowers to prevent wind damage and to keep their roots from freezing. Bring in any plants from outside that are able to be stored inside for the winter.
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