Last year Washington State had a mild winter, so plan for a harsh winter with all types of extremes this year. Here are some tips to protect you, your family, and your home before the severe weather hits.
- If you have an electric garage door opener, locate the manual over-ride.
- If the power goes out, turn off the stove and other natural gas appliances.
- During a windstorm, go to a lower floor in a multi-story house to avoid falling trees, branches, or debris.
- Make sure you have battery-operated flashlight and you have extra batteries. Candles can cause fires.
- Turn off all lights and electrical appliances except for the refrigerator and freezer. When the power comes back on it may have pikes or surges that can damage your appliances and electronics. When the power comes back on, the fridge/freezer will come on automatically and hopefully you will not have lost a lot of food.
- Be sure to unplug computers to protect them from possible surges when power is restored.
- Conserve water, especially if you use a well for your water needs.
Winter Storms – Ice and Snow
- Wrap pipes, especially those near outer walls or attics/crawl spaces. Remember, broken pipes can lead to a huge repair bill.
- Have rock salt or sand handy for traction with ice and snow.
- Be sure to fill up your gas and propane tanks before the snow starts.
- NEVER use a BBQ in the house to cook or heat your home. BBQr’s can explode and/or cause carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Educate yourself on how to shut off your home’s gas, water, and power.
- Get your heating system checked before the winter starts.
- Change your furnace filters and change the batteries in the thermostat and smoke detectors.
- To avoid damage from power surges, install a whole-house surge protection system in your home.
- By installing a GenTran near your electrical panel, you can plug your generator directly into the GenTran and flip the breakers "on" that you want running such as the well pump, freezer, fridge, and some lights.
The two home service companies we recommend:
For Heating Needs For Electrical Needs
One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning Mister Sparky
To help you formulate a plan, ask yourself these 7 questions on how much your home is losing energy:
- How much money do you spend on energy?
- Where are your greatest energy losses?
- How long will it take for an investment in energy efficiency to pay for itself?
- Do the energy saving measures provide additional benefits that are important to you (for example, increased comfort from a warm home in the winter)?
- How long do you plan to own your home?
- Can you do the job yourself or will you need to hire a contractor?
- What is your budget and how much time do you have to spend on maintenance and repairs?
Next step is to assign priorities to your energy needs so you can form an efficiency plan.
Your plan should provide you with a strategy for making smart home improvements. These home improvements will increase your home’s energy efficiency to save you the most money.
Did you know that your heating system is the largest appliance using the most energy on your power bills? Sometimes it is easier to have a professional come out and give advice on how to make your home more efficient. You can have One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning's Comfort Advisor conduct an energy audit on your home for free. After gathering information about your home, the Comfort Advisor will give you a list of recommendations for cost effective energy improvements to enhance your comfort and safety. They will also calculate the return on your investment in high-efficiency equipment compared to standard equipment.
Google Heating Olympia or Heating Tacoma to find your local energy expert in your area OR CALL One Hour at 888-389-5488 to have a comfort advisor do an energy audit on your home.