It’s that time of year again… when the dreaded frosty nights threatens to keep us all indoors. Let’s face it, when Ireland gets a little bit of frost or snow, we really do go into panic. Maybe not all of us as some enjoy having the snow around, myself included. The only thing we don’t like is burst pipes, frozen water, country roads covered in snow or lack of heating.
Now is the perfect time to make sure you are set for the cold weather with your plumbing, inside and outside your home.
Make sure you service your current heating system. Boilers and chimneys should be serviced at least once a year to prevent fire and smoke damage. Ensure your boiler is heat effective and is working in perfect condition. You don’t want this to break down during a snow storm.
Install an emergency pressure release valve in your plumbing system. This will protect the system against increased pressure caused by freezing pipes and can help prevent your pipes from bursting.
Check your pipes! Pipes can be very susceptible to freezing in extreme temperatures. For exposed pipes in your attic or crawlspaces, add extra insulation around them.
It is advisable to learn where your pipes are located so you can shut of water quickly. If your pipes freeze, speed is critical. Know your pipes so you can inform your plumber or if you need to switch of your water you can do so. The quicker you can shut of water the better chance you have of preventing major damage. It is also vital to know where your pipes are located so you can check for cracks or leaks and repair them quickly.
Warm air rises and leaves the house through the roof, so you should have good insulation in your ceilings. Seal areas around the attic and plumbing vents that may be allowing warm air from the living space below to enter the attic. Hot air leaving from the roof space can also cause snow or ice to melt and refreeze on your roof which could eventually damage your roof.
Stoves & Fires
Burning firewood is a great way to save on energy costs. Store your firewood in a dry place at least 30 feet from your home to avoid a fire hazard. As mentioned, before it is essential to have your chimney serviced at least once a year.
If you don’t have firewood burning stove you can also look into electric fires. These are a great alternative and look the part.
Smoke and CM Detectors
With all stoves or fires you should always make sure you have a smoke detector and carbon monoxide detectors installed and working properly. Not only do residential fires increase at this time, but so does carbon monoxide poisoning – so regularly check that your detectors are in working condition.
When we think of salt, we usually think of the council salting the roads we drive on but you can also purchase smaller bags of salt for footpaths or driveways. Salt is handy to have around especially if you know there is going to be a lot of frost overnight. Also, a great way to help protect the elderly from falling on their footpaths around their homes.
OK, so you have your heating system sorted and set for the snow or hard frost. Now get yourself kitted out. Who doesn’t love getting into a warm cosy bed after a long day? Well if you haven’t experienced this, you need to. Heated blankets are the absolute essential on a cold night. Have your bed heated up just in time for sleep or leave it on a low heat for a couple of hours to you get warmed up. Just always make sure you do not leave it on more then the required hours and never leave it unattended if you are not in the house. Safety first.
You can purchase all your essentials for protecting your home at Grahams of Monaghan, with free advice to go with it.
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