Although the onset of winter brings with it the holidays, family gatherings, fires in the fireplace, and hot chocolate, it can also wreak extreme havoc on your home. Here are eight tips to keep your home and family safe:
1. Home Security
Although Home Alone is a classic Christmas movie that is fairly unrealistic, the idea that burglars are scoping neighborhoods for empty homes holds a lot of truth. With all of the traveling that happens around the holidays, burglars are on high alert and are looking for home targets. Local Home Security is a wise idea to invest in this holiday season in order to keep your home safe and sound during your holiday travel plans.
2. Heating System
Fires are a common occurrence during the winter, usually due to a faulty heating system. Regardless of how little or often you use your furnace heating system furnaces do require annual checkups. Whether you heat with natural gas, oil, propane, or wood, your furnace, stove, chimney, and duct system should be thoroughly inspected.
Although candles yield a warm, intimate touch to the home during the holidays as well as eliciting festive scents, candles are one of the number one sources for house fires during the holiday season. Place candles in areas away from flammable materials, and be sure to cut the wicks down. And, never leave an open flame unattended.
A leading cause of accidents is ice. Whether it’s ice on the road, your driveway, or your entryway steps, ice is a dangerous hazard. Spread bags of salt or sand over the icy areas around the outside of your house to avoid slipping and possibly seriously injuring yourself or your family and friends.
5. Snow Shoveling
Although shoveling snow can be a good workout, if you haven’t shoveled snow in a while, or have pre-existing health problems, be careful when shoveling snow, as this physical exertion can lead to a risk of heart attack. Statistically, heart attacks happen more frequently in the morning, which is when most people are shoveling out of necessity.
6. Snow Blowers
Similarly to shoveling snow, using a snow blower can also lead to health problems such as heart attack and serious hand injuries. If you lead a more sedentary lifestyle, be careful about this activity, as it can be extremely strenuous on your health.
Whether your tree is fresh or artificial, it’s important to choose one that will not pose a fire hazard. When purchasing a fresh tree, look for one that is dark green with no brown edges with needles that are resistant to falling off. When purchasing an artificial tree, choose one that is fire resistant.
When stringing lights on your tree or around your house, a good rule of thumb is to use no more than three sets of lights for each extension cord. If you’re using old light strands, check to make sure there are no frayed or exposed wires.
Taking these safety precautions will allow you to enjoy your holiday season!