With the forecast of freezing temperatures sweeping across the nation, we thought we would provide you with some helpful tips on how to stay warm should the power go out. While regular maintenance is the best way to ensure a warm winter, none of that matters if you don’t have power to your furnace.
One of the easiest ways to stay warm is to bundle up. Dress in layers and have plenty of blankets on hand. If you have small children, be sure to check their hands and feet regularly to make sure they are staying warm. Infants and toddlers won’t be able to tell you that they are getting cold so you will have to check for them.
Gathering the family together in one room is also an easy way to stay warmer. Our bodies give off heat naturally and, in this case, the more the warmer! If you have a room with a fireplace that would be an ideal place to gather. You can close the doors to the rest of the house and conserve the heat to that room.
Lighting a fire in your fireplace is an excellent source for heat but, if you haven’t used your fireplace in a year or more and haven’t had the chimney cleaned in a year, you will want to be very careful. Creosote is a byproduct of burning wood and it can collect on the chimney walls and catch fire. Birds can also build nests that can catch fire as well. Listen for loud cracking, popping or a roaring noise, excessive smoke, or a strong odor. These can all be signs of a chimney fire. If your confident in your fireplace, just remember to always open the flu when lighting the fire and use a fire screen.
Other heating sources include kerosene or propane heaters. These work extremely well in small spaces but can be dangerous. They can be hot to the touch and will quickly burn if they are touched. For this reason, keep all objects away from the heater and close to a window that can be cracked open to reduce dangerous fumes. ALWAYS follow manufacture instructions for use and safety.
There are other methods found on the internet you can use to stay warm. Soapstone heaters, heated rocks and DIY heaters using tea lights and small flowerpots are all popular options and can be found by searching the internet. Whatever method you choose to stay warm, always practice safety and be aware of little ones. Keep your phones charged or have a power bank available so that if you do need emergency help you have a way to call.
Quigley is here if the problem resides in your furnace and not the power. We have skilled, professional technicians who can diagnose and fix whatever problem you’re having with your HVAC.