The fall season has not officially started yet, but the cold weather has really done. Temperatures have dropped into the 30s at night and made many homes too cold for young children or the elderly the next morning. Many will reluctantly turn on the heat for the first time since last spring. Before you do that, there are a few things you should check to make sure your house is ready. FEMA also has more winter storm tips.
The oven must be inspected for any problems before switching it on for the first time. If you use oil, make sure the oil tank is full. If you use natural gas, make sure that the gas line that enters the house is properly open. Make sure the pilot is properly lit. Remove any debris from the oven and pans that may become flammable. The Home Safety Council describes other safety tips for heating methods.
Once the oven has been inspected, it is time to ensure that the housing is sealed to successfully contain the heat. Now it's time to take out some fans or air conditioners in windows. Check all windows and make sure they are closed and have no cracks or holes. Be sure to check basement or sliding doors that may have drafts and seal them properly.
To get the most out of your heating system, a smart thermostat is a must. These programmable thermostats can be set according to a daily schedule to keep the house warm when occupied and to be turned off during hours when no one is home or sleeping under warm protection.
Carbon Monoxide Warning
Finally, before turning on the heat in your house, it is wise to install a carbon monoxide detector near the oven. If the oven does not work properly, it can leak toxic amounts of carbon monoxide into the house, creating a dangerous situation. Since carbon monoxide has no odor, it is basically impossible to identify without a detector. Many carbon monoxide detectors are inexpensive and can be connected to an electrical outlet.
Turn on the heat
After following these steps, you are ready to turn on the heat and enjoy a warm and cozy winter. If you are unsure of any of these steps, you can contact a professional plumber who can perform a routine maintenance check on the oven for you and make sure it works properly.
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