When it’s 15 degrees F outside with a wind chill factor of below zero, do you really feel better when someone suggests: “It could be a lot worse!” We’re betting your answer (at least the polite one) would be “Go peddle your optimism elsewhere, pal.”

There, you’ve vented a little and now you feel better. But in that kind of extreme cold, even venting won’t make you feel better, warmer, or safer.

That’s why we urge you to follow these common-sense precautions when outdoor temperatures dip below freezing:

  • Dress in layers and cover as much skin as possible to prevent body heat loss, hypothermia, and frostbite.
  • Go outside only when you need to, and don’t over-extend the excursion.
  • Let your pets go outside only long enough to take care of business.
  • Equip your car with a flashlight, batteries, and blankets in case of a breakdown. Road salt, a shovel, anti-freeze, and other such items will make you even better prepared for trouble.
  • Keep an eye and ear out for emergency information and alerts.
  • Position indoor space heaters only on flat, level services and at least three feet away from flammable material. Turn them off if you’re leaving the room and before going to sleep.
  • Your oven was not meant to heat your home.
  • Don’t operate your portable generator or any other fuel-burning device unless the area is properly vented.
  • Make sure all embers in your wood burning stove are completely extinguished before going to bed.
  • Check in on elderly neighbors and relatives to ensure they’re alright.
  • Gather supplies in case you need to stay home for several days without power. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medications. Do not forget the needs of pets. Have extra batteries for radios and flashlights.

Perhaps your worst nightmare during a cold snap is a sudden loss of heat. To help keep your furnace or boiler running, even during the most trying of circumstances, contact Anthony’s Plumbing, Heating & Air to schedule a heating system check-up. It’s your best assurance of problem-free performance.