Are you ready for winter? You better be – winter weather can be rough. So, you need to prepare yourself for the hostilities it brings with it. The winter cold in particular can cause a number of health problems if mishandled.
But it is not just the temperature in your home you need to worry about, but also the water you need when taking showers, and the means to get around when the roads are sometimes impassable. Our bodies are not designed to handle the temperature extremes of the winter weather, and that means you have to be especially vigilant during this season.
1. Get a Tankless Water Heater
Why tankless? For one, this type of water heater can provide an endless supply of hot water, unlike a tank-type water heater. The last thing you want when you step into the shower is getting drenched in freezing cold water because someone else used up all the hot water, which often happens when using a tank-type water heater.
Other benefits of tankless water heaters over their storage type alternatives during winter weather include greater reliability, energy efficiency, and a greater life of service. A hot shower is a great way to get yourself warm if nothing else seems to get the job done. Just be sure to get the best tankless water heater on the market to get a premium usage experience.
2. Ensure Your Pipes are Insulated
There are two reasons you should insulate your water pipes. First of all, this ensures that heated water does not lose much of its heat as it flows through the house. During the winter cold, hot water can lose its heat pretty fast if the pipes are not insulated. Secondly, insulated pipes do not suffer the risk of bursting due to freezing.
3. Avoid Winter Storms
A lot of people get injured during winter, or worse. Part of the reason is that some get caught up in winter storms, while some decide they are match for this hostile weather condition. To avoid facing similar challenges, you should avoid going out during winter storms.
But generally speaking, going out during the winter season should be avoided unless absolutely necessary. And even then, you should wear warm clothing and a waterproof coat to stay warm and dry.
4. Keep Your Home Properly Heated
The need to keep your home properly heated cannot be overemphasized. This is especially important when you have a pre-existing health condition or are over 65 years old. The low temperatures can result in increased blood pressure, chest infections, and even conditions like hypothermia. Experts recommend that you maintain a temperature of at least 18 degrees Celcius if you want to enjoy your time indoors during the winter weather.
5. Wear Appropriate Clothing
Even as you ensure that your house is warm enough for the winter, and that you have enough energy supplies to give you hot water and a warm and cozy living space, you should also work on getting warm clothing. You might not necessarily need it when indoors if the house if properly heated, but you will occasionally need to go out.
Under those conditions, wearing the right clothing is paramount so that you are not exposed to the extremely cold outdoors weather, which can be quite dangerous to your health. You should wear several layers of loose warm clothing when going outside; and also ensure you get rid of any piece of clothing that gets wet as soon as possible.
6. Get a Portable Generator
With the winter storms and the blizzards, it is easy to suffer power outages because of winter weather. For this reason, you should get a portable generator to get you through such hardships. Remember that heat is essential during winter for your health’s sake.
However, even as you get a portable generator, be sure to keep it away from living areas to reduces chances of carbon monoxide poisoning. Ideally, it should be in an isolated structure with proper ventilation.
7. Clean the Roof and the Gutters
Debris and moss on a roof can result in roof shingles getting ruined. That is because they allow the pile up of moisture and ice. The consistent dampness can cause the roof to wear out; and that can end up causing leaks. These leaks can result in the dampness getting into your house, which is especially dangerous during winter. So, you should ensure that your roof, as well as you gutters are properly cleaned out in preparation for the winter.
8. Take Enough Fluids
Ironic as it may seem, it is easy to get dehydrated during cold weather. But in addition to consuming enough fluids, you should also take warm fluids to keep your body heat up. Nevertheless, you should avoid coffee and alcohol, they don’t go well with cold weather.
The coffee has caffeine which can worsen the symptoms of hypothermia, while alcohol can make you more susceptible to the negative effects of cold, especially when you go outside. Furthermore, these beverages dehydrate the body. Some of the liquids you can take include juice, broth and hot drinks.
9. Work Out
The winter season gives people a perfect reason to take things easy, especially when it comes to physical workouts. But you should not fall into this trap. In fact, the winter weather is a perfect time to kick your workout regimen up a notch as you will need the fitness more during this time of the year.
The exercises can also help you stay warm and upbeat as you go through the prolonged days of forced rest and relaxation. Exercise is also good for the immune system, which is a good thing because winter season brings with it health issues like flu.
10. Winterize your Car
Ensuring your car is in perfect working condition is essential at all times, especially during the winter. Often times, a car is needed to whisk you and your family away when conditions get intolerable or when you need to get more winter supplies. For this reason, you should ensure that your car has antifreeze, a heater, a defroster, good windshield wipers, and tank with enough gas. While at it, you should get jumper cables, an ice scraper, and a winter car emergency kit.
The cold winter weather is not without its challenges, but there is plenty you can do to keep yourself warm, comfortable, and healthy. Above are some ways you can prepare yourself for the challenges of this cold season.
Having enough hot water, from a reliable tankless heater, wearing appropriate clothing, working out, taking hot drinks and preparing your car for the winter are some of the things you can do in readiness for the winter weather.