Feb 1, 2023 | Emergency Plan, Backup Plan, Cold Weather, Efficiency, Fireplace, Furnace, Gas Meter, Generator, Heat Pump, Heating System, Insulate, Lighter, Outdoor, Portable Heater

Although you no doubt diligently winterized your house last fall, it’s essential that, as a homeowner, you are prepared for any emergency situations involving your HVAC system. You can always depend on Hilliard-Dublin Heating & Air to provide 24/7 emergency services all year round; however, in the unlikely event of an unexpected snowstorm with blocked roads and power outages, how can you keep your family warm? Having a contingency plan for when the power goes out is an essential part of being prepared. Read on to learn about some ideas, as well as helpful tips and tricks you can use to make sure that whether or not your power gets cut off, you will be ready for any unexpected occurrences. 

Are You Prepared To Handle Any HVAC Emergencies This Winter?  

Establishing a backup plan can help alleviate potential stress and ensure that your home stays warm throughout the cold months.  

  1. Your Gas Meter: During winter months with heavy snowfall, it is crucial that steps are taken to guarantee that no ice or snow accumulation has formed over this component. Therefore, familiarizing yourself with its location can help avoid hazardous disasters from occurring and keep your family safe at home. As you diligently clear your walkways and driveway of snow, don’t forget to perform a quick assessment of the gas meter too. If you find any snow build up on top of it, gently brush off the snow or ice with a broom rather than using forceful kicks or heavy equipment as this could cause damage. Taking these simple steps will help ensure that everything is functioning properly and safely! 
  1. Your Heat Pump: To ensure your outdoor heat pump is running smoothly, schedule regular snow removal in your winter maintenance plan. Ohio winters can be unpredictable and sometimes long, drawn-out battles against Mother Nature, so checking regularly that no excess ice or snow has built up on the unit itself should not go overlooked. Carefully brush away any accumulations and create a safe space for proper drainage by clearing the area surrounding the heat pump so that when it begins to thaw, this will help avoid any potential damage caused by heavy buildup of ice. 
  1. Your Outdoor Vents: The outdoor vents of your HVAC system are as essential for its efficiency as any other component. If these get blocked or damaged, it can lead to decreased airflow and high energy expenses. Make sure you inspect your outdoor vents often – particularly in the winter months when snow is common so that they remain free from debris! Incorporating them into your usual snow-shoveling routine is one simple way to ensure they don’t slip past unmonitored. 
  1. Your Indoor Vents: It’s essential to keep your indoor vents free of any obstructions like furniture, rugs, and other household items to ensure proper airflow. Blocked airways can significantly reduce efficiency leading to potential damage to your HVAC system, so don’t forget about them! You will appreciate the unhindered airflow to warm up your home. 
  1. Your Fireplace: A functioning fireplace is a great asset to have in the home, and it can be especially useful if you ever experience an emergency, like your furnace going out or the power going out. To prevent yourself from freezing in such situations, make sure that you keep an emergency stockpile of firewood, fire starters, matches, or a lighter on hand for quick access. This way, when disaster strikes, you will be able to huddle around the warmth of your fireplace while waiting for help! Allocate this stockpile specifically for emergency situations, as you don’t want to run out when it counts the most. We can assure you that going searching for firewood during a blizzard is far from ideal, so trust us on this one and make sure your supply never runs dry! 
  1. Your Windows: This simple tip is beneficial despite any power outages. On cold winter days, make sure to close your blinds and window coverings for extra insulation; it helps keep the warm air inside! For extreme weather conditions, consider hanging up towels or blankets across windows for added insulation from the elements.   
  1. Your Doors: When the power unexpectedly goes out, or your furnace stops working, it is important to be mindful when you open exterior doors. If opened too frequently, cold air will enter, and warm air inside of your house will escape, thus making it more difficult for the remaining heat to stay within its walls. 
  1. Your Blankets: If you don’t know what to do with those additional blankets you have lying around the house, but don’t use on the regular, try gathering them up and storing them in a designated place. This way, they can be tucked away and easily grabbed for emergency use. In your time of need, you will find it beneficial to have them ready to grab from one designated area. 
  1. A Generator: If this is an option for you, having a backup generator is a fantastic solution to forming a foolproof plan for HVAC emergencies. 
  1. A Portable Heater: Portable heaters are another great idea! In the case your furnace suddenly starts to malfunction, having a couple of portable heaters on hand can prove beneficial. As a bonus, you can choose from a wide range of affordable options. 

Let’s be proactive and prepare our HVAC system for the unexpected. Join me in teaming up with Hilliard-Dublin Heating & Air so that regardless of what Old Man Winter throws at us, you’ll be ready! Call (614) 490-7520, or schedule an appointment online now by clicking here!