Wow, it’s Cold!
Regardless of where you are in the United States, (except Florida, which we currently hate right now by the way) you are probably shivering because of this Polar Vortex. Every morning before work, you are putting on layer after layer of clothing until you are literally forced to waddle, and every time one of those commercials comes on for those cars where you can turn on the heat from a remote location, you are probably saluting them with a gloved middle finger. This freezing cold temperature is definitely unpleasant and although you may think it just affects you, your pets, plants, and the wild animals stuck outside (maybe Sarah McLachlan will write a song about them), it can potentially affect other areas of your life.
Freezing Temperatures and Your Home
The Polar Vortex garnered a lot of attention in the United States when record lows were being reported, massive snowstorms locked people inside their homes, and people began to realize that they needed much thicker jackets. A lot of people had never even heard the term “polar vortex” and most probably wish they never had. As an unpleasant side effect of the cold, people also noticed that some of their electronics, as well as other home related items, were at risk. Here is a short list of some of the items in your possession that could be at risk:
Yes, your beloved source for the latest shows, news, and drama could be affected by the cold. The freezing temperatures can easily knock out power grids and services, leaving you stuck with literally nothing to watch on the television. LCD televisions can also be damaged if exposed to the cold weather.
2. Air Conditioning
Outside air conditioning units could be covered in ice, which could easily damage parts. Wrapping or insulating outside units is always recommended!
3. Your cell phone
As towers turn to icicles, you can potentially lose cell phone service for extended amounts of time.
4. Your car
Besides the obvious risk of covering your car in tons of snow or forcing you to run outside and sit inside a freezing car for a long duration before it ever gets warm, there are other risks involved. Your tires could harden, motor oil thickens, your windshield could crack from significant amounts of pressure, and your engine block may also crack. Yikes!
Water pipes in your home are probably the most at risk. Leave cabinets open and wrap all exposed pipes with towels, blankets, or some form of insulation. Also, leave faucets on with a slow drip to prevent freezing. Keep in mind that frozen pipes can burst which can cause a lot of damage and a nasty repair bill! (Provided you can find a technician to come out in the cold!)
You may experience a loss of electricity during the cold if you have a significant ice or snowstorm. Ice and snow can pile up on transformers and lines, breaking and damaging them.
During this cold season, take a few extra precautions (especially when driving) and you will be just fine! Also, consider using your fireplace instead of the heater to conserve energy and lessen the hit to your electric bill.