Making Your Home Safe for Winter

by Matilda Charles


Like it or not, winter is coming. Depending on where you live, you’ve

likely already felt the chill winds preceding the even colder weather

ahead. Two key elements of winter safety at home are warmth and adequate



Are you ready?


Staying Warm: If you live in your own home, when is the last time you had

your furnace inspected? If you can’t say it was this season, it’s time to

call for an appointment. These system checks should be done once a year

and generally include a new furnace filter.


Carrying a big blanket from room to room can be a tripping danger.

Instead, keep personal-size comforters in various places in your home,

especially your favorite chair. Check the bottoms of your slippers to make

sure they aren’t worn and slippery. Wear a favorite hat for additional

warmth, and consider a padded vest to keep your body’s trunk warm.

Adequate Lighting: Fading daylight can creep up on us. One of my friends

took a yard light and put it in the kitchen window to recharge in the sun

each day. When it becomes dark outside, the little light automatically

goes on. Another has put tiny automatic nightlights in a few electric

outlets. When the lighting is low, the lights automatically come on. These

serve as reminders to turn on more lights in the house.


Do you have candles handy for the times when the power goes out? If so,

throw them away! It’s too easy for lighted candles to fall over or catch

clothing on fire. Instead invest in a few flashlights or “dome” lights

that you can leave at various places in your home. Don’t forget a small

one for your pocket.


Matilda Charles regrets that she cannot personally answer reader

questions, but will incorporate them into her column whenever possible.


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(c) 2013 King Features Synd., Inc.

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