Winter is coming. Some states have already seen snow cover the ground. People have even seen the season's first Nor'easter. It's a good time to refresh winter safety tips with your aging parents.
Inspect the Furnace or Boiler
If your parents' heating system hasn't been cleaned and inspected, it's time. At the very least, a safety inspection must be done to look for leaks. The exhaust vents need to be checked to make sure they're connected and not rusted or cracked.
Test Carbon Monoxide Detectors and Smoke/Fire Detectors
Test all of the carbon monoxide and smoke/fire detectors. If the batteries haven't been changed recently, make sure to install new ones. If any don't work, replace them. Check the date code on the back of the units. If they're past date, you also need to replace them.
There should be detectors in main living areas, each floor of the house, and in or close to the bedrooms. If you're not replacing detectors, check to make sure there are no recalls. Some units have faced recalls in the past year or two, so it's important to replace or fix any detectors that have active recalls.
Set Up the Car With a Winter Safety Kit
Do your parents still drive? If they do, they need to prepare their car. The back seat or trunk should have non-perishable foods, blankets, a shovel, and flares. Tires need to be checked for proper tread. Have winter tires installed in snowy/icy regions.
Antifreeze should be checked to make sure it meets the winter climate. Oil changes are also important. Switch to a windshield washer fluid that handles below zero temperatures. Rubbing alcohol added to the current washer fluid can help prevent lines from freezing up.
Home Supplies to Keep on Hand
If snow builds up, someone needs to make sure exhaust and dryer vents are not blocked. Shovels must be available for this and clearing sidewalks, doors, decks/porches, and the driveway.
Should the power go out, your parents will need extra blankets, non-perishable foods, flashlights, a battery-powered radio, and water. In the bitter cold, a power outage may require them to move to a shelter or another person's home if there is no heat source.
If you can't check in on your parents regularly during the winter, make sure someone can. Home care services like companionship and transportation are important. This is a good way to have someone stop by and make sure your parents are okay during and after a storm. Your parents won't have to drive on wintery roads. Call us today to learn more.
IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED-ONE ARE CONSIDERING HOME HEALTH CARE IN KNIGHTDALE, NC, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT SENIORS HELPING SENIORS TODAY. CALL (919) 761-5346.