Bitter cold temperatures in the Northeast have been relentless of late, and pellet burners are understandably cranking up stoves to keep warm. The colder the weather, the more pellets you’ll be burning. As your supply dwindles, make sure that you are ordering your pellets from somewhere that can get you your pellets quickly. (We’re very happy to report that in most Woodpellets.com service regions, delivery is now within one week!) Stay ahead of your supply level and order before you’re out, or close to being out.
With the cold weather comes some serious hazards both in the home and outside. Of course, there’s nothing to be done about weather – but you can never be too prepared!
Some helpful safety items you should have on hand include a First Aid kit, a sturdy trunk shovel, flashlights with extra batteries, emergency thermal blankets, hand and toe warmer packs, and ice traction boot attachments.
We are always reminding folks to order wood bricks/pellets early to be prepared for early cold and/or a long heating season. However, there are many more precautions to take, according to FEMA:
- Stay indoors during any storms or cases of extreme cold.
If you must go outside, wear several layers of loose-fitting, lightweight, warm clothing rather than one layer of heavy clothing. The outer garments should be tightly woven and water repellent.
- Wear mittens, which are warmer than gloves. Wear a hat, to prevent loss of body heat. Cover your mouth with a scarf to protect your lungs.
- Walk carefully on snowy, icy, walkways.
- Keep dry. Change wet clothing frequently to prevent a loss of body heat. Wet clothing loses all of its insulating value and transmits heat rapidly.
- Drive only if it is absolutely necessary. If you must drive: travel in the day; don’t travel alone; keep others informed of your schedule; stay on main roads and avoid back road shortcuts.
- Let someone know your destination, your route, and when you expect to arrive. If your car gets stuck along the way, help can be sent along your predetermined route.
- If the pipes freeze, remove any insulation or layers of newspapers and wrap pipes in rags. Completely open all faucets and pour hot water over the pipes, starting where they were most exposed to the cold (or where the cold was most likely to penetrate).
- Maintain ventilation when using kerosene heaters to avoid build-up of toxic fumes.
- Refuel kerosene heaters outside and keep them at least three feet from flammable objects.
- If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home, set to a temperature no lower than 55ºF.
Stay safe and be prepared!