Four Little-Known Facts About Holiday Home Problems

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With the holidays nearly upon us, our schedules are about to get busier, our lives are about to get more hectic, and your home is more than likely about to experience a problem. That last thing may be the most concerning to the average homeowner: with so much going on, who has time to get something repaired or replaced? However, just because the holiday season is here doesn’t mean that wear and tear make your home take a break from getting fixed. In fact, the added use the average home sees during the colder and more activity-packed holiday season actually makes certain problems more likely.

In this blog, we’ll talk about four different facts that contribute to problems with your home around the holiday season. If you want to stay ahead of these problems, read on!

Fact: You’ll Lose a Ton of Heat Through Air Leaks in Doors & Windows

Winter means colder temperatures, and colder temperatures mean people all across the northeast fire up their heaters to try and stay comfortable. However, your heater will only work well if your home is able to contain the heat, and the average home loses the vast majority of its heat through air leaks found in places like your doors and windows.

Under normal circumstances, these openings are insulated via weather stripping, a flexible rubber or plastic part that bends to create a tight air seal. Over time, this seal decays and forms cracks that allow air to escape. Even a small air leak can cause a dramatic change in your indoor temperature in a shorter amount of time, and that means more cycling, more energy used, and more money out of your pocket. Before the weather gets too cold, take this opportunity to check your weather stripping around your home and replace any locations where it has become damaged.

Fact: Black Friday Is the Busiest Day of the Year for Plumbers

This comes as a shock to most people, but this is 100% true! The reason: garbage disposals. While those who host Thanksgiving celebrations and festivities at their homes do sometimes encounter problems with things like toilets, faucets, or drains, the overwhelming majority of the calls are for garbage disposal problems. And here’s the other thing that surprises people: the overwhelming majority of garbage disposal issues are preventable.

If you want to avoid a garbage disposal nightmare this Thanksgiving, be careful what you put down the drain. Avoid stringy foods like asparagus or corn husks, starchy foods like potato peelings or pieces of bread, or fatty foods like grease or oils, often which come from meat dishes. If you’re ever in doubt, simply throw it in the trash and toss the trash in your main bin. You’ll be far happier not having to deal with a pesky clog or jammed garbage disposal on Black Friday.

Fact: Holiday Lights Cause an Estimated $8.9 Million per Year in Property Damage

The National Fire Protection Agency has found that holiday lights or decorative lighting are responsible for an average of around 150 house fires per year, equating to nearly $9 million in damage. While faulty lights or cheap manufacturing on some lights does account for some of these issues, many of these fires are started due to outdoor lighting issues. Using electricity outside is safer today than it has possibly ever been, but it’s still not a risk-free activity.

If you’re going to be doing outdoor decorating, make sure your decorations and your extension cords connecting them to power are all outdoor-rated. Never use an indoor extension cord for outdoor use. Also, make sure your lights are on a timer so they don’t run all night long. This not only saves you energy and releases you from the hassle of remembering to plug them in and turn them off but also prevents extended hours of use from possibly causing one to spark a fire. Finally, never staple holiday lights to your home—staples can have sharp edges, and sharp edges can penetrate through wire shielding, creating a short that sparks a fire.

Fact: A Dormant Heater Doesn’t Stay in the Same Condition

Just because your heater is shut off for the summer doesn’t mean that it’s going to stay in the same condition. As the days go by, wear and tear will still slowly set in and make it difficult for your heater to function optimally. This wear and tear is notorious for causing breakdowns in systems the first time the heater comes back on after being dormant for the summer season. When you first fire up your heater, parts are often stiff from not having moved in some time, which causes strange noises, smells, and generally inefficient operation. Do yourself a favor this winter: before you fire up your heater for the first time, have your system professionally maintained. Your system and your wallet will both thank you.

Whether it’s a plumbing problem, heating and cooling repair, or an issue with your water quality, trust EnviroSafe Plumbing, Heating, Air Conditioning, and Water Treatment to get it resolved! Contact us today.

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