How to prepare your home for an incoming storm

How to prepare your home for an incoming storm
Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 6:32 PM EST
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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - Is your home prepared for what is on its way?

Freezing temperatures are soon to set in across Eastern North Carolina. Local experts shared some last-minute advice for you to protect the area you should be spending the most time in this weekend: your home.

Coupled with high precipitation chances, the weather conditions Friday and Saturday are likely to produce ice. Eastern Carolina hasn’t seen a system like this since around January of 2018.

If you find your pipes freezing up overnight, check your cabinets for a hairdryer.

“Just get it working and then leave it dripping so it won’t freeze back up,” Mark Gummeson, Eastern Plumbing technician explains.

Do not use open flames to heat your pipes.

Threats of power outages could make temperatures inside of homes close to freezing, but when trying to stay warm during an outage, “you certainly don’t want to use your stovetop,” Erik Heden, National Weather Service warning coordination meteorologist says.

However, you do want to have a backup, secondary heat source.

“If you have a generator, which a lot of us do, make sure that’s gassed up and it’s ready and it’s been tested,” Heden says.

You’ll also want to keep the generator in an open space, not in a garage or shed. This will make sure you are safe from a silent killer: carbon monoxide.

“We’ve had more deaths in the Carolinas because of that than we’ve had with direct deaths because of a hurricane, so it’s a real issue,” Heden says.

Although the day before a storm may be too late to completely insulate your home and pipes, there is something you can do to prevent a burst.

“Just letting a faucet drip a little bit, even on the hot side, will keep water going through it and prevent freezing up solid,” Gummeson says.

Before you go to bed on the night before a big weather system, make sure your devices are fully charged.

Ahead of ice and snow accumulation, clean out your gutters and trim away any overhanging weak or damaged tree branches.

Make sure everyone in your home knows where the main water valve is in case of a burst pipe.

Many plumbers will be on-call, 24 hours a day throughout the weekend. Write down their emergency line phone numbers in case you lose power or internet connection.

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