Winter is not far away, so it’s a good time of year to start winterizing your elderly relative’s home. Homeowners of all ages will avoid problems associated with cold weather when they take the time and effort to winterize. But when an elderly person is too ill or unstable on their feet to do the hard work of winterizing, what can they do?
Here are 10 tips on helping to winterize an elderly person’s home:
Look for Roof Leaks
A roof is supposed to protect the structure underneath, but if there are torn or missing shingles, cracks or other gaps, moisture can get inside quickly and cause widespread damage. Visually inspect the roof and if there is anything amiss, call in a professional.
Insulate Vulnerable Pipes
The freeze/thaw cycle can cause pipes to burst, so it’s a good idea to ensure that they remain protected from such extremes. Apply pipe insulation or else do what it takes to make the area less vulnerable to cold.
Secure Windows and Doors
The sealant around windows and doors can let lots of cold air into a home, and leak a lot of heated air outside. Prevent both by checking and replacing weather stripping, caulk and other weather barriers.
Check on the Fireplace
A blocked chimney can cause lots of trouble when a wood fire is lit for the first time. Likewise, gas fireplaces can be downright dangerous if they haven’t been inspected for a while. It’s worth it to call in a professional for an inspection in the fall before the fireplaces are actually used.
Winterize the Outdoors
It’s not just the house that needs winterized. Plan on prepping flower beds and garden spaces for winter sleep and put away lawn furniture, grills and other seasonal items. Disconnect all garden hoses from outdoor faucets and winterize the automatic lawn sprinklers or have professionals do it.
Get Ready for Snow and Ice
Snow removal equipment and tools should be cleaned and maintained well before the first snow. Snow blowers, shovels and more all need an inspection to ensure they are going to be up to the task of taking care of harsh weather conditions. Of course, it’s also a good time to stock up on a few bags of ice melt.
Just as you help your elderly relative take care of their physical needs like providing them with transportation, meals, hygiene and more, you are also responsible for where they are living. Even if you have an elder care agency that you work with to take care of the elderly relative, you are still ultimately responsible. Act now before the temperatures drop to ensure that your elderly relative is cozy and safe this winter.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Jackson, NJ, contact the caring staff at Care Street Home Care’s Ocean/Monmouth Division. Call today 732-719-7011.
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