Preventing Holiday Mishaps to Your Home
Stuff happens to your home, especially during the holiday season when temperatures drop, packages are delivered, and decorations are hung with glee. While all the festivities of the holiday season are enjoyable, the potential hazards that come with them are not. According to a survey conducted by SimpliSafe, fires, frozen pipes, and porch pirates (package thieves) are among the most dreaded holiday mishaps. Despite these concerns, only 35% of American adults are worried about one of these incidents happening to their home, resulting in a large amount of vulnerable homes. Here are some easy tips to prepare for the holidays to prevent these mishaps, allowing you to focus on what really matters this holiday season.
Old appliances, unattended stoves, and holiday decorations are all common sources of fires during the holidays. In fact, more than 70% of the Simplisafe survey respondents said they have set off a smoke alarm while cooking a holiday meal! It is important to never leave gas or electric stoves unattended while cooking meals and to always keep an eye on food in the oven. If you decide to deep-fry a turkey or ham for your holiday meal, it is critical to make sure it is properly thawed. If meat is not thawed before being placed into a deep fryer it can explode and cause oil burn injuries and an oil fire. In addition to cooking, holiday lights, candles, wreaths and tinsel should all be placed around the house in caution. It is recommended to keep all decorations at least 3 feet away from heat sources, and all electric decorations should be unplugged at night. Another crucial element is to make sure your Christmas tree is watered everyday. Be sure that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in working condition as well.
Drops in the temperature can cause serious pipe damage, which can result in a burst or leak. While older homes are more at risk for frozen pipes, you should keep an eye on indoor pipes in cold garages, attics, and basements. To prepare for potential mishaps, experts recommend installing a temperature sensor to monitor for low temperatures and a water sensor to immediately identify leaks. Though temperatures may not quite reach low enough to freeze pipes along the Grand Strand, it is better to be safe than sorry this holiday season.
Between Thanksgiving and New Years, the USPS estimates it delivers more than 13.2 billion packages! More packages means more opportunities for porch pirates to strike, especially with an increase in online shopping. According to the Simplisafe survey, almost half of respondents said they have had a package stolen from their front porch or home. To prevent package thieves from ruining your holiday spirit, experts recommend installing a doorbell camera to monitor your front porch. It is also a good idea to keep an eye on packaging delivery updates, and plan to be home when large, expensive items will be delivered. If you can’t be home to watch for deliveries, have packages delivered to a trusted friend or neighbor’s house, or schedule an in-person pickup at the store. These practices will help prevent porch pirates, but in the event that your packages do get stolen, you can submit a stolen package claim with companies like Amazon and FedEx.
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