Things you should do NOW to protect your home during the freeze

Posted at 4:54 PM, Jan 06, 2014
and last updated 2014-01-06 17:18:30-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) - From your faucets to your pets, now is the time to make sure your house and animals are ready for Tuesday's record-cold weather.

Dogs and cats can suffer frostbite, just like humans.

"Especially areas like their toes and ears and tails can be sensitive to those kind of things, but hypothermia can affect them the same as us," Colonial Heights Veterinarian Hospital Stacy Riddle said.

When preparing your home for sub-freezing temperatures, start outside first.

"You should go around your house and make sure all your vents are closed to keep air from flowing under the house and freezing up pipes like this hose bib here," Calvin Adkins, with AA Plumbing, said. "Air could blow under it, freeze that pipe, so it's good to close all air gaps."

Once inside, focus on kitchens with faucets on an outside wall.

"It's good to open the cabinet doors at night, that will let a little heat there and sometimes you could maybe let the faucet run a little bit," Adkins said.

Experts advise using a supplemental heat source, like gas log, to help heat your home.

They suggest you avoid moving your thermostat up as temperatures go down.

"That's going to trip on the Auxilary Heat, because of the temperatures are going to drop so low tonight, by doing that, that's going to make your bill run up higher, it's not going to make your heat, any hotter," Larry Clarke, with Custom Aire Heating & Cooling, said.