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Protecting your Home and Car against freezing temps

From CNN, taken from:


Story by: Alexandra Field, CNN

All across the country, people are preparing for bone chilling temperatures. An arctic cold front is expected to send temperatures plunging 30 to 50 degrees below average.
Folks are bracing for the cold and experts say it’s worth giving your home a once-over and stocking up your car.
“We’ve been dealing with frozen pipes. That’s always an issue. This morning a lady called saying her pipe was frozen,” says Robert Leopoldi at Leopoldi’s Hardware in Brooklyn, New York.
Below freezing temperatures can lead to big problems, so do a little planning. One suggestion, run your water frequently as temperatures fall and protect your pipes beforehand.
“We have these electric cables that you plug-in and you run it along the pipe to insulate the pipe. What it does is keep the heat on the pipe,” says Leopoldi.
Electric heaters can add some warmth to your house without overworking your furnace.
But insulation is the best way to stay warm, save energy and save money. Spray foam gets the job done quickly.
Leopoldi says it fills gaps and can go in doorways, around molding, and around pipes to fill any space. Also, plastic sheets can be used to cover drafty windows and they come in all sizes.
With historic lows setting in across the Midwest and sub-zero temperatures are forecast for the south and northeast. The American Red Cross is focused on the dangers of driving. Here are a few tips:
*Pack a shovel to dig yourself out.
*Have sand on hand
*Bring a blanket
*Avoid driving without a fully charged cell phone
Don’t forget extra antifreeze and to get your driveway fit for record lows, Leopoldi says skip the rock salt and opt for calcium chloride, it’s worth paying more.
“It melts at lower temps. It doesn’t crack the side walks. It doesn’t leave the white marks all over it,” he says.

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