The Eldercare Locator has produced a free brochure full of tips on preparing a home for winter weather and saving money on energy costs.
For those living independently, maintaining their health and safety this winter is imperative. The brochure, “Winter Warmth and Safety: Home Energy Tips for Older Adults,” provides valuable information to older adults, their families or caregivers on how to best deal with cold weather challenges.
Some of the tips include:
• Seal air leaks and insulate windows around the home.
• Install a programmable thermostat to make the home more energy efficient.
• Insulate water pipes to avoid freezing and bursting.
• Take advantage of local heating assistance funds and utility no-cutoff programs.
• Do not use your stove or oven to heat your home. Keep batteries and battery-powered flashlights available and, when needed, use flashlights instead of candles.
• Check to make sure that electrical cords on space heaters are not damaged and do not pose a tripping hazard.
• Make sure that smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are installed and working properly.
A Winter Emergency Plan
Extreme weather conditions can sometimes require emergency action. Here are some suggestions on how to prepare for winter emergencies:
• Identify temporary living arrangements in case you are unable to stay in your own home and have a plan for getting there.
• Keep in touch with family and friends. Ask someone to check on you daily—especially if you live alone.
• Plan for your medical needs. Have extra medications on hand or identify a pharmacy that will deliver them to you.
• If you or a loved one in your home has medical equipment, be sure you know how to maintain it or move it in an emergency.
• Share emergency contact information ahead of time with everyone who would need it.
For a free copy of the brochure, call the Eldercare Locator at (800) 677-1116 or download it at www.eldercare.gov. The Eldercare Locator is a public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging, administered by the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging.
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