Everyone knows the feeling of panic that comes over you when a home emergency happens. Hopefully, you’ve never experienced something life-threatening like a fire threat or similar events, but even small emergencies like a power or water outage can cause stress and put your daily schedule off. Luckily, it’s easy to prepare for some of these emergencies, but it’s important to know when you need to call professional help and not meddle yourself. Here are some of the most common household emergencies and how to get over them:
Broken toilets and clogged drains
If you’ve only got one bathroom in your home, then a clogged or broken toilet can become a problem pretty fast. First, let’s talk prevention: you need to be mindful of what you flush down the toilet and the drain. Remember that just because something says it’s flushable doesn’t mean it actually is. If it won’t dissolve in water, it can clog. When talking about drains, one of the most common issues is pouring in fats that can harden and clog the pipes. Always put oil, butter and fats in a separate container and throw them away with your trash. If a toilet or pipe clogs, you first want to grab a plunger and try unclogging it with that. If it doesn’t work, you can give chemicals a try. There are plenty of options when it comes to unclogging chemicals, from liquids to salts, but you do need to be careful as some of these chemicals can damage your pipes. If none of these work, then you need to call in the experts and let them figure out what the problem is.
When talking about a power outage, most people first think of no lights and no way to charge their phone. Granted, these are important things, but there are more serious issues with a power outage. Your heating or cooling system, water supply and many other essential components won’t be available. When your power goes out, first check if all of your fuses are in place, and if you know how to flip them back on – do it. However, if you’re not confident with fuses (especially if you have an old-time fuse box), stay away. Next, you want to check with your neighbors if they’re experiencing the same problem. If it’s a problem in the whole area, you can call the authorities and see what’s going on, but if it’s just your home, then you should call a local emergency electrician and wait for them to take a look. In case the situation prolongs itself, you need to have a power generator, flashlights, bottled water and non-perishable foods. If you have electrical doors, you need to have a way in and out of your home other than those.
Broken door or window
Things get broken. Whether it was a clumsy turn while moving furniture or kids playing with a ball outside on the street, now you have a broken window and you have to fix it fast, because it both breaks the isolation of the house, which can be tragic in extreme weather conditions, and it lessens the security of your home. You can find tutorials on how to replace a broken piece of glass, but if you’re not feeling too confident about it, you’re better off calling an expert. If the broken glass has an unusual shape, it might take some time for it to be cut, so in the meantime, barricade the hole with a piece of plywood or a similar sturdy material.
No matter what happens in your home, you are always the one that has to be in charge of fixing it, whether it means taking matters into your own hands or calling for help. Remember that the most important part is preventing emergencies and being prepared for them so that nothing that happens can set you back.