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Winter has arrived. Are you prepared?

Every time the seasons start to change, it’s always a good idea to double check your preparations. For folks in more northern states, preparing for winter is critical—especially with predictions for a harsh weather this year. But even in milder climates, a winter storm can be devastating, which is why it’s important to prepare now, before the weather turns.

Below, we’ve created a checklist to help you make sure you have everything covered. While this is a pretty thorough list, you should consider your own individual needs as well to be even more thorough.

Check & Double Check Your Home

Your home is your best defense against the fickle mistress of winter. Making sure the structure is sound and secure not only prepares you for harsh weather, but can also save on your energy bills. Here are some tips to make sure your home is prepared for winter:

  • Make sure windows are sealed, caulking and adding insulation if necessary
  • Have a professional ensure roof, ceilings, gutters and chimney are in sound and working order
  • Test all locks, clean and lubricate
  • Ensure enough stock of snow removal supplies and gear (shovels break; keep extra)

Heat, Light and Fuel

If your home loses power, it’s practically useless for protecting you from the world outside. That’s why every home needs alternative sources of fuel for heat, light and other survival needs. That’s why you need to do and stock these things:

  • Test generator, check fuel supply
  • Check furnace filters, replace if necessary
  • Stock up on well-seasoned wood, if you have a fireplace
  • Always maintain a half tank of gas in your car plus extra gas at home
  • Emergency candles for power outages
  • Flashlight

Food Storage

Winter storms have the ability to trap you in your home or neighborhood. Road closures would make it impossible to do grocery shopping. This is why having an ample food supply is one of winter’s biggest keys.

  • Calculate at least 3 servings per day per person
  • Enough to last at least 3 months
  • Keep an alternative stove with fuel
  • You want hot comforting meals that are easy to make


For the same reason as food, you want to ensure the ability to have plenty of clean, safe water if you’re in the middle of a winter emergency. You could be trapped. The pipes could freeze. Melted snow could be contaminated. That’s why we recommend a powerful and long-lasting filtration system for every home, along these guidelines:

  • Enough for a gallon per person per day
  • Same as with food, at least three months’ worth
  • Water quality is easily contaminated during and after winter storms—make sure you have the ability to filter as many impurities as possible

Gear for Winter

Because snow and ice can make everyday tasks more difficult, it’s important to have the right gear to face the most brutal conditions. Some gear you might consider:

  • Axe or Hatchet
  • Solar or crank-powered emergency radio
  • Shovels
  • Ice picks
  • Ice cleats for boots
  • Lighters and other fire starting tools
  • Waterproof winter clothing and boots

Prepare Your Vehicle

Finally, you’ll want to prepare your vehicle before the weather turns. Getting stuck in your car is very dangerous, so this is an absolute must. Here’s what you need in your car:

  • New wiper blades, snow tires or chains
  • Keep at least 72 hours of food
  • Extra gloves, hat, snow brush and blanket in every car
  • Keep water or a portable filter
  • Make sure coolant levels are topped off and properly mixed to avoid freezing

Relax and Rest Assured

Once you have everything in place, it’s time to rest assured knowing you are ready for the worst winter can brew up. It’s the most relaxing feeling in the world.  

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