While you may not have a job that requires you to work outdoors this winter, home maintenance has a way of pulling you outside. This season, it’s important to take extra safety precautions. Whether you’re outdoors for a few minutes or a few hours. Depending on the weather conditions, even a short amount of time can be dangerous. With these tips in mind, though, you should stay safe and warm.
Dress for the Occasion
In winter, that means layers! Not only does this provide additional protection against the cold, but it also allows you to stay comfortable by removing layers as temperatures fluctuate. Many people prefer tight-fitting wicking fabrics for the base layers, which allow moisture to escape from the skin. While this is a good start, these materials don’t always provide a lot of protection from the cold, so be sure to add more long-sleeves layers underneath a sturdy jacket. Try to minimize the amount of exposed skin with gloves, hats, and even a face mask if the weather is extreme.
Don’t be afraid to go inside and switch out your clothes if they become too damp. While they make waterproof options for most layers, that doesn’t really help you if the snow or ice slips inside. Your socks, in particular, should always be dry to protect your extremities properly. If you’re traveling, you may want to keep an extra pack of winter clothes in your vehicle for easy access.
You always hear about drinking plenty of water when it’s hot, but the cold can be just as dehydrating. People don’t always realize how much you can sweat under all those layers when you’re actively working outdoors. But your body may not communicate thirst as clearly in winter because of the cold temperatures. That doesn’t mean you suddenly stop needing basic nutrients from food and water! You just have to be more conscious of your intake. Don’t be afraid to add a little more substance to your diet this time of year, either. Even if you traditionally stay away from fats and carbohydrates, those elements help your body stay warm in winter.
Take Plenty of Breaks
No matter how well you follow the other tips, you’ll still need to plan plenty of breaks when working outdoors this season. When it’s really cold, your body needs regular exposure to warmer temperatures. It needs you to come inside and warm up for a few minutes. Even if you seem to stop feeling the cold at some point, that doesn’t mean you’ve suddenly acclimated. In fact, that numbness could be an indication of a serious problem, like frostbite. We recommend planning your breaktimes before you even go out. That way, you know they’re at regular intervals and you can just come inside when the scheduled time arrives.
We follow this same advice when it comes to working outside in winter! Although we handle indoor projects, like kitchen and bath renovations, as well as outdoor jobs, for decking and fencing, we go wherever our customers need us. Plus, we make safety a priority in each project, no matter what the season. If you need help around the home this winter, let us know! We’d be happy to assist you.