HOTLINE: Monday, Jan. 6

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On vacation here in sunny AZ while your home is freezing back in the Midwest or the East Coast?

Debbie Hernandez from Home Depot has some tips:

-If you have someone available, have them stay at the house and use it until you return. A lived in house is one of the best ways to prevent freeze damage!

-Send someone with access to your home (family member, friend) over to the house OR so they can just let a professional in to do any or all of the following:

-The heat should be on, but not too high, at minimum the heat should not be lower than 54 degrees, but optimally should be set around 60 degrees. Have a Smart Thermostat from Apple (The Nest) or from Honeywell installed. This way you can control your thermostat from anywhere with you Smart Phone, if you have one.

-Turn water off completely then open up all faucet and shower handles and flush all toilets, need to drain all water from all pipes, if you just turn water off, there's still water in the pipes that can freeze OR have someone consistently flushing the toilets and running all faucets and showers every 1-2 hours.

-Wrap pipes with pipe foam wrap, copper wire heating cable, towels, etc.

-Have someone snow blow or shovel front walkway, driveway, back walkways and lay salt or sand (more environmentally friendly) so you can get in the house when you home and also not slip and fall.