NORTHWEST TENNESSEE — The National Weather and West Tennessee Weather Online are forecasting bitter cold weather and possibly a slight accumulation of snow as Christmas approaches. Lows are predicted to be around 2 degrees on Friday night.
A strong arctic front will bring a frigid airmass into the Mid-South Thursday. Prepare for an extended period of sub-freezing temperatures as low as the single digits Friday through the weekend. Strong northwest wind is expected behind the front. Wind chill values will likely be well below zero at times.
Eddie Holmes with West Tennessee Weather Online forecasts the following:
Thursday night — A 60 percent chance of rain mixed with snow in the evening. Becoming all snow after midnight. Snow accumulation 1-2 inches. Blustery. Lows 0 to 5 above zero. Wind chills after midnight will be as low as 15 below zero.
FRIDAY — Partly sunny and blustery. Highs 10-15. Wind chills as low as 20 below zero.
Christmas Eve — Mostly sunny. Lows 0 to 5 above zero. Wind chills as low as 10 below zero in the morning. Highs near 20.
Christmas day — Mostly sunny. Highs in the mid-20s.
The National Weather Service predicts:
Wednesday — Partly sunny, with a high near 47. East northeast wind around 5 mph.
Wednesday night — Cloudy, with a steady temperature around 40. East northeast wind around 5 mph becoming south southeast after midnight.
Thursday — Rain, mainly after noon. High near 48. South southeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 80%.
Thursday night — Snow likely, possibly mixed with rain before midnight, then a slight chance of snow. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 4. Blustery, with a west northwest wind 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 40 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
Friday — partly sunny and cold, with a high near 14, breezy.
Friday night — Partly cloudy, with a low around 2.
Saturday — Mostly sunny and cold, with a high near 19.
Saturday night — Partly cloudy, with a low around 7.
Christmas Day — Sunny, with a high near 25.
Keep Water Pipes From Freezing
According to statefarm.com, the three central causes of frozen pipes are quick drops in temperature, poor insulation and thermostats set too low. You can prepare your home during the warmer months.
Insulate pipes. Pipe insulation in your home’s crawl spaces and attic helps even if you live in a climate where freezing is uncommon. Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing. Remember, the more insulation you use, the better protected your pipes will be.
Use heat tape or heat cables. Heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables can be used to wrap pipes. Be sure to use products approved by an independent testing organization, such as Underwriters Laboratories Inc., and only for the use intended (exterior or interior). Closely follow all manufacturer’s installation and operation instructions.
Seal leaks. Locate and thoroughly seal leaks that allow cold air inside. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents and pipes, and use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out.
Secure outdoor hoses, valves and faucets. Before winter hits, disconnect garden hoses and, if possible, use an indoor valve to shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets. This reduces the chance of freezing in the short span of pipe just inside the house.
Let water drip. A trickle of hot and cold water might be all it takes to keep your pipes from freezing. Let warm water drip overnight when temperatures are cold, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall.
Adjust the thermostat. Keeping your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night also reduces the risk of frozen pipes. During extreme cold, this also helps reduce the strain on the furnace.
Open cabinet doors. This allows heat to get to un-insulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
Rural residents with water wells should assure the water tanks have sufficient protection against freezing temperatures by wrapping in heat tape or insulation and leaving water dripping inside the house keep a constant flow of water.
Outdoor water hydrants should be covered with insulated covers or even newspaper wrapped in plastic to assure the cold air cannot get to the pipe.
Automobiles should have plenty of fuel, window-washing fluid, and battery power. Cold weather adversely affects cranking amps of a battery. Also, as air gets colder, one can notice a decrease in tire pressure.
If traveling on snow, be sure to carry an emergency kit of snacks, a drink and additional winter jackets, gloves, or blankets in case you are stranded.
Carroll County Electric Department offers these suggestions:
With extreme cold weather approaching this week, there are several no-cost and low-cost things people can do that make a big impact in their home’s ability to gain or retain heat. During winter months, TVA recommends setting your thermostat at 68 degrees. One’s thermostat is the easiest way to help control energy costs. On average, for every degree you turn down your thermostat you will see a three-percent savings on your electric bill. The following tips, and more, can be found at www.tva.com/energy/stay-warm-save-money.
Top 10 Tips for Staying Warm, Saving Energy this Winter
Let there be light — Keep your curtains open on the south side of the house and closed on the north during the day to trap the warmth from sunlight.
Family meals — Take advantage of the heat generated by cooking.
Close the damper — Don’t send warm air up the chimney. Make sure the fireplace damper is closed when not in use.
Decorate — Use area rugs if you have hardwood or tile floors to keep your feet warm.
Create breathing room — Keep weeds and debris away from the outdoor unit of your heating system.
And if you want to invest in some home improvements, these tips may be helpful:
Keep it clean — Change air filters monthly. Dirty filters force your heating system to work harder.
Seal it up — Caulk and weather-strip around windows and doors.
Stop the gaps — Install insulating gaskets to exterior light switches and electrical outlets to stop air leaks.
Bundle up — Insulate heating and cooling ducts and repair any air leaks.
Lay it down — Add insulation to your attic, crawlspaces and any accessible exterior walls.
Want more information on how to make your home more energy efficient and even earn incentives for making energy-smart upgrades? Visit www.energyright.com to learn more.
Customers should also be aware of potential scams this winter! Scammers utilize fear and a sense of urgency to prey upon intended victims. A common scam is demanding payment with a threat of a power disconnection if unpaid. Anyone who receives a suspicious call, text message, or email demanding payment of an electric bill, should call the Carroll County Electric Department at 731-986-8284 or (800) 287-6302.
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