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HomeAdvisor Offers Tips For Keeping Homes Safe During The Holiday Season

Broken Kitchen Appliances, Dirty Chimneys, Backed-up Garbage Disposals Rank as Top Home Issues during the Winter Months

GOLDEN, Colo., Nov. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Plumbing and appliance emergencies are the most frequent service requests during the holiday season according to HomeAdvisor, a leading, free website that connects homeowners with pre-screened service professionals and offers a suite of tools for home repair and improvement projects.  Kitchen appliances, chimneys, furnaces and garbage disposals are especially prone to malfunction during the hectic holiday season. HomeAdvisor's Home Improvement Expert and DIY Network host Amy Matthews offers useful tips to help homeowners prepare their homes for the winter season.

"The holidays can be as stressful as they are joyous, especially if an unexpected home repair emergency occurs," said Amy Matthews. "HomeAdvisor provides support for unexpected home emergencies with their Home911 app, a great free tool to find local and available service professionals no matter the hour or the holiday."

Kitchen Appliances
According to HomeAdvisor, the most frequent home emergency repair in 2012 has been for appliance repairs.  Avoid having an emergency situation during a big family feast by thoroughly cleaning your oven and grill and keeping kitchen appliances in tip-top shape. If the oven isn't cleaned properly, homeowners risk the chance of filling their house with smoke and ruining their meal.  A professional can inspect top trouble areas and provide insights on repairs or replacements.

Garbage Disposals
Matthews advises that homeowners avoid garbage disposal repairs by never placing coffee grounds, grease, eggshells, bones or potato skins in the disposal. It is also important that homeowners do not overfill their garbage disposal or use chemical drain cleaners to unclog it. It is unlikely that chemical cleaners will work completely and they leave the sink full of toxic liquids.

Chimney and Fireplace
A crackling fire is charming during the holidays, but dirty chimneys can be extremely dangerous and can cause a fire in the home. A professional should inspect the fireplace to ensure the chimney is clean before lighting the first fire of the season.  A money saving tip is to install a glass enclosure or glass doors on the opening of the fireplace to reduce the amount of hot air that escapes from the house.

Keeping a clean filter in the furnace through the winter is essential to maximizing its efficiency. Dirty filters make the furnace work harder and may even damage it. It is also best to hire a professional on an annual basis to install proper filters, vacuum the unit, and recommend appropriate upgrades. Annual maintenance on a furnace can increase its life expectancy by up to four years

Dead and dying tree branches can be a danger to people and power lines. Keep your home safe and prevent power outages this season by hiring a professional to prune branches and limbs close to your home.

For more information on HomeAdvisor and its services, visit www.HomeAdvisor.com.  Home improvement tips and videos are available by visiting www.Facebook.com/HomeAdvisor, by following @HomeAdvisor on Twitter and by subscribing to the YouTube channel at www.YouTube.com/HomeAdvisor.

About HomeAdvisor
HomeAdvisor, formerly ServiceMagic, is a leading website and mobile app provider offering comprehensive solutions, tools and resources for home improvement, repair and maintenance projects.   Harnessing 13 years of expertise helping more than 25 million people find a trusted home service professional, HomeAdvisor features the patented technology of ProFinder, showcasing the nation's largest network of over 80,000 pre-screened, customer-rated and reviewed home improvement professionals.  Homeowners can make informed home project decisions using resources including: Pro Reviews, featuring reviews from homeowners who have actually been connected with the service professionals they review; Cost Guide, providing average costs for projects coast-to-coast; Home911, offering dedicated 24/7 emergency home repair support; as well as robust home tips and project planning tools.  Access to all of the site's features is free for homeowners, with no membership or fees required.  HomeAdvisor is based in Golden, CO, and is a subsidiary of IAC (NASDAQ: IACI).

SOURCE HomeAdvisor

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