No one wants to be without power, especially during cold and inclement weather. But unfortunately, no one can control the events that may lead to a power outage in their home. That’s why preparing for the worst-case scenario is essential to ensure you and your home remain safe.
Get Ready Before Bad Weather Arrives
Even though power outages don’t happen often, natural and manmade issues may leave you without light, heat, hot water, and other comforts for any amount of time. Anticipate what you might need to stay safe and comfortable.
- Seal and winterize your home. This includes spaces around doors, windows, and your rafters or attic. You can use plastic, foam, insulation, and other products to keep your space as warm as possible.
- Ensure you have flashlights or lanterns and a radio in an easy-to-access location. Keep extra batteries with them in case you have a prolonged time without power.
- Buy or assemble your own first aid kit.
- Always keep shelf-stable food in your kitchen or stored away in case it’s needed. Don’t forget to make your pet’s food part of this planning as well.
- If your house has a fireplace or wood stove, ensure it’s inspected and cleaned before inclement weather arrives.
- If your home relies on well water, keep jugs or bottles of water in storage.
- Invest in a portable power station to keep your devices up and running for as long as possible.
- Get a portable generator if you can. You’ll need a ventilated location away from your home to operate it safely.
- Some people have medical devices that require electricity. Get in touch with your power provider and see if they have a registry for emergency medical needs or portable power sources available during powerless times.
How To Stay Warm During a Winter Power Outage
For those who live in regions where winter is frigid, it can be dangerous if a home gets too cold. So here are some precautionary steps to keep warm, safe, and comfortable when you find yourself without power:
- Your first step is to see if there’s an area-wide power outage. If not, your circuit breakers or fuses may be the problem.
- Only use an indoor fireplace or wood stove for heat. Never use any gas heaters, camping stoves, or other outdoor heating devices inside. Lack of ventilation can lead to poisoning and even death.
- Keep any frozen and refrigerated foods cold. Avoid opening the doors of your freezer or refrigerator. You can add snow or ice from outside to keep the contents cold.
- Dress in as many layers as possible and sit under blankets. Dark blankets can draw in heat from the sun when hung over the window or on the floor where sun rays hit.
- Unplug your electronics and appliances. You don’t want to deal with a surge when the power comes back on. For those who have electric heat, open your taps to a drip. This will often keep your pipes from freezing over and bursting.
- Stay home. If the weather s bad enough to have caused the power to go out, chances are that the roads are blocked and unsafe.
- Don’t use your cell phone to make calls. Texting doesn’t require as much power from the battery, and you’ll want to have the option to call for emergency help if needed.
Winter Power Outage Tips for When the Power Comes Back On
You should call a professional to evaluate the damage if you have residual problems after power is restored. Always make sure you avoid wet or flooded areas until you’re sure that there’s no flow of electricity to that space.
It’s okay to take your time getting your home back to its normal level of operation to stay safe. The one thing you don’t want to move slowly on is preparing for another outage. Replace and restock any preparations where necessary.
Anticipate and Prepare
Now you know what to do if your power goes out during winter, and it’s time to take action. You and your loved one’s safety and well-being depend on it.
Categorised in: Home Electrical
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