So Your Power Is Out, Now What Do You Do?
The Power is now out. For how long? No one really knows yet. Maybe a few hours, a day, a week or God help us even longer. Knowing what to do and having a plan as well as the correct products and tools will help you streamline this experience. A few summers ago in Southern California we lost power for almost four days. Luckily we had proactively prepared and when the power died, we were ready. We didn’t need to leave our home and travel to an expensive hotel and pay a fortune for food. We actually embraced the challenge and put our plan to work. Below are some of the things we implemented and used for that 4 day period of time. When the power came back on we didn’t get cocky but we felt we had really accomplished a lot and realized our plan worked as well as we could have hoped. Get prepared today and don’t procrastinate because you never know what tomorrow has in store.
1. Have flashlights ready in numerous and, easily accessible locations around your home. Be sure to also have plenty of fresh, spare batteries. You need one really great flashlight but it is also nice to have a bunch of small, handheld LED handheld flashlights. Also, you can watch the video and read more about this on the bottom of the page but having a few of the Survival Lightbulbs around strategic areas of your home can make all the difference. When the power goes out you just flip the switch and these lights still come on! See the bottom for more details.
2. Have emergency candles plus matches available as well a candle lantern, oil lamp, or propane lantern. Be sure to include some longer, fireplace type matches or a butane wand for lighting fires in your fireplace or outdoors in a fire pit.
3. Have either a battery-operated radio, solar radio or hand crank radio so that you can stay in touch with the world. Make sure your radio is in working condition by testing it at least once a year.
4. Practice makes perfect, learn how to cook over an open fire, using charcoal or wood. Make sure you have matches, a lighter, or a fire striker to get a fire started.
5 Make sure you have a manual can opener for opening cans of food. If you are a coffee drinker, also have a French press available as well as pre-ground coffee,
6. Fill the empty space in your freezer with containers of water. Frozen water will displace air and keep food cold longer if the power goes out. Remember to leave space in containers for ice to expand. Empty milk cartons can be repurposed in this manner.
7. If you use a landline, have at least one phone with a handset cord in your home. Many cordless phones will not work in a power outage. Cell phone users should keep their cell phones charged and at the very least, pick up a cell phone car charger so you can charge the cell in your car if it runs down. There are also multiple small portable solar solutions now available to help keep personal electronics charged.
8. If you have an automatic garage door opener, learn how to use the manual release to open your garage door manually. Keep the instructions handy – perhaps taped to the inside of a closet door – so you don’t have to search for them when the time comes.
9.Always keep your automobile’s fuel tank at least half full. Most gas stations will not be in operation during a power outage. And make are to fill up your tank if a major storm is predicted.
10. Once the power goes out, unplug sensitive electrical equipment such as computers, printers, televisions, and audio equipment. When the power comes back on, there may be power surges that can damage delicate electronics. Keeping these items plugged in to surge protector helps but it is still best to unplug these items from the wall completely.
11. Do not open refrigerators or freezers any more than necessary. An unopened refrigerator will keep food cold for approximately 4 hours, an unopened freezer will keep food frozen for approximately 24 hours and even longer if it is located in a cold garage. You should throw away any food items that become warmer than 41 degrees for an extended period of time. You don’t want to take any risk of getting food poisoning.
12. Keep a supply of books, board games, playing cards and other items available to keep you entertained and amused during a power outage. A bit of chocolate and a bottle or two of wine or whiskey would also help in the amusement area. Playing games and keeping spirits high is important. You have heard us say it before but Attitude is everything, and you and those you love need to stay as positive and upbeat as possible.
13. Be wary of the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning, which is caused from exposure to odorless fumes created by charcoal grills, camping stoves or generators that are operated inside a home or garage. Don’t burn charcoal or use gasoline or propane-powered equipment inside your home. Don’t even do it in your garage or on your porch. Use such equipment only when you’re completely outdoors.
14. Notify your power company in advance if you use special healthcare equipment like oxygen generators or dialysis equipment that require power. Most power companies have the ability to note this in their records and will prioritize the response to your home.
15. If your budget allows, acquire a portable generator. Learn to safely use your generator and test it on a regular basis. Make sure to store enough fuel to run the generator for up to a week. Remember, your portable generator does not have to run full time. Your refrigerator will be just fine without power over night when it is not being opened and closed repeatedly.
Most of us have been through situations with no power for periods of time. Being proactively prepared before something bad happens makes all the difference in emergency situations. Take this time now, when things are normal to plan ahead and prepare. Power outages that last more than 72 hours can become deadly. Those that are prepared and have the supplies and a plan in place not only survive but thrive compared to others in the same situation.
The Survival Lightbulb you see on sale below was built for power outages. Their motto is, “When the Power Goes Out, This Light Stays On.” Being able to have normal light that isn’t mono focused like a flashlight let’s you operate in a normal lighting situation. The Survival Lightbulb lights up the room the same as if your power was still on. Click on the banner below to watch a 30 second video explaining how this Lightbulb could literally light up your life when you need it the most.