We rely so much on electricity that it’s hard to imagine how people ever managed without it. However, some homeowners occasionally must weather power outages, particularly in the Mid-Ohio winter storms.
It not only is possible to survive without electricity, sometimes it’s a necessity. Here are 10 tips to assist you in preparing for power loss:
- Store water. If there is any chance you may lose your power, fill several containers with water, including your bathtubs. Only use the bathtub water for cleaning or to refill your toilet after flushing during a power outage. Don't drink it.
- Insulate any vulnerable water pipes. If the power outage is during the winter months, be sure water pipes are well insulated to prevent freezing and bursting. Wrap pipes with either insulation or newspapers, and then an outer layer of plastic, to avoid condensation.
- Turn faucets to a slow drip to prevent pipes from bursting. Leaving them open releases any pressure build up that may occur, even if there is ice in the pipes.
- Stock up on batteries, and have several flashlights on hand. A battery-operated or hand-crank radio also is good to have.
- Lower the temperature ahead of time on both the fridge and freezers to preserve food longer. Food will remain chilled for approximately 24 hours in the fridge and 48 hours in the freezer, provided you leave the doors closed, and only open them as necessary.
- Stock your shelves and pantry. Store plenty of canned and non-perishable food, as well as crackers and bottled water. Make sure that you have a manual can opener, and consider investing in a small camp stove, so you can heat small meals and water.
- Insulate your home. You will stay warmer longer in a well-insulated home. Check weatherstripping and caulking on windows and doors, and replace if more sealing is necessary.
- Locate the shut-off valve for your water, so you can turn it off immediately if your pipes burst.
- Keep some cash on hand. ATMs and banks may be out of power, as well.
- Disconnect all electronics. When the power returns, a power surge could occur that may ruin your expensive equipment.
Another great way to stay warm and comfortable during a power loss is through the use of solar energy. At Joe Behr Plumbing and Heating, Inc. we can look after all your solar, heating and cooling needs in the Mid-Ohio area, so give us a call today.