How to Prepare Your Home for a Power Outage or Blackout

Power outages can be extremely inconvenient and very uncomfortable if you are not ready. It is essential that you have prepared your home for a power outage or blackout of any kind in order to have a smooth and calm experience. Here are some tips to help you to prepare your home for a power outage or a blackout.

First it is necessary that you know your power company. You should have their phone number and contact information on hand and ready in case of an emergency. This way you can contact them to inquire about how long the outage will last or for other pertinent information in an emergency situation.

Another way to prepare your home and your family for a power outage is to have emergency kits packed for each family member. These kits should include the essentials for each person in your house to last up to 3 days. In this pack you should include first aid items, changes of clothes, toiletries such as deodorant and wet wipes and any other necessary items. In addition you should have plenty of bottled water on hand. Typically each person in your home will need a minimum of 1 gallon of water, however more water is even better. This water may be needed not only for drinking, but also for bathing. In addition make sure you have non-perishable food on hand since all of the food in your refrigerator will likely go bad quickly should the power go out. Canned foods are ideal since they store well, have a long shelf life, and usually don’t require any cooking.

Next, it is always a smart idea to have flashlights ready to go in your home. They should be located in a spot that is easy to access so that you don’t have to fumble around in the dark searching for them. One flashlight often isn’t enough. Have a few on hand including larger lantern flashlights that can brighten up a larger space. Being able to see during a power outage or blackout can help prevent accidents, keeping you and your family safe even in the dark. Also, be sure to have lots of extra batteries ready incase your flashlight dies. Another idea is to use glow sticks. These last for a decent amount of time and make great lighting for floors and corners. Lay these along pathways and halls in your house for a lighted route that can help avoid trips and falls.

As soon as you see the lights flicker or have been warned that a power outage or blackout is coming your way, you need to turn of the HVAC in your home. When the power cycles through it can seriously harm your HVAC’s compressors. Also, it is wise to turn this off to reduce the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning from a gas furnace. You can also turn off your refrigerator’s power as an extra safety precaution. These can all be turned back on once power is restored or you are given the okay.

Power outage preparation is the key to enduring any power outage or blackout. You never know when an outage may occur, so you need to have a plan in place ahead of time. If you have all the essentials ready and have taken precautions to ensure your home is safe, you will be able to wait out the outage comfortably and with piece of mind.

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