Power outages can happen everywhere and at any time. While some outages do not last too long, sometimes more significant issues are involved, and the outages can last even up to a few days.
Warnings, like forecasts of strong winds, torrential rains, snow, or ice, can let you know about possible power cuts, but you might also find yourself in a situation where there was no warning at all. Even something as trivial as a fallen tree branch and playful birds might damage the power lines.
That is why it is essential that you are always prepared for a sudden power outage. From a simple emergency kit and a reasonable supply of nonperishable foods to prepping for possible cold temperatures – it is always better to be safe than sorry. If you would like to learn more about preparing your house for a power outage, keep reading!
For starters, you should ensure that your home is not susceptible to power failures. To do this, you need to check your home’s electrical system. First, check if your main power lines are sufficiently far away from trees, bushes, and other objects that could cause a short circuit.
Other than that, look at your circuit breakers. Do they all work properly? If you find any issues, it is best to have the circuit breakers replaced as soon as possible. Next, check the service entrance conductors. Are the conductors secure enough? If you find loose connections, frayed insulation, and other significant problems, you should hire an electrician to take care of it for you.
Lastly, you might want to inspect your water heater. If you know that a power outage might be coming, turn the heater off, as an outage might damage the boiler. In addition to that, you might want to check for leaks. It might not seem like it, but a water heater leaking from bottom is a much more common issue than you would think, and you certainly do not want to be left with such an inconvenient issue during a power outage!
Power Outage Kit
In order to be ready for a power outage, you should prepare a power outage kit. In short, it is a waterproof bag filled with things that you are likely to find useful in the event of a power outage. Ideally, you should place it in an easily accessible place, such as your garage, and let every family member know where it is. Your power outage kit should include the following items:
- candles and matches
- flashlights and batteries
- a portable radio
- extra house keys and extra car keys
- copies of important documents
- cash in small denominations
- hand warmers and a whistle
- chargers and charged power banks
- a basic first-aid kit
- hand sanitizer
- baby wipes
- garbage bags
While it is highly unlikely that your municipal water supply will get cut off, it does not mean that it might not happen. If it does, you will be left without running water. That is why you should stockpile drinking water.
Keep in mind that one person needs around one gallon of water a day. If you want everyone to have access to fresh water during a power outage, you will need to consider the number of people and animals in your household. On top of that, you should fill up a few buckets and pots with water for cleaning, cooking, and personal hygiene.
If the area that you live in is expected to experience a power cut, the shelves in your local grocery store are guaranteed to get empty. Because of that, you should keep your pantry stocked with nonperishable foods that do not require refrigeration, such as nut butter, canned tuna, crackers, cereal, canned fruits and vegetables, instant tea, and coffee. It is worth keeping comfort foods like cookies and chocolate on hand, too. If you have pets, remember to always keep some extra food for them as well!
When getting ready for a power outage, it is important to listen to the news. If a storm is coming your way or you know that power lines in your area went down, your local news station will provide you with regular updates on the situation, as well as help you figure out what time the power will come back on. If it seems like your house is not going to be hit by a power outage, but you heard reports of power outages in the region, you should keep an eye on the news just in case.
To sum up, a power outage can be annoying and inconvenient, but it does not have to end up being a huge problem. You just need to prepare for it ahead of time! You can do that by preparing a power outage kit, as well as stockpiling water and food. If it is cold outside, you should consider stocking up on warm clothing and blankets, too!
Needless to say, it is always better to take precautions than risk potential problems in the future. Have you ever experienced a power outage? How did you handle it? Feel free to share your thoughts on the subject in the comment section below!