The good thing in the U.S. is that whenever there is a power outage or interruption, it will most likely be over as it begins. However, it doesn’t mean it happens all the time. There are instances when a power outage will even reach more than a day. In fact, there are instances when it takes about a week before power turns on again.
There are several causes of power outage. The list includes but not limited to high winds, sleet storms, and freezing rains. They all can inflict significant damage to the power lines and other equipment providing power to your home. Likewise, there are unique causes like heat waves and cold snaps. While they don’t do damage physically, they can actually do more harm by overloading the power system.
One of the heaviest burdens in a power outage is you are left without the luxury to use your air conditioning and heating system. There are times when you can’t even get access to running water. Other than that, there are so many inconveniences brought by a power outage, but it doesn’t mean you just lay it all out and be part of the entire breakdown.
When it happens, you need to be prepared for it. The idea is you are responsible in protecting your family and your home while power is off. By doing the right preparation, you will significantly lessen the impact of the power outage.
For one, you need to find out what needs to be done before, during, and finally after a power outage has taken place. Also, it is recommended to make a family emergency plan. This is where you delegate responsibilities to every member of the family. It contains the things they have to do and the places they need to go if there is an emergency situation during power interruption.
An emergency kit will also be very helpful. The kit should have at least the basic things your family needs in order to be self-sufficient for the first 48 or 72 hours of the power outage. Planning ahead is very crucial. Part of that is to know the risks that are specific to your area or city. By knowing the common risks, you have the ability to be more prepared in the process.
In some states where there are frequent power outages, most residents want to be practical by installing and using non-electric heating systems for the winter, as well as standby stove. It is sensible if you do so especially when it is winter. Winter in the U.S. is very harsh and punishing and without sufficient heating units, one can literally die in the cold. There are heating systems that do not depend on electric motor and you have to seriously contemplate on having one.
Now if you happen to have a fireplace that uses traditional wood burning, make sure the chimney is cleaned right before winter comes. This is to guarantee the fireplace will provide the warmth during winter and during a power outage.
Other Important Power Outage Reminders
Don’t forget to determine if the power outage is limited to your home, your neighborhood, or the entire city. If it happens that the neighbor’s lights are on, it means there might be a problem with your fuse box or the entire circuit breaker. If not, it may be the service wires leading to the home. And if the neighbor’s power is also out, what you need to do is call your electrical service provider.
Finally, you need to turn off all appliances, electronic devices, tools, and the heating system thermostat. This is to prevent likely damage caused by a power surge when the power suddenly comes back and is restored. It is also a lot easier for the power company to restore the power if there is no heavy load on the entire electrical system.