How to Survive a Winter Power Outage
Posted by Kristopher Schwind
We’ve been fortunate enough to have a relatively mild winter so far, but we’re not out of the woods yet. There’s still another month of winter left, and Mother Nature is notorious for being unpredictable. You may remember the nor’easter that took Halloween by storm, no pun intended, back in 2011. Yes, Mother Nature may be poised to shake up her snow globe when you least expect it, so follow our simple tips for surviving a winter power outage and you’ll be ready to tackle whatever she has in store.
Prepare in Advance
It should go without saying that the best way to navigate a winter power outage is to be prepared for it in the first place, so if the forecast is calling for a snowstorm, make sure you have everything you need on hand. You’ll want to have plenty of non-perishable food, water, a plan for cooking (especially if gas service is disrupted), and several light sources at your disposal. Check out our tips for surviving a prolonged power outage for a comprehensive list of everything you’ll need to power through the outage.
If you lose power in the winter, your home can lose heat pretty quickly, so you’ll want to make sure you’re dressed appropriately. You can keep your core temperature warm by wearing layers. Contrary to popular belief, wearing layers is much more effective than, say, throwing on a parka and hoping for the best. That’s because layers will effectively trap heat to keep you warm.
Just be careful not to layer up to the point where you are sweating because then your clothes will begin evaporating the sweat, wicking heat away from you.
Insulate Your Home
In addition to keeping yourself warm, you’ll want to keep your home as warm as possible by insulating it. Something as simple as plastic wrap and tape can work wonders in keeping the heat in and the cold out. Simply tape the plastic wrap to the walls that border your windows, leaving an air gap between the window and the plastic so that you have a pocket of still air. This will keep out any drafts, which can be particularly problematic in a blizzard.
You should also close and seal off any rooms that aren’t in use by placing a towel at the base of the door to keep the heat in the rooms you actually are using.
If the storm is particularly severe, you’ll want to be sure to stay indoors as much as possible. Downed electrical wires and fallen branches outside can create a hazardous danger zone, so it’s in your best interest to stay inside and wait out the storm as much as possible.
However, you should shovel at various points throughout the day, if possible. Just be sure to stick to the task at hand, and avoid venturing too far from your property. Blizzards can cause white-out conditions which can drastically limit your visibility, and snowdrifts may also cover familiar landmarks, making it challenging to find your way back home once you’ve strayed too far.
Power Through It
Generators are the most effective source of power for your home during an outage. If you already have a generator, you should keep it well-maintained throughout the cold winter months so that it can provide you with the necessary power when you need it.
If you don’t have one, but are considering having one installed, get in touch to schedule a free generator consulation. During your consultation, a generator technician will be able to assess your unique power needs and determine the best generator for your property.
Kristopher Schwind is the proud owner of National Standby Repair.