Summer is upon us and with the hot weather often comes inevitable summer power outages. Five hundred thousand people in the United States lose power every day, and if you don’t’ make preparations for these outages, your wallet, home, and comfort level can suffer dramatically.
With increased temperatures in the summer, people are more likely to crank their air conditioners, overloading the power grid and evitably causing blackouts. Thunderstorms and excessive rainfalls, both common occurrences during the summer months, can also cause power outages. Weather-related outages have doubled in likelihood since 2003, making now as good a time as ever to educate yourself on what to do during a power outage.
We’ve compiled a thorough guide on how to get you through the upcoming summer months when the inevitable blackout occurs. Keep reading to get all the details on what to do in a power outage.
What to Do in a Power Outage 101
The thing about power outages is that, unless you work for the electric company, you can’t control when the electricity comes back on. All you can do in the meantime is focus on staying calm and, if you’re a homeowner, being proactive about the health of your home.
If you’re not sure what to do when the power is out to protect your home, you’re in the right place. Power outages can wreak absolute havoc on unprepared homes.
The first thing you should do is turn any appliances off that you were using when the power shut off. The reason for doing this is because when the electricity comes back on, there could be a damaging power surge that can harm some appliances like your computer. To make this process easier, you can turn off the main breaker to your home.
Generators from websites like https://www.ablesales.com.au can prove to be handy in the event of a power outage. They can help keep your appliances running, your family comfortable temperature-wise and even prevent your home from flooding if your sump pump fails.
If you choose to purchase a generator, it is imperative you have a carbon monoxide detector to go along with it.
How to Stay Cool Without Electricity
When the power goes out in the winter months, it’s easy to throw on extra clothes and snuggle on the couch with your loved ones under infinite blankets. When it goes out in the summer, though, there are only so many layers you can take off to stay cool.
In the event of an outage in the summer months, you’re going to want to find ways to lower your body temperature, especially if you live in a part of the country that gets sweltering hot. There are a few things you can do to stop yourself and your family from overheating until the power comes back on.
Take a Cold Bath
Although the thought of a cold bath might make you shiver to your core right now, bathing in cold tap water can help bring your temperature down if your home becomes unbearably hot. Allow your body and hair to air dry to stay cooler longer.
Keep Everything Closed
Do not open your windows or doors to try and let some air flow into your home. If you must leave your open, make sure you’re exiting at top speed and closing the door quickly behind you.
Block the Sun
Close all of your curtains and blinds to keep the sun from filtering into your home through your windows. If you don’t have window covering, hang up blankets or use aluminum foil on the windows to keep the sun out.
Supplies You’ll Need
Emergency preparedness kits are essential for these kinds of situations, so ensuring you have one stocked up, and ready to go in case of emergency is critical.
Your kit should be kept somewhere safe in your home that will be easily accessible in the event of an emergency. You don’t want to keep it in your attic or crawl space, for example.
You should replace products, especially food items, in your emergency kit every year to prevent spoiling.
Your kit should contain several essential items:
– Non-perishable foods (cereals, granola bars, canned food)
– First aid supplies
– Hand crank radio
– Spare batteries
– Power outage lights
Aside from your kit, you might also find other equipment necessary in the event of an emergency. These might require more of an investment but will prove to be worth it in the long run and even for peace of mind.
A power outage isn’t all bad news. We’ve all become accustomed to modern niceties like our smartphones and Netflix. But if our ancestors can survive without these amenities, we can too (at least for a few hours).
Now that you know what to do when the power is out to protect your home and your family, relax. Light a few candles, bring out some board games, and enjoy some uninterrupted bonding time with your family.
If you have any other tips on what to do in a power outage, be sure to let us know in the comment section.
I’m a single mother of 2 living in Utah writing about startups, business, marketing, entrepreneurship, and health. I also write for Inc, Score, Manta, and Newsblaze