The winter season is just around the corner. And, over the recent years, winter storms can get record-breaking outcomes from power outages to heavy snowfall that can cause quite a disruption in our day-to-day living.
Harsh weather conditions can also make the process of restoring things back to normal take longer than usual. So, what do you do in times like these when you don’t know when things will go back to business as usual?
You prepared the best that you could. Have everything you need to pass the storm comfortably.
But where to begin?
How do you even start your winter power outage survival kit?
Start with checking what you have and what you’re going to need. Have an inventory of what you already have at home or in your car. This will help you see how adequate or inadequate your supplies are during emergencies.
And, this will be your starting point when building the foundation of your emergency kit. As a rule of thumb, make sure to have at least a 72-hour kit with you, which is at least 3 days' worth of supply, especially when the power grids are down.
Have enough water and food. This is an essential part of any survival kit. Your stock should have at least 3 days' worth of food that’s going to last you and your family. Get non-perishable food, and make sure that you regularly check their expiration date.
Remove those that expired and replenish any food items that have been consumed. Besides food, make sure to have enough water supply with you. Having a stockpile of water bottles is good but consider filling up jugs, sinks, or bathtubs especially during winter storms, just in case the municipal water becomes unavailable.
Lights. An important aspect of power outages is darkness, especially at night time. So, make sure that your flashlights are always in working order. Give everyone at home their flashlight. You may also want to stock up on lights that you can easily recharge whether it be via batteries or solar.
Having candles is a good alternative. But, they are quite the fire hazard. Remember to be careful when using them. Consider buying those tap lights and motion sensor lights around the house.
- Stock up on batteries. You’ve got flashlights but you forgot to check the batteries so now it’s not working. So make sure to have a stash of all battery sizes from AA to AAA.
- Gas up and inspect your vehicles. It is important to check that your car is in working order. That way you know you have a vehicle that you can rely on when you need to move out quickly during an emergency. And, that includes making sure that the tank is always full.
Invest in generators. Batteries can only do so much. In the end, they’ll run out of power after hours of usage. Consider investing in generators. Your wallet may take a hit but the long-term benefits and comfort are worth it. There are different types of generators out in the market. The most common ones are gas generators and solar generators.
Unlike gas generators, solar generators are a healthier option as they don’t emit any toxic gasses. They can be safely used indoors.
They are also healthier for the planet as they use a renewable source of energy by utilizing the power of the sun. They come in varying sizes to suit anyone’s energy needs. They can be portable or can be a great battery backup at home. An example of these are Nature’s Generator 1800 watts and the Powerhouse 120V/240V 7200 watts.
And, the solar panels that accompany these generators can still work even if it's snowing. They may not be able to collect the same amount of light as it normally would during summer time but it would still work to provide its users electricity. To choose the right home battery backup for you, you may contact us here for more information.
- Check your medicine and first aid kit. Having a survival kit meant having enough supplies that would last you for days. And like the rest of the things on this list, you should have enough medicine supply, especially if there’s any medication that you or anyone in the family needs to drink daily. The first aid kit should always be replenished after every usage.
- List emergency phone numbers and create a family communication plan. Make sure that you jot down important contact information that you could call during an emergency. Create a plan on how you’ll reach your friends and family in various scenarios.
- Pet Emergency Kit. If you’re a fur parent, ensure that you’ve prepared their emergency kit. This includes the same essentials: food, water, medicine (if any), and emergency toys.
- Extra Cash. It is important to have extra cash on hand, especially during power outages. This way you won’t have any difficulty making any transaction. One less thing to think about when buying essentials as POS stations can’t work without electricity.
Document everything. As homeowners, you should know your home inside and out. While you have your local experts to rely on when repairing things, it doesn’t hurt to know simple things such as turning off water and gas valves to avoid frozen pipes from exploding.
Take notes of things and save them so you can easily refer to them when the need arises.
Being prepared is cool…
By having all of these on hand, you don’t have to do last-minute shopping. You don’t have to worry if you’ll be able to get the things you need with other people also going after the things you need.
After all, it is better to be well-equipped than ill-equipped in situations that you can’t control. By being prepared for anything that may happen (and not just the winter season), you have a sense of control. And, don’t be disappointed if you end up not using them after a storm or for a long time. That’s good news.
You can still use them some other time. And, it means nothing has happened that raises the need for you to use any of them.
Remember it is better to be prepared than to be taken by surprise. In many disaster situations, the main culprit is always because some fail to prepare. And, that lack of foresight can lead to dangerous situations, putting one’s life at risk, or worse —- death.
* We want to give credit where credit is due. Professional writer, Cris Ilao, contributed research and content to this blog titled: Winter Power Outage Survival Kit Thank you, Cris, for your contributions!