You can’t predict a power outage, but you can prepare for it. By creating a well-stocked emergency kit well before any hint of an outage, you can minimize your family’s discomfort, even if you don’t have a generator — and help to ensure that everyone stays safe until the power is restored.
Setting aside several flashlights and a supply of batteries is a good start. But some homeowners fail to anticipate other important components of a power-outage emergency kit. Here are nine mistakes to avoid when you’re preparing for a power outage:
- Going hungry — and thirsty: Some power outages stretch for days. Be ready to protect your food from spoiling and to provide enough water for your family’s basic needs. Your kit should include at least one big foam cooler for food and a gallon of water per person per day. Prepare for the worst by putting aside a two-week supply of water.
- The accidental raw-food diet: Your electric stove won’t work during a power outage. Pick up a propane-fueled camp stove and add it to your kit along with a good supply of propane. Depending on the stove, you might need to use it outdoors.
- Getting stuck at your house: Keep your gas tank on the full side.
- Getting stuck in the dark: Include several dozen candles in your kit along with candle holders and matches.
- Freezing: Invest in a battery-powered space heater, and make sure you have enough batteries to keep it running.
- Losing phone coverage: Dig a phone with a cord out of your attic — it’ll probably work during a power outage.
- Losing touch: Record your utility’s phone number; it can keep you updated on the outage. Add a crank-operated radio to your kit for updates from the local media.
- Being unprepared for health problems: Put together a comprehensive first-aid kit as well as a seven-day supply of your family’s prescription medicines.
- Going stir crazy: Include some entertainment in your kit, such as board games and puzzles — especially if you have children.
At Overland Park Heating & Cooling, we’re committed to our customers’ comfort and safety. Contact us today.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about power outages and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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