Spring is here, which means that thunderstorm season will soon be upon us in Minnesota. If the power goes out, it can not only be dangerous, but it can also be expensive. Power outages can cause damage and loss throughout a home, and can create risks for those who live in it.
Thankfully, there are a few easy, common-sense things you can do before and during a blackout to keep your home and family safe.
Our number one suggestion is to rent a portable generator! It’s the simplest and least expensive backup power system. The downside is you have to run extension cords to get power, and you’re limited to how many things you can plug in at once (most generators have either two or four outlets). You also have to start and maintain the generator. However, it’s a good way to keep essentials – such as the refrigerator or air conditioner – running during an outage.
When the power goes out, place the generator on a flat surface outside, at least 10 feet from the house. Don’t set it under awnings, canopies or carports, or inside the house or garage. It’s absolutely critical that you keep the generator away from your house and especially away from doors and windows—your life could depend on it! More people die from carbon monoxide poisoning from gas engines on generators than from the disasters causing the power outages.
Read on for a few more tips, courtesy of Family Handyman.
When power goes out, and utility companies work to restore it, the grid becomes less stable. This can cause power surges and damage to electronics. Unplugging as much as possible will avoid this.
Be Aware of Carbon Monoxide
Carbon monoxide poisoning is more common during power outages, so it’s important to always make sure your carbon monoxide detector has working batteries.
Keep the Fridge and Freezer Doors Shut
After power goes out, food will stay good in refrigerators for up to six hours, and in freezer for one to three days – if the doors aren’t opened. Tape a sign on the door to remind everyone in the house to keep the doors shut.
Fill Up the Bathtub
A power outage could cause municipal water to stop. Following a blackout, fill up bathtubs, sinks and buckets to have water for drinking and washing.
When the lights are out, it’s easier to get injured – either by falling, running into something, or trying to minimize damage in and outside of your home. Further, when the emergency response system is taxed, it may take more time to get emergency assistance. Use a flashlight, move about your house carefully, and don’t take any chances.
Broadway Rental has the equipment you need to get your house storm-ready and clean up after severe weather. Check out our full Minneapolis equipment rental catalog to find the right tools, and get in touch to get started today.