WINTER STORMS AND POWER OUTAGES
Prolonged power outages caused by snow, wind or ice can leave you and your family in the dark. Be smart and stay safe. Know what to do and not do when the power goes out.
KEEP THE LIGHTS ON
Keep a few flashlights and fresh batteries stashed in a specific location that is easy to find. Then check your electric panel for a tripped breaker or fuse. If that’s not the problem, alert your utility
company to find out if the outage is local or widespread. Don’t light candles, if at all possible. Open flames are dangerous, especially if you have children or pets. Flashlights are a better alternative.
Also, never use a stove, oven, camping stove, charcoal grill or any gasoline-powered equipment for an indoor heat source. When the power goes out, many people depend on generators to keep their homes warm and the lights on. Remember, never use a generator inside of a house, garage or basement. Place the generator at least 20 feet away from any doors, windows or other openings. It’s always wise to use a battery operated CO detector anytime you use a generator.
Your alarm system will be operational on battery backup for several hours. It’s always a good idea to install a fresh battery before a major storm. Save your old battery as a backup. The folks at Delco Alarm Systems can provide batteries and give you installation instructions if needed. When you are faced with an extended power outage, you may have to find temporary alternative housing. In that event, your backup batteries will allow you to check the security cameras on your smartphone and keep an eye on your property from afar.
Water sensors are also great tools to have in your property security toolbox, as extensive damage can occur when frozen pipes burst. There are several steps you can take to avoid damage caused by frozen pipes:
Know where the water shutoff valve is located. Shut off the water immediately if a pipe bursts.
Let several faucets drip slowly. This will reduce the likelihood of the water freezing. You can collect the water for other uses.
Keep your attached garage door closed and open interior doors and cabinets to keep air flowing.
Pay attention to water pipes close to a window or outside wall, as these are prone to freezing.
Direct warm air toward these pipes, if possible. If you have heat, keep your heater set at a minimum of 55 degrees and keep the temperature consistent.
If your power goes out, the food in your refrigerator will stay cold and safe to eat for about four hours. The USDA has advice on what to toss and what to keep if the power goes out. An emergency kit stocked with bottled drinking water and ready-to-eat food to last your family for a few days is always a good idea. Don’t forget Fluffy and Fido! Keep a few days of pet food and supplies in your emergency kit.
If you have any questions or would like more information, please call Delco Alarm Systems at our office at 610-494-9100.