How to prepare for power outages

Posted by Shawn Tipping on

So what do you do if you lose power?

72 hours without power could literally kill you, if you think about it.

Say it’s the middle of Winter and it’s a crisp -15 degrees Fahrenheit outside and all of a sudden the power goes out.

72 hours without heat in those conditions? Yeah, you’d be in trouble.

This is where good knowledge of alternative fuel sources will really come in handy. After all, what exactly is your plan for when the power goes out?

And freezing to death isn’t exactly your only problem here, how do you plan on heating up food? Melting snow so it turns to water (for those of you who took the water stock pile challenge, you don’t need to worry about this)?

This is why at Game Plan we have spent the last few years researching and testing all the different ways to deal with a power outage. For reference, I went ten days without power once, and it sucked, to be specific.

First, let’s talk about the different fuel sources.

The absolute best way to prepare for a power outage is to have alternative power sources available. I agree that you can find different ways to heat yourself besides an outside heat source, but nothing quite compares to its effectiveness (and comfort).

Butane Canister and Canned Heat Cells: these are mainly used for cooking and are popular with those going on a camping trip. In an emergency situation, they could prove pretty handy.

Propane and Natural Gas: anyone who’s run a gas grill can see where this is going. Propane is a fantastic source for heating food and running generators.

Gasoline: not as clean burning as Propane, but it does the job the same (I mean are you really going to be caring about how clean your flames are burning in the situation talked about above?).

Wood and Charcoal: it almost reminds me of the 1800’s, not because that’s what they used back then (it is) but because it’s extremely old fashioned and pretty inefficient.

Solar: do I have to say it? It comes from the sun. You will need special equipment like the Hybridlight solar charged flashlight to take advantage of this, but it is one of the most efficient power sources available.

Wind power: similar to Solar (in terms of how you use it) because it needs special equipment. Not to mention, you will need to be in a fairly high wind producing area to take advantage of this.

Given these 6 alternative power sources (alternative to electricity, that is) I highly suggest you…

Pick one and use it to prepare for a potential power outage.

In disaster preparedness we like to say “Two is One and One is None.” Which is just a really fancy way of saying “what can go wrong, probably will.”

I mean I have access to electricity, natural gas and regular gas as fuel sources. How many is that? If you said 3, I’m mad.

No! It’s only 2. I have access to 2 power sources, and when one goes out I have access to one power source.

And when I have access to only one? Yup, you guessed it!

For instance, I have a 8650 watt gas generator at my house. If the electricity goes out, it’s going to do wonders to keep my house up and running.

But then the gas goes out, and I’m left with just one fuel source: Natural Gas.

As you can see, it’s pretty easy to weed through your options pretty quick. Having a backup like a generator is just not a long-term fix.

So, which one are you going to prepare with? Leave a comment below and let us know.

​Did you know that you are twice as likely to follow through with something when you have someone holding you accountable?​

Consider us your coaches in disaster preparedness.


-Shawn Tipping


P.S. Next week, we will be posting about what to do after the power goes out and what you can do to prepare for it now. Go and take our disaster preparedness quiz now if you haven’t already.

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