One of the first things that homebuyers do when moving into their new house is replace the old appliances. Oftentimes, buying an older home means getting inefficient, outdated appliances that are a few decades old.
But swapping out your appliances isn’t cheap, especially if you do them all at once. A dishwasher, oven, microwave, refrigerator, and washer and dryer can easily reach up to $5,000 or more.
But if you spend all that money on new, expensive appliances, what happens during storm season, when the power goes out for a few minutes, or even a few days, which is far more common in the US than in other developed nations?
Will a power outage cause damage to your appliances? Keep reading below for tips on ensuring your appliances are safe, even when the power goes out.
Tips for Managing a Power Outage
When the power goes out, there are a few dos and don’ts regarding your appliances. First off, don’t open the fridge or freezer. If you keep them sealed, they will maintain their cool temperature for at least a few hours, preventing your food from going bad.
This alone could save you hundreds of dollars. Since most power outages don’t last very long, your food will survive.
If you have a gas stove or oven that still works without power, don’t use that to heat you’re home. Doing so could be dangerous. Make sure you always have a carbon monoxide detector at home to ensure the air is safe, as toxic gas can’t usually be smelled.
To keep your appliances running during a power outage, you can use generated power. Some homeowners install a whole house generator, while others just keep a portable generator on hand as a backup.
Know the benefits of each and choose the best generator you can afford, especially if you live in an area particularly prone to storms and blackouts
Protecting Your Expensive Appliances
When the power goes out initially, it won’t cause any damage to your appliances, they simply won’t be able to work. But when the power comes back on, you could experience some issues.
Power surges happen when the power comes back on, but the initial electricity sent through the system is far stronger than the standard 110 or 220 V. Because your outlets and appliances are only designed to withstand a certain amount of electricity, too much could cause damage.
That’s why appliances should always be plugged into outlets with surge protectors. Surge protectors will block the excess power if and when it comes through the power grid and into your home. These are different from GFCI outlets, which are designed to protect people from shock when electricity is located in a wet or damp area.
For a more thorough approach, you can have a whole house power surge installed, to protect your entire home at once, rather than individual outlets.
If you don’t have power surge protectors right now, then make sure you unplug appliances once the power goes out. After the power comes back online, you can safely plug them back in, knowing any initial power surges have passed.
Nobody enjoys it when the power goes out. Especially those who just bought expensive appliances and want to keep using them.
But blackouts are a normal part of life, especially in certain regions. Always be prepared for them when they happen.
Looking for more tips and tricks like this? Head over to our blog now to keep reading.
- About the Author
Alex Grigoryan is a Professional Home Improvement and Lifestyle Writer. He has been in the industry for over 6 years and has been writing for Chique Home Living since 2019. His work has been featured in prestigious blogs such as Spruce Home, Better Homes & Garden, and more.