Is Your Home Ready for a Prolonged Power Outage?
Natural disasters have been a mainstay in the news this summer. Just as the California wildfire season wrapped up (which brought the largest complex fire in California state history), Hurricane Florence made headlines as it brought devastating floods to the Carolinas. These forces of nature left thousands of homes without their electricity — and though power utility companies do their best to get the lines up and running as soon as they can, there is never any guarantee that an outage will be short lived.
So, what can you do as a Sierra Foothills or Sacramento area homeowner to prepare your home for an unexpected power outage?
Preparing Your Home for Wildfires
The greatest threat to the power supply of most California homes are the numerous wildfires that plague our foothills and neighborhoods each year. When the summer heat hits California, and the vegetation dries out, how can you best safeguard your home from being engulfed in a wildfire?
Diligently clearing your property of dried out brush and dead leaves is a good start. This ensures that even the smallest spark carried in a strong wind does not start a fire on your land. Another helpful step is to ensure you are compliant with the San Diego regulations regarding your home’s defensible space. This means keeping a 50 foot clearance of any flammable plants from your home.
Preparing Your Home for a Power Outage
If the power does go out, it becomes only a matter of time before the food in your freezer goes bad and you find yourself in need of a hot shower. That’s not to mention the dangers of being out of reach from any emergency services. This is why backup generators have become the go-to when safeguarding against the inconvenience and danger of power outages. But since generators run on fuel, they will only last as long as there is a supply of that fuel. So, conserving your home’s energy consumption is the key to getting the most out of your generator in an emergency.
When you make energy saving upgrades to your home, you aren’t just saving energy in an emergency; you’re saving it year round! Home energy conservation also means lower monthly energy bills. Try these energy saving upgrades:
Update Your Windows
The windows and doors in your home can account for up to 30% of the energy loss in your home. Upgrading to high quality double paned windows will keep your conditioned air inside your home, thus putting less strain on your heating and cooling systems. This also makes your home less susceptible to temperature changes from high winds.
Solar + Battery Storage
Going solar in and of itself will greatly reduce your energy costs year round. But when you combine a solar array with a battery storage system, you can say goodbye to the unpredictability of the power grid. A solar photovoltaic system will convert the sun’s rays into electricity, and the excess power that is generated is stored for later use when the sun isn’t shining. In a power outage, your home can operate as a well electrified island — safe from an unpredictable outage!
CES Bonus Emergency Tip:
Though this may not help with energy efficiency, installing a sump pump in your crawlspace or basement will protect your home in the event of a flood by pumping excess water that has infiltrated your home. This buys you and your family time during a heavy storm! While we know it doesn’t rain often in our parts but when it does, it rains hard and flash flooding is always a concern.
Stay Prepared with California Energy Services in El Dorado Hills
You can’t predict when an emergency will strike. But when you do what you can to be prepared for it, it can mean energy savings all year round!
The home efficiency specialists at California Energy Services have the experience and training to get your home in shape to conserve the maximum amount of energy possible. So if you are looking to keep the lights on during a Walnut Creek emergency, go with the experts at CES Home Upgrades!