I don’t know about you but the prospect of an EMP or electrical grid strike is very scary to me. I am not so much afraid of the loss of electricity but rather the ensuing madness that will come. To be honest, I could handle a life with no power. I wouldn’t have to referee fights over the DS or iPad. I wouldn’t have to manage the amount of television time my kids get. Having no power would make that aspect of life a lot easier. But make no mistake about it. No power is a serious issue and it is something that we all need to be prepared for.
What would you do if you did not have any power? How would you cook your meals? How would you heat your home? While these two questions are some of the most important, they are also some of the least answered. Most people have no idea how to handle the issues of power loss and the effects of this ignorance can be seen in the way people lost their lives this past winter. The winter of 2012/2013 was very cold and it resulted in the loss of many lives. Because of the super cold weather, the power grid was pushed to its max and many large cities, such as Chicago, lost power for extended periods of time.
The reality of our current situation is that we need to all be prepared for the possibility of a winter without power. This is not a slam on the government and it is not a lighthearted attempt to plug the prepping lifestyle. There is no substitute for preparedness and this is the one area where we all need to be united. So what is the best way to be prepared for a winter without power?
Lots of Fire Wood
I understand that this is not something that all people can do. Having a large pile of wood ready to burn is not possible for someone living in New York City. However, there are millions of people that live in a more rural setting that can and should take advantage of this. It is possible to stockpile a large quantity of wood. Many lumber mills have slab wood that they will sell for a very cheap price. Slab wood is typically the leftover product after a tree has been turned into boards for construction.
I have seen slab wood sell for as little as 20 dollars per ton. That is insanely cheap and only adds to the point that you CAN afford to heat with wood. The wood is cheap, it burns hot and it is not hard to cut.
Wood Stoves Are Great
We have a wood stove in the garage and use it pretty often when the weather turns cold. The wood stove is a great tool for preppers and for living without electricity. The stove will get very hot and it will put off some amazingly warm heat. Keep in mind that you can also use wood stoves to cook. When you use a dutch oven you can bake inside the stove and even use the surface to bring items to a boil. It is very similar to a crock-pot.
Stock Up on Lanterns
If the power fails then you are going to be without light. So why not take the time to learn how to use lanterns? An oil lantern is a great tool that can offer a great amount of light as well as some residual heat. All you need to do is keep the fuel level right and the wicks trimmed back. This is a much better alternative than candles and flashlights. However be sure that you are careful around the lantern and that you have a fire extinguisher just in case.
When the temperature falls below 32 degrees, water freezes. If you live anywhere up north you know that frozen pipes are a serious issue and they can lead to even bigger problems. So what should you do in the event that your pipes freeze and you no longer have any water? This is why you need to stock up on bottled water. You could even buy a few 5-gallon water tanks and store them in a closet. Whatever you do be sure that you have some kind of back up water supply.
There are several other aspects to being prepared for a winter without electricity. It is always a good idea to have plenty of batteries and flashlights. You need to take the time to have blankets and warm clothes ready. Having canned food is also a must. Another aspect that many will overlook is having items such as laundry detergent. A few weeks without power and your clothes are going to smell very interesting.
Take the time to look around and make the proper adjustments for cooler weather. Your life and the well being of your family is at stake.