With summer weather come summer storms—and those storms can be strong here in the Mid-South. From powerful thunderstorms to hurricanes and the occasional tornado, residents in the Memphis metro area and The Tub Pros team serving Germantown, Collierville, Mississippi, and Arkansas, know the best steps to keep themselves and their families safe during severe weather.
But, what is the one thing that’s often missed in information about how to stay safe during storms? What to do about power outages if you do not have a generator—especially when it comes to the kitchen. A power outage can temporarily knock out the important heart of your home, making it much harder to prepare meals and keep your family fed during a storm. And even when power is restored, you might be left with questions—how do I know if my refrigerated food is safe to use? What should I know about keeping food while my power is out—and what’s the safest way to prepare it during a power outage and after it has been in fluctuating temperatures?
We’ll break down what you should know about food storage and safety during and after a power outage, and let you know how “the pros” at The Tub Pros can help make your home beautiful and functional, no matter what the season is.
How long is refrigerator food safe to use during a power outage?
A few simple rules of thumb can help you ensure food safety during a power outage. One of the best things you can do is to keep your fridge and freezer at a safe temperature—about 40 degrees for a fridge and 0 degrees for a freezer, or colder—all of the time, to ensure they have the best chance of keeping food fresh and staying cold during an outage.
If you do lose power during a storm, keep your fridge and freezer doors shut as much as possible. Avoid making extra trips to the fridge by planning ahead for what you need to get out and moving quickly once the door is open. You want to keep the doors (or drawers) closed because the cold air inside your refrigerator is actually coming from the freezer.
Your refrigerator can generally keep food safe and cold for about four hours. After that, it’s time to transfer perishable food to a cooler or ice chest, with ice or ice packs to keep it cold. Keeping some ice packs on hand, or freezing some water if you know a storm is coming, is a good way to make sure you have ice around when you need it. You can add ice to your refrigerator to help keep it cool at about 40 degrees or below.
When it comes to your freezer, the lower temperature gives you more time. A full freezer will keep food frozen for about 48 hours, and a half-full freezer for about 24 hours. Making sure that you keep the door shut will help keep the temperature low for as long as possible.
What’s the safest way to prepare food during a power outage?
One of the most important things to remember during a power outage is to never set up a generator or gas-powered grill indoors. Those appliances can cause carbon monoxide poisoning. But if weather allows, you could take the opportunity to grill up some vegetables or meat from the freezer—ensuring that you only make one trip to the fridge or freezer to grab what you need and keep those doors closed.
But uncooked meals can also help make your food last as long as it can—having cereal to use up with some milk, or cheese and crackers appetizers can also help make sure your family uses what you already have. Canned fruit, beans, meat, granola bars, and canned sandwich ingredients like tuna fish or meat spreads can also help you make sure to have an easy meal ready to go in case you lose power during a storm at any time of the year.
What should I do when power is restored?
When power comes back, throw out food that has gone bad—or that you think has gone bad. Don’t taste it to make sure—it’s better to be safe than sorry. If the temperature of your refrigerated foods has been above 40 degrees for more than two hours, it’s time to toss meat, leftovers, soft cheeses, milk, baby formula, and mayonnaise, among other staples. That doesn’t mean you need to clear your fridge, though—hard cheeses, butter, jelly, ketchup, fruit juice, processed cheeses, and some condiments can still be safe to consume.
Some foods from your freezer can be refrozen, too, if they’ve started to thaw—fruit, rolls, and pie crust are generally safe to refreeze. But meat or fish that have thawed aren’t safe to refreeze—if they’ve been above 40 degrees, it’s time to let them go or cook them up fast.
What can The Tub Pros do for me?
One thing that makes your kitchen easier to use, whether your power is on or off, is a space that looks great, and works at its very best potential for you and your family. A chipped or cracked sink, burned or scratched countertops, or a dated color scheme can make your home look worn and tired, no matter how clean it is—and that can drag down your mood, make you want to avoid the space, and make it harder to work in at any time.
But full kitchen remodel ideas might not be what you need or what you can afford—small changes, like refinishing, can pack a big punch when it comes to refreshing and reinvigorating your space. Whether you’re wondering how to revitalize Corian Countertops, what to do about a cracked porcelain sink, or how to change up an avocado, sea foam, or peach color scheme, we’re here to help. From applying faux granite countertops and refinishing Corian Countertop and sink areas to repairing chipped porcelain and reglazing your stone surfaces, The Tub Pros offer a variety of services to make your space function at its very best. And if you’re wondering where can I find tub refinishing near me, we’re here to help in the bathroom as well, with reglazing and accessibility feature installation to make your space the best it can be for your whole family.
Ready to get started on your kitchen or bath refresh? Would you like a FREE no obligation estimate? Give The Tub Pros a call at (901) 871-8827 or use our online contact to get started today—as a leading Angie’s List provider and member of the Better Business Bureau, we’re here to make your life beautiful! Additional free value added information can be found in our website article library.
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