This is one of the most beautiful sights I’ve ever seen – the light on on this power strip! It means we have public power again! HOOOOOORAAAAAAAAAAY!!
Our power went off about 3 a.m. Thursday morning and came on about noon today. AHHHH!
We have tried to prepare for bad things, like severe weather, ever since we got married over 44 years ago. In 2000 or 2001 we had a horrendous ice storm. We lost public power and public water for 14 days. We made it through with a diesel generator and our well, but it was not fun.
Since then, we’ve purchased a much bigger, nice, more reliable generator that runs everything in the house except for heat and air conditioning. We changed it to propane, and then spent a fortune having the electric company put in a special elaborate switch so that the generator turns on and off automatically when it senses the public power is on or off. (We have two of these – one per floor)
Additionally, when we built the house over 25 years ago, we had the electricians install a special outlet that was not attached to the grid inside. I can’t tell you all the technical details of this, but we always have this power strip showing outside our entertainment center so that we can tell when the public power comes back on. This afternoon the light on the power strip suddenly turned on. The transfer from the generator that has been running for two days straight and the return to public power was so smooth we didn’t even realize it at first.
Now that the public power is back on, we have heat all over the house, rather than just from the blower on the fireplace insert! And I can do laundry and run the dishwasher! I can DO these things when the generator is on, but VERY carefully. Our appliances really don’t LIKE the generator power. The voltage is just slightly different, but the appliances let us know things aren’t perfect. We also just run one powerful thing at a time, monitoring carefully for any sign of problem.
We have UPS’s (uninterruptible power supplies) set up for computers, hot water on demand units, driveway alarms, etc. These are set up in case of short power surges or glitches so that the systems continue running. They aren’t meant to last for over 15 minutes, and some of the UPS’s shriek because they don’t like generators at all. We’ve learned each year what we have that needs special handling or to be switched in order to work. We’ve just switched everything back to ‘normal’ now. (We have several of these – different styles, brands, hooked up to important things)
We still can’t get down the driveway, and probably will need about a week for two old geezers to use a chain saw and drag all the tree parts and bushes to one side or the other, allowing us to get down our driveway again. Right now it wouldn’t matter if we had snow and ice or not – there is NO WAY to get down or up our driveway until we can cut and move all the stuff blocking it.
BUT – we were lucky we had a generator. We had the necessities, and even some really nice amenities while weathering the worst of the storm.
Now we need a team of tree and bush cutters to magically appear and take away all this STUFF in our driveway!
YES! This is just PART of our driveway!