Be ready in case bad weather causes outages.
Have batteries handy for flashlights and a radio.
Stay away from downed lines or tree limbs on power lines.
Turn off all lights but one. Unplug appliances and lower the thermostat. When the power comes back on, wait 10 min before turning on heat to reduce load on system.
See if your neighbors are without power. If not, the problem may be in your service panel.
Wear warm clothing.
Pull drapes to save heat.
Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed.
Remember, call us first 509-884-7191 or report through your SmartHub App. We want to get your power turned on quickly and safely.
Prepare your home
Here’s a list of things you should do to prepare your home for comfort and power savings:
- Foundation vents. Use a piece of rigid foam insulation or fiberglass insulation to plug vents. Keeping the crawl space warmer will protect pipes from the cold and slow energy loss.
- Furnace and heat pump filters. Replace or clean clogged filters to help increase the unit’s efficiency and life expectancy.
- Furnace duct work. Use caulking or duct tape to seal duct work around seams and joints where warm air may be escaping. Close the crawlspace providing access to the duct work so dogs or cats don’t disturb duct insulation or disconnect duct work.
- Windows, electrical outlets, baseboard moldings. To keep cold air from entering, seal cracks around stationary surfaces with caulking; use weather-stripping around sliding windows, opening doors, etc.
Before purchasing or installing a portable generator for use during a power outage, consider these important safety issues:
- BACKFEED–Plugging a portable generator into an electrical outlet in your house could cause backfeed. This occurs when electricity from the generator flows through the home’s wiring, out through the electric meter, and passes through the utility’s transformer, energizing the utility service lines. Backfeed can injure or kill a utility worker who is repairing a power line!
- TRANSFER SWITCH–When operating a portable generator, any effort to use home electrical appliances that are hard-wired to the wiring in a house requires the use of a transfer switch. The transfer switch will mechanically disconnect the household’s circuit from the utility’s power supply system. A transfer switch MUST be used to avoid backfeed into the utility’s power system and is required by electric code.
- INSTALLATION–Electric code requires that a licensed electrician install stationary generators that are permanently wired to the household’s electrical system. The owner of the generator must acquire an electrical permit, and the unit must be inspected.
Holiday Safety Tips
Home means “safety” for the Holidays. Preparing for the Holiday season is joyful and exciting. Above all, think Safety this Holiday Season. Here are some tips on holiday electric safety:
- Inspect tree lights for cracked or loose sockets, exposed wires and frayed, broken or scorched insulation.
- Never use indoor lights outdoors.
- If you use an artificial Christmas tree, be sure that it is certified fire-resistant.
- Don’t overload home circuits with too many plugs or lights and keep extra fuses on hand.
- Unplug all decorative lights before going to bed.
- Be aware of overhead lines.
- If you are making plans to trim the outside of your residence in lights this year, be sure to identify any overhead lines close to you.
- Do not use any metal ladders or structures anywhere near these power lines. Instead, choose alternate ‘trim’ areas to hang your lights or decorations.