Buy a generator, to keep the freezer running. If that’s not practical or out of your budget, try some of these tips:
Turn it down. If you think you might lose power, turn your freezer down to its coldest setting ahead of time to make sure it is as cold as possible.
Fill ‘er up. A full freezer stays cold longer than a halfway empty one. Don’t forget to leave a little room for ventilation.
Fill bottles or milk jugs with water and freeze. You’ll have several blocks of ice to keep things cold, and you’ll have ice water on hand for a power (and AC) outage.
Throw a bunch of Capri-Suns or similar in the freezer. They’ll tuck around your food into small cracks and spaces and act like ice packs. Plus, you can drink them!
Dry ice will keep your food frozen in a power outage, and can also keep items in your fridge cool. Follow the guidelines at the store and DO NOT touch it directly! Dry ice in a fully stocked, insulated freezer can keep things from starting to thaw for up to four days. A large freezer can take up to 50 pounds of dry ice to keep foods frozen, which might not be easy to get during an emergency.
Place a penny or small object on top of an ice cube tray to judge whether the contents have thawed and refrozen after the power is restored. If the ice turns into water, the penny will sink and refreeze inside the ice cube. You’ll know whether your frozen foods are still safe to eat.
Keep the freezer door closed, and tape it shut. Habits are hard to break and the tape will keep family members from opening the door unnecessarily.
Wrap your freezer in a blanket or moving pads for extra insulation, and move it to a shady spot if it’s outside.
And finally, if an outage lasts for days, plan ahead and have plenty of charcoal or propane on hand to barbecue all that meat before it goes bad.
What are you doing to prepare this week?