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Electrical Shutdown.....what to do?
Old 01-10-2018, 08:26 PM   #1
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Electrical Shutdown.....what to do?

The city utility has notified us that there will be an 8 hr power outage next wk while they replace a power pole. They suggest disconnecting electronic equipment including computers. Is there a particular order that computers, modem and router should be turned off and then back on? Any other things that should be disconnected?
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Old 01-10-2018, 08:32 PM   #2
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No particular order shutting down but I would shut OFF the computer first. Same for turning back on (no order) but I would reverse the situation and turn the computer ON last. Main point is to unplug as much as you can and surge protect anything else. Plus, I would leave sensitive things unplugged for awhile. Plug everything back in right away and who's to say they don't have a problem that causes a surge. I'd give it a half hour or so after they're done - for sensitive items.
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Old 01-10-2018, 08:55 PM   #3
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One thing that got me a few years ago when the power went off for hours was the ice melting in the icemaker, which was in the door of the side-by-side refrigerator/freezer. Water went all over the place.

You asked about your computer, but just sayin'.
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Old 01-10-2018, 09:25 PM   #4
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If you put some 2 liter bottles of water in the freezer now, allow room for ice expansion, you will have a nice ice chest during the power outage if you don't open the freezer door and everything inside should stay nicely frozen.
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Old 01-10-2018, 09:59 PM   #5
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I would shut down computer before hand like some have said. The best is not to open freezers/fridges while power is out only as little as possible. An eight hour outage is a long outage so you don't want to be in and out of those appliances keep them shut.
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Old 01-10-2018, 10:29 PM   #6
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If you put some 2 liter bottles of water in the freezer now, allow room for ice expansion, you will have a nice ice chest during the power outage if you don't open the freezer door and everything inside should stay nicely frozen.

I was going to suggest this... 8 hours is a long time for a freezer unless it is a chest... we had 4 or 5 bottles....
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Old 01-11-2018, 04:47 AM   #7
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Hard to say if we don’t know what city or State
For example in Minnesota you could probably jut put freezer stuff outside in a cooler...
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Old 01-11-2018, 05:56 AM   #8
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Here I'd move whatever could be frozen to our large chest freezer.

And buy dry ice from the local grocery store to add to the fridge/chest freezer.

I'd also flip off the main breaker rather than unplug individual appliances.
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:38 AM   #9
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main breaker would be my suggestion also, it eliminates the possibility of power surges.
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:49 AM   #10
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I don't see any need for a particular order of shutdown/startup of the computer/modem/router, unless Jerry1 can give a good reason why. I have reset my modem and router many times without shutting down my laptop and my laptop always recognizes when the internet is established without problem.


TV and stereo seem like obvious candidates to unplug as well.


I have reservations about flipping the main breaker. You don't know when they're really going to start, nor when they will finish, so you might have your power off a lot longer than needed. If you're going to be home, after they cut power you might want to flip individual breakers for your big appliances, and maybe the furnace, to avoid a surge when they reenergize. Leave a light or radio on so you know when power is back on. If you won't be home, I'd leave the furnace and refrigerator breakers on and plugged in so that they aren't off any longer than needed.
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:18 AM   #11
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If you put some 2 liter bottles of water in the freezer now, allow room for ice expansion, you will have a nice ice chest during the power outage if you don't open the freezer door and everything inside should stay nicely frozen.
Great idea!

Also, get those batteries and flashlights ready if you are staying home.

When there's a long schedule power outage where I live, once prepared, I tend to make that day a get out of the house and run some errands day. Helps to kill time for several hours and makes the outage seem shorter.
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:20 AM   #12
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Thanks to all for the very helpful suggestions.....going have to write them all down to I don't forget any.

Another question.....we have an old ....make that very old (decades) gas furnace with pilot light/thermocouple. I know it won't work when power goes off but will it automatically resume operation when power is back on? I know it has a switch (like for lights) inside the closet which I believe controls the blower motor, among other things. If I turn that off and then back on when power is back on, does the furnace resume normal operation .....no need to relight pilot? I'm sure we've had power outages in the past and I don't recall doing any special but you know how old memories are..........
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:27 AM   #13
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If you have an old-school burning pilot light it should keep on burning when the electricity goes out.
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:34 AM   #14
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In addition to adding 2 liter bottles of water to the freezer, freeze a couple extra ones and when the power goes out transfer them to the fridge to help keep it cool longer.
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:58 AM   #15
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If you have an old-school burning pilot light it should keep on burning when the electricity goes out.
Yes, I believe that's true. What about the main gas valve control...........the reason I remember that the switch controls the blower (and perhaps other things) is that once the main gas valve got stuck open and the flame kept going. I turned off the switch which turned off the blower but then things got overheated apparently because of no blower but continued flame. Charred smell, fire dept came over. Fortunately no damage but big memory.

If I turn that switch that controls the blower off, will the main gas valve stay off because there is no electrical signal telling it to come on. I guess I should turn the thermostat to min also but if the temperature is low enough that the furnace would want to come on, would it be prevented from doing so if that
switch is off. Wouldn't want that to happen(main flame) if no blower on.
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Old 01-11-2018, 10:47 AM   #16
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If your power is off, furnaces are designed not to come on, so that's not really a worry.

Once the power is back on, the furnace should work as normal, I've never had an issue with a furnace not coming back on after a power failure, regardless of it being pilot light or thermo igniter types
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Old 01-12-2018, 08:29 AM   #17
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Thanks, Sunset, appreciate the wisdom.
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Old 01-12-2018, 08:58 AM   #18
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I work at home. My Megacorp provided a UPS (uninterrupted power supply) to me. I plug in the modem, router, PC, laptop. A couple of times, when my power suddenly went off, UPS kicks in right away. I think it has few hours of power but I am not quite sure. So, if you have important data on computer that you maintain constantly, that would be something to consider long term.
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Old 01-12-2018, 09:27 AM   #19
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With the power off, I would check that the gas furnace pilot light is either lit and stays lit or shuts off and the gas shuts off, too. The thermocouple that the pilot light heats is screwed into the mini-gas regulator at the furnace, so if the thermocouple is not being heated, the regulator will shut off the gas until you relight the pilot light and it stays on. Newer systems work differently. I have one old system and one new system.

Same for gas water heaters.
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Old 01-12-2018, 10:05 AM   #20
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I work at home. My Megacorp provided a UPS (uninterrupted power supply) to me. I plug in the modem, router, PC, laptop. A couple of times, when my power suddenly went off, UPS kicks in right away. I think it has few hours of power but I am not quite sure. So, if you have important data on computer that you maintain constantly, that would be something to consider long term.

I would be surprised as most are in the minutes range of power, not hours... it is designed to let you power down normally or wait until the generator kicks in...

What power level do you have? It might be larger than I imagine and you really do have hours....
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