Top 8 Ways to Stay Warm in a Power Outage

People have been surviving and thriving without electricity for a long time. If you live in an extremely cold place, you probably have absolutely no issues staying warm without electricity.

However, there could also be issues because of our modern dependence on electricity. Forced heat or pellet stoves which use electricity for the fan and/or igniter and other things.

We have come a long way to find ways to keep us comfortable, which isn’t a bad thing!

However, when the electricity goes out, such as in the case with the massive snowstorm in southern California, what will you do to stay warm?

Here are the top 8 ways to stay warm without electricity:

Wood Stove –

Of course, the wood stove is an ideal heat source if you live in an area that has plenty of trees. A wood stove will work if you live in an area where you just can’t cut down the trees yourself, or are unable to, if you simply buy the wood and have a good stockpile.

Another thing to consider about a wood stove is space, placement and type of wood stove.

Not all wood stoves are made the same. You’ll want to find a wood stove that is as efficient as possible. The more efficient, the better heat output and less wood you’ll need to use overall.

You’ll need to have sufficient space so there’s plenty of empty space around the wood stove for safety.

Getting the wood stove itself is fairly affordable, it’s usually the installation that is the most expensive part. That will need to be budgeted and considered.

Propane Heater –

The propane heaters that attach to the walls are easy to install. They’re also really efficient and run extremely hot. These are great for smaller spaces, but they can heat up quite a large space, too. They come with an internal temperature gauge so it turns on and off on its own.

No electricity is needed! Just needs propane!

Mr. Buddy Heater –

Mr. Buddy Heaters are a great propane heating option as well, but on a smaller scale. You can hook up the 1lb propane tanks to it or you can get an adapter to hook up a larger propane tank to it for longer use. These run hot and they’re super efficient. I recommend using these for smaller, one room spaces.

Zero Degree Sleeping Bag –

Every household should have some sleeping bags, not just to use while camping but to use while at home during a power outage. I highly recommend zero degree sleeping bags. Everyone needs to have sleeping bags at their home. You can always place an additional blanket inside.

Wear Layers –

Speaking of an additional blanket inside of a sleeping bag, wear layers! But more importantly, wear the right clothing. Synthetics, wool, etc. Anything not cotton. Hats, gloves, wool socks, jackets, warm pants, etc. Layer up!

Kerosene Heater –

These are similar to Mr. Buddy Heaters as they are safe to use indoors. You can even get the kerosene heaters that are stoves, too! They’re also very efficient and run nice and hot. Great for heating smaller spaces.

Drink Warm Liquids –

Even if it’s just warm water, warm liquids will help to keep your core warm. Warm soups, of course, are also great options. Be sure to have plenty of alternative cooking options to warm up your liquids.

Stick to one room –

There’s always one room in the house that is the most efficient at keeping warm. Everyone should huddle into that one room, along with their heat source, to stay as warm as possible. You may even have to all sleep in the same bed.

Alternatively, if you are unable to move your heat source into a room, you can setup a tent inside of a larger area, facing the front door toward the heat so you’re warming a smaller area (the tent). You can also place some blankets

Additional tips –

  • Not all heat sources are the same. A candle might warm your hands, but it won’t warm a body or a room.
  • Make your home/room more energy efficient by sealing cracks, installing extra insulation in the attic and underneath the house, and so on.
  • Have multiple options. Just because you have a propane heater or a wood stove, it never hurts to have additional heating options available.
  • Stock up on the fuel sources needed for each heating source and store them properly.
  • Some exercise and movement is ok, but sweating when you’re layered up is generally not your friend in the winter, even if you have the right clothing, best to avoid sweating.

Be prepared before something happens.

If you are on vacation, be sure to ask about alternative heating options or provide your own.

Make a budget and start putting together a list of items you’ll need to stay warm with or without electricity.

What options do you use to stay warm no matter what?

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Morgan is the founder of Rogue Preparedness. She has been a prepper for over a decade. She's a wife, mother of two daughters and is homesteading off grid. She teaches people how to be prepared for emergencies and disasters.

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