If you live in an area that is prone to power outages, one of the first things to do is gather supplies. Your supplies should always include as much ice as you can store. Ice can be invaluable during a power outage. It will keep your food cool, ensure special medications remain at the proper temperature, and help you cool off during hot weather with no air conditioning. If you do not have an abundance of ice chests or other ice-storing containers, never fear. The following are some unusual but useful ways you can easily store ice during your power outage:
Though it may sound odd, the washing machine is a fantastic place to store ice during a power outage. The basin of a washing machine can easily hold a lot of refrigerated items because of its depth. As the ice melts, you do not have to be worried about it leaking everywhere. Once you regain power, simply turn the washing machine on a spin cycle and allow the water to drain away.
A kiddie pool is another option for ice storage. You can fill a pool full of ice and store drinks, water, and any other type of food item. If you can fit the kiddie pool inside your home, be sure to place it on a floor that will not be damaged by water, as the plastic sides of the pool will have some condensation. Placing large garbage bag underneath can help. If you don't want to leave the pool inside, place it under a carport or shaded area and cover it with an insulated blanket to help prevent the ice from melting too quickly.
The bathtub is another option for ice storage. Like the washing machine, ice storage in the tub can make for very easy clean up once the ice begins to melt. However, you should only use your bathtub for ice if you have enough drinking water stored for the duration of your outage. Many people will fill the bathtub with water to use during an outage. Water is a higher priority, so be sure to evaluate your water storage before you utilize the tub as a refrigeration source.
Keeping your food cold during a power outage can be easy if you think outside the box. Be sure to not store any meat in the ice, as it will not keep it cold enough to safely eat. If you have an abundance of meat in a deep freezer, the better option is to leave it there for the duration of the outage. Most deep freezers can safely cool items much longer than kitchen freezers, and are much safer than an ice bath. Contact a service that provides emergency ice if you need to keep food cool during a power outage.