Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Windstorm Equipment Reviews

Well, its no surprise that, as I write this, we are still without power. Seeing the citywide destruction while working on Tuesday night, I'm surprosed that the majority of the city got its power back as soon as it did, When I got off work Wednesday morning, I ordered a couple of items from Amazon. I figured there was probably a run on most survival-themed merchandise in Spokane. Walking around a couple of days later, and seeing the overwhelming destruction, I figured we would be without power for at least a week (probably longer) and was glad for my purchases:

Mr. Beams MB480 UltraBright LED Camping Lantern. Found here.

This thing really puts out the light and the glow reminds me of my old Coleman lantern. It runs on four D cells. It has a USB port and does power up the phone - slowly. It went through the batteries faster than I expected, but it was used quite frequently to power up our three phones.

I really liked the Luci inflatable outdoor lamp. Found here.

It packs flat, and when ready to use, you blow it up like a little beachball. On the bottom is a solar panel and flat lithium ion battery. This thing will go pretty much all night. In the morning, flip it over and stick it in a window until you need it the next night.

I like to shop local, but when there is a run on emergency equipment, Amazon works great.

I considered a couple of other purchases - a four stroke quiet generator and an indoor safe propane heater. But, didn't pull the trigger on those.

The wood stove insert has been keeping the house warm. We have hot water and are able to cook because of gas appliances. After the ice storm 19 years ago, we converted our home to natural gas appliances wherever possible. It took 19 years, but it's finally paid off.

The only other thing that I have also been considering is a solar panel, battery and inverter set up. If we had those we could have saved the detritus that was in the refrigerator and powered our gas furnace. This set up would be silent and nonpolluting.

Other things that came in handy- our multitude of LED headlamps, a radio with a crank (the crank is stupid), a bike on a trainer to circulate some warm air, a cold garage, ice chests, a tiny usb power supply, LED candles, a thermos, games - especially Zombie Dice, the BGE, Netflix Kolchak the Night Stalker episodes on the Ipad, a couple of books - Spooky Spokane and So Anyway, the John Cleese bio, my ukulele and going to work.

When all is done, I will dedicate a shelf in the basement for all this stuff. It will be deployed for the Great Seattle Earthquake or the Yellowstone Super Caldera - whichever comes first.

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1 comment:

Lise said...

The solar-powered light is a great idea. I plan to get one for my disaster preparedness shelf.

The portable external battery I keep for my (crappy-batteried) iPhone came in handy. I charged in in my car and then could charge my phone three times from it.