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Matt's Picks


The power just came back on the fourth day, our second multi-day outage in two weeks and it's likely the power will go out again soon.

Each time we go through one of these power outs we come through with a renewed sense of gratitude for the everyday conveniences we so often take for granted.

We also learn something new. This time we learned how better to keep the hot water flowing, the radio on, and the lights on...

A biggie for us was the hot water. We're in earthquake country so tankless water heaters are the safer option. Even though these heaters use gas to heat the water, they still use some electricity so no power = no hot water!!! In a pinch, you might be able to use the backup battery you may have for your computer (that's what got us through these last few days). Just unplug your tankless heater from the wall and plug it into your battery backup when you need to take that hot shower. Since it looks like these power outs are going to be our "new normal" we were looking for a more permanent fix. Thanks to our neighbors' advice via Nextdoor.com, we found the HUGO Battery Backup for Tankless Water Heaters. Depending on your specific situation, you can expect up to 7 days of normal hot water with the power out. We bought ours through Amazon with free shipping.



When the power goes out, we lose our TV and our cell service (especially data) is unreliable too. We found it a great help and comfort to have good old AM radio at hand. We used a couple model radios, one designed for emergency situations and one designed for travel.


I
t was also a challenge to keep the lights on. This time we had great luck with the Milwaukee M18 RADIUS Compact Site Light. As with all Milwaukee tools, this light is an investment piece, but the quality is definitely top-shelf. This is definitely a case of you get what you pay for. With 4,400 lumens of light, this unit really lit up the living room well allowing us all to see and read comfortably.