It’s winter. Time to pull out the extra blankets, turn on the lights, and snuggle in to read a good book or watch your favorite movie.
Winter can be a great time to hang out at home and get more done around the house. But all of that can come to a screeching halt if the power flickers off.
Why does it happen more in the winter? There are good reasons for that.
The most obvious is the weather. Temperatures drop. Winds blow. Ice forms and can cause a number of problems. Whether a tree branch falls on a wire, or a power pole goes down, all of that will take time to repair the power and return electricity to your home.
But you don’t have power lines, you say? Everything is underground where you live? That doesn’t stop the problems from forming. When the temperatures keep dropping, the buried power lines can become stiffer. When trees rock and sway in storms and blizzards, that swaying action can impact tree roots too. And if they are intertwined with power lines, it can cause damage.
Just like you, power lines do well when the temperatures and weather conditions are comfortable. But when temperatures rise into the triple digits, or fall well below zero, they react accordingly. They have to work a little bit harder to keep producing at the desired output level. And sometimes it just doesn’t keep up with demand.
Then there is also the fact that our power grid system throughout the United States is aging. We might replace items as they break or wear down, but overall, we have a decades-old infrastructure. That can cause problems to snowball rapidly, especially once a problem occurs.
Finally, it’s also important to realize that the colder it is, the more demand there is, especially at peak hours. That’s why you’ll often find power outages occurring at the most inopportune times - when everyone is returning home from work, for instance.
While there is nothing you can do to prevent the power from going off, you can ensure you do your part by maintaining your heating equipment and ensuring it’s in proper working order. If you have at-risk family members, consider installing a generator that can kick in and provide the necessary resources you’ll need until the power is restored.