Author Topic: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?  (Read 4694 times)

Offline CTF250

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Up here in the northeast we have had our share of extreme weather, chilling cold, collapsing roofs and massive snow lately.  We've come to accept these conditions as they have unfolded upon us and have prepared for them with experience but not without learning something new along the way. 

 As the title of the thread sez, with all these weather events happening throughout the country how have these events affected you personally?

What successes were there in your prep efforts and what lessons were learned and what holes were identified that need to be filled?

So come on share your thoughts, ice and snow in areas that never had them beofre, rolling electrical blackouts, loss of natural gas for periods of time, let hear your stories...

Personally here I learned the importance of having a roof rake stored away to get the 2 foot plus accumulation off my roof and we learned a new way of getting in touch of distant relatives who lost phone system due to ice storm wires down.   ( had a friend of mine with a ham do a long distance "wellness check" to a relatives house in Tennesee via the ARES network.)

Offline NotoriousAPP

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2011, 04:24:58 PM »
I'm down in Austin, TX.  We just had an inch of snow drop last night.  I know, it's insignificant compared to up there in the north but what it does mean is that everyone freaks out at the slightest hint of ice or snow and generally people are unprepared to deal with these events.  I learned to keep a plumber's number handy and do something to make sure he does your jobs first.  I have a duplex where the sewer drain froze and there's sewage backing up into the house.  It's been going on for 40 hours and still no plumber has arrived to clear the blockage.

Offline TNVolunteer

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2011, 04:32:26 PM »
I too live in TX, and I've learned to have a back-up home heat source.  Not something one normally considers here, normally is cooling, but looking at ice on the power lines made me think.

Offline TexDaddy

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2011, 04:59:57 PM »
I learned not to start the washing machine until after I am sure the drain pipe is not frozen.

Offline daved

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2011, 08:33:39 PM »
It isn't so much what I learned, but what I think I got the wife to learn.
I have a BOB with a complete change of clothes, water, full winter gear, at a minimum a half a tank of gas, etc. Sometimes I think the wife thinks I am a bit crazy with that kind of stuff. After watching a bunch of cars stuck on the expressway for something like 8 hours, I think she sees the wisdom of being able to take care of yourself in that kind of situation. I don't think she will actually do anything about it herself, but I know she would be ok with me getting her a little more prepared. At least I can set her car up with some winter gear now.

Offline LJH

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2011, 09:18:18 PM »
I learned not to start the washing machine until after I am sure the drain pipe is not frozen.

Snort.  :rofl:

We didn't get near as much snow as the 4 ft. that accumulated last year but it was colder for longer periods of time and at lower altitudes than usual. Lots of frozen pipes down in Kanab (5,000 ft.) Up here our water pipes are deep, propane was topped off and we heat with wood anyway. The pasture road washed out but that's a fairly regular occurance and we keep a stockpile of rocks & rough gravel to fill those places until it's dry enough for a proper fix.

What did catch us off-guard is slides. A couple that mostly blocked the driveway and one that covered the path from the house up to where my greenhouse is going to live. So what we learned is that some remedial grading is in order this Spring.

Offline Herbalpagan

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2011, 06:46:32 AM »
We werewell prepared, safe and snug. HOWEVER...tools that you rely on can break, like the tractor freezing up and then the snow blower attachment throwing a chain, then a bearing.  lol  Live and learn.  Now we know, it wouldn't hurt to have an extra set of parts for many things. This time we didn't loose our power, and we'd have been fine, but you never know what little thing will throw a monkey wrench in your preparedness plans. Last ice storm, it was the genny decided to break. 
You prepare the best you can.

Offline P_Coltrane

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2011, 10:18:27 AM »
Battery powered puck lights with adhesive on the back are great additions to flashlights, lanterns and candles.  While not absolutely necessary, they are great for under cabinet lighting in the kitchen and add additional hands-free light while cooking when the power goes out.

Offline rustyknife

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2011, 10:36:23 AM »
Picked up a flatbed load in Malad, Idaho. Temp was -3 with a 25mph breeze which made the chill factor about -12 or so. Of course had to load and tarp it outside. About the third trip into the cab of the truck to warm my face, I remembered a full face stocking cap I had buried at the bottom of my bag. Made a huge difference. Also, need a pair of ski gloves next time.

Offline OKGranny

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2011, 10:41:31 AM »
I learned there is a reason I live in Oklahoma, I'm tired of the snow and ice and I would never make it anywhere it lasted more than a few days. Other than that things have gone great. Now could someone change the weather patterns so we don't get the snow forcast for tomorrow, Monday, and Tuesday?

Offline 13F10

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2011, 07:07:15 PM »
Found out that the mr. heater "big buddy" will heat the family room when it's 11 degrees outside and the power goes out. Yup, 11 in Dallas a couple nights ago.  No fire in the FP to check the heater's ability, worked fine.

Offline leprachuan45

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2011, 09:08:50 AM »
Love my Big Buddy heater. Probably one of the best prepping purchases i've made. I've got enough propane to power it for close to a month. I used that and a kerosene heater and could heat the entire house. I learned I need to double my kerosene on hand. I wouldn't have to have it, but much more convenient. Maybe buy another Big buddy. I'm starting to think maybe a snow plow on my old 4 wheel drive would be a wise investment also. LOL

Offline Ken325

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2011, 11:09:22 AM »
We had about 20 houses in my neighborhood that had broken pipes.  It was under 20 for about 3 days straight in North Texas.  Our plumbing is not made for that.  It was a disaster. 

Best thing about being a prepper is that I did not need to buy groceries.  I baked bread and enjoyed the time off.  I will pick up another Mr heater soon.   

Offline mvrck

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2011, 02:28:20 PM »
Note to self after long Texas freeze:

Re-stock PVC fittings before the freeze, so I can make repairs without going out...


Offline swoods

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2011, 02:36:31 PM »
I say Thank Goodness for my 4 wheel drive Ford Escape. I did not loose power, had Daughter Number One, son-in-law, and two princess granddaughters (cuz they had no power) and we did not need a thing. Well, maybe some cat litter since son-in-law got the car stuck in the drive way. That has been fixed, cat litter is now in the garage. He had nothing to use to get unstuck............ah, such a grasshopper.

I usually have cat litter, but alas it was in the catbox and I had no extra. Shame on me.

Offline daved

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2011, 04:04:49 PM »

I usually have cat litter, but alas it was in the catbox and I had no extra. Shame on me.

That is the one thing I ran out of during the storm too. I needed mine for the cats not for traction. I usually buy a half dozen bags or so when it is on sale, but I let it slide for too long and it came back to bite me.

Offline inthego

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2011, 07:33:32 PM »
In Sunny El Paso TX. we got freezing temp, with power outages leading to water outages and Natural gas failures. So I updated "my list"

1. Printed institutions for starting my Generator. (yeah I use it from time to time but when your cold and in the freak'n dark with a head lamp it would help)
2. Have more 2 cycle oil on hand for my Gen. (I had only 2 quarts - it was sufficient but with way more fuel than oil that is a hole I will fill)
3. More than 2 oil Lamps ( I think that 6 would be better )
4. More lamp oil on hand
5. Lamp wicks (backup backup backup)
6. Battery backup ( would have been nice to have that for a quick power hit - we had power outage off and on over and over ) Then used the wall power to recharge when the power was on for 1 to 2 hours...
7. Propane heater. (backup heat - I used the Gen and power heater but not the best way to use my fuel preps )
8. Thick CLEAR plastic for glass window repair..  I have thin clear plastic but in a car it did not work (My son's truck electric windows got stuck down and would tear when driving.  I had very thick black plastic for my BOB and camping runs but you can't see though it now can I...
9. A camping coffee percolator. I have a French press that we used but.. backup backup backup

Offline Oakie

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2011, 06:24:42 PM »
I've learned that my propane 'fireplace' while pretty is no replacement for the big heater that used to heat a huge area of my house.  I should have placed it in a bedroom as planned.  I bought it used and suspect it needs a fan of some sort to push the heat out and away from the wood cabinet.  If I could turn it up a bit higher it would be great.  Fortunately I did not loose power this time so it allowed me to 'cozy up' the living area and shut off other areas of the house.  My heat pump is not terribly efficient when it's really cold and stays on auxilary.
I learned that snow blows into my chicken house and into the nests if the wind is bad enough.  I will have plexiglas over those windows before next winter I hope.  The chickens were plenty warm as they have access to another room and their roost is located on the other wall but my eggs were frozen.
I greatly appreciated my new water faucets that do not freeze as I have animals to haul water to and that would have been MANY trips inside with buckets.
The foul and dogs and cat appreciated my efforts to use up grains/pasta and meat that have been stored long enough.

Offline ChrisFox

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Re: So, with all this weather going on around you, What did you learn?
« Reply #18 on: February 12, 2011, 01:27:26 PM »
Also a fellow Texan. I learned I do not have the knowledge or the correct clothing for being out in the cold. The jacket I own is perpetually stuck in the back of the closet out of sight out of mind. It's fine if there is no wind but anything above a sneeze and it's next to useless. Need gloves, just sticking hands in the jacket pockets don't work. Blue jeans aren't much better. Need a way to keep face warm, jacket has a hood which worked great unless I was walking directly into the wind.

Next will be dealing with it being wet as well as being cold. Learned the pack I use is not as water resistant as it I thought it would be. The stuff in the inner core stayed dry but most everything in the outside pockets got soaked.