‘Tis the season for hurricanes, tropical storms and the power outages that come with them. This could be caused by a tree falling on the lines, or a nearby generator blowing. Either way, one of the biggest questions you’re sure to have is if you can still use your plumbing during a power outage. Here are some things to know about plumbing as adverse weather rolls through your neighborhood and you lose power.
Does Your Water Still Work?
If you use the local water supply to bring you water, your water should still run which means you can wash your hands, brush your teeth, and even shower if you want to.
However, if you live in an area where your water comes from a well this might not be the case. Most well pumps typically need a constant stream of electricity to keep running. So, without that power, you cannot do anything.
What Won’t Work
There are three things will not work during a power outage:
- Water heaters – without electricity these will stop working. You still need some electricity to even get a gas water heater going. This can be a problem with a tankless water heater, but if you have a tanked water heater, then you may be in the clear. Keep in mind there is only so much water in the tank so use it sparingly.
- Sump pumps – Without the sump pump running, you won’t be able to redirect all the rain coming towards your home. We recommend you keep a few sandbags on hand especially during rainy and hurricane season, just in case.
- Toilets could also stop working – This doesn’t always happen, but when it does, it is pretty much the worst-case scenario. Under normal circumstances, all a toilet needs are some water and pressure provided by gravity. However, some models require a pump to work, and that pump could have been knocked out by the power shorting out.
- A generator will be handy as a power source to support plumbing in a power outage.
- A rain or large trash barrel can collect water that can be used to fill the toilet bowl or tank for flushing.
- Keep a supply of bottled water on hand (should equal 4 gallons per person each day). Don’t forget water for your pets!
- A propane- or battery-operated portable hot water unit can be used with a shower kit for bathing.
All Your Plumbing Needs from Integrity Home Solutions
In a pinch with your plumbing after an outage? Our expert plumbing contractors provide the highest level of service from St. Petersburgh to Brandon and Clearwater to South Tampa. Give Integrity Home Solutions a call at (813) 531-9480 or contact our plumbing pros online to get more info.