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Power Cut

Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎02-08-2007

Power Cut

We had a power cut due to the weather....only 45 minutes duration but it got me thinking.....

If electricity is your only source of power and keeping in mind no new properties from 2021 will have gas boilers fitted, then you could be in trouble.

We have discussed emergency lighting in a recent post but......it's not just about lighting.....imagine in the middle of a cold winter with a power cut lasting a day or more, how do you keep warm ? How do you cook any food ?...How do you charge that electric car that could take you somewhere warm ?

Fortunately we also have gas but as Gas boilers are phased out I cannot see Gas companies running any new pipes to new builds.

35 REPLIES 35
wotsup
Seasoned Champion
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Re: Power Cut

We have gas,  but the central heating still needs electrickery to work,  we had the fan assisted gas fire ripped out about 10 years ago and a blanced flue ( does not need any air from the room ) type gas fire fitted in lounge, because of the balanced flue it is about 95% efficient ( the hot gasses leaving are used to pre-warm the incoming cold air from outside ).  At its highest setting ( 6.5KW output ) it can keep the whole house reasonably warm....

 

With electric lorries, busses, trains, vans and cars and also all electric houses and factories we are going to need a quantum leap in supply of electricity and a major rethink and rebuild of the grid system....

agedgopher
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Re: Power Cut

Having recently had several power cuts I can confirm that a gas supply is useless when there is a loss of electricity. Central heating boilers will not run. Our cuts lasted from 5pm to 2am on the first occasion, the second was 3 pm to 8pm and the final one was 5.15pm to 8 pm.

Thanks to a well insulated bungalow we kept fairly comfortable but are investigating alternative lighting and heat options. The major drawback is the loss of ability to make warm drinks!

Baldrick1
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Re: Power Cut

@agedgopher 

I have a gas barbeque. When we had a kitchen make over I bought a camping gizmo that has two cooking rings and a grill. This packs away when not in use. I noted that this uses gas at the same pressure as the bbq I went to a caravan shop and bought a regulator of the same fitting as the bbq and a longer length of gas pipe for the camping gizmo.

In emergencies this is set up and keeps us going with drinks and hot food using gas from the fairly large bbq canister.

With respect of phasing out gas I wonder what planet these people are on? We now only generate a part of our electricity from green sources, the average household gas consumption is about four times the energy in kWh as electricity, then we add in electric cars and commercial requirements. That's one hell of a lot of windmills!

The whole concept surrounding sustainable energy is currently a total farce.

Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎06-11-2014

Re: Power Cut

I've a few short-term solutions in the house to stay warm with, gas heaters & paraffin heaters mainly, but also mantle lamps (also gas & paraffin) which help to put out heat, but that only lasts as long as there is fuel...

 

As for the boiler, well, I have a Honda EX650 generator that can be utilised to run it if need be, but again, as long as fuel lasts, though this also comes with the problem of people seeing I have something they don't and stealing it, so security would need to be tightened for that to be implemented...

 

Cooking, I have two camping stoves (the ones that use the aerosol-type cartridges, rather than the traditional type that has your pan a foot in the air ready to tip boiling water over your lap), again only good as long as there is fuel, and there's the barbecue if things get desperate as I have a couple of sacks of charcoal available, so long as the weather is conducive to outdoor cooking of course...

 

And as for keeping things charged, well, I don't have an electric boogaloo, so I'm good there, but I have a couple solar panels in my bedroom window keeping an ex-car battery topped up to run a few things from 12 volts, and the cheapo solar controller I have has a couple USB sockets on it to charge phones and USB-chargeable LED lighting, so not being left in the dark or in an information blackout...

Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎02-08-2007

Re: Power Cut


@agedgopher wrote:

Having recently had several power cuts I can confirm that a gas supply is useless when there is a loss of electricity. Central heating boilers will not run. Our cuts lasted from 5pm to 2am on the first occasion, the second was 3 pm to 8pm and the final one was 5.15pm to 8 pm.

Thanks to a well insulated bungalow we kept fairly comfortable but are investigating alternative lighting and heat options. The major drawback is the loss of ability to make warm drinks!


Quite true, the central heating will not work if the electricity is off.

I should have added in my post we have a gas fire that needs no electric supply so we are lucky, however without the boiler working any hot water needed for drinks or washing and it's a pan on the gas hob.

agedgopher
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Re: Power Cut

@gleneagles 

Unfortunately our gas hob is an all electric halogen jobby. So it is a camping gas stove for us.

Must remember to buy a new kettle, it would be a shame to melt the current one!

Community Veteran
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Re: Power Cut

@twocvbloke 

Odd really as we get older we become more aware of these things and take some precautions in case they happen but the very people who need to be doing this is the young as these things will get worse with time.......I guess a lot of younger people might consider the most annoying thing is loss of broadband due to the power cut....

Many of us will be long gone by the time things get really bad....

With apologies to anyone young on the forum.

😀

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Re: Power Cut

I've had a fascination in "alternatives" since I was a kid, so always kept something on hand to maintain a backup of somesort, but the current things I have are mostly partly due to my hobbies, repairing the generator was certainly a task, but worth it, and the paraffin stuff is collecatbel vintage stuff that I like, but also practical and useful, so I keep it on hand... 🙂

 

Even recently with the boiler fiasco, the paraffin & gas heaters were put to use to maintain heat in the house until I sorted out the leaks myself, it's just handy to be both knowledgeable in such things and to have backups on hand...

Lægen
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Re: Power Cut

@gleneagles 

Unfortunately our gas hob is an all electric halogen jobby. So it is a camping gas stove for us.

Must remember to buy a new kettle, it would be a shame to melt the current one!



We have a couple of these.

 

PORT GAS.jpg

 

Along with a few gas cartridges.

Last used about 4 years ago.....

 

But.... you never know !

 

Also a couple of normal gas hob kettles. (Charity Shops)

Plus a nice sized pan.

Community Veteran
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Registered: ‎01-08-2007

Re: Power Cut


@twocvbloke wrote:

I've had a fascination in "alternatives" since I was a kid, so always kept something on hand to maintain a backup of somesort, but the current things I have are mostly partly due to my hobbies, repairing the generator was certainly a task, but worth it, and the paraffin stuff is collecatbel vintage stuff that I like, but also practical and useful, so I keep it on hand... 🙂

 

Even recently with the boiler fiasco, the paraffin & gas heaters were put to use to maintain heat in the house until I sorted out the leaks myself, it's just handy to be both knowledgeable in such things and to have backups on hand...


Like you I've always liked to be able to survive via my own means (no family to helpl out so i kinda have to) but electricity is something i've often taken for granted as I've never really suffered much of a power outage.

 

With that said a couple of times i have mulled over a generator and yesterday i must admit when i heard someone else talking about one i found myself thinking it might not be such a bad idea as our central heating is also dead without electric. I already have a wire going through the wall for the garage (plug-in RCD on the house end which could be removed and repurposed for a socket instead). The generator could then sit up the end of the garden by the shed.

I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
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Re: Power Cut

Make sure to avoid the 2-stroke variety of generators though, you'll want to commit engine murder after a minute of one of those things screaming away!!!

 

Inverter generators are handy as they can ramp the engin speed up & down based on load, so can run pretty quietly which is handy when you want to keep the thing and not have it disappear in the back of a dodgy transit pickup, my Honda EX650 is pretty quiet, but it's a fixed-RPM job so it runs at the same revs regardless of running a 4 watt LED bulb or a 450w heater at 50Hz (can go up to 550w continuous in 60Hz mode, but that makes it run louder)...

Lægen
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Re: Power Cut

I once had a 12v car/leisure battery working into an inverter, purely to run the Gas CH timer & boiler/pump.

But, as luck would have it, never needed to use it !

 

Extra woolies, thermals and warm duvets these days. Plus Powerbanks for phones & tablets.

 

Additionally an escape plan.................... involving a car !

idonno
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Re: Power Cut

Oil boilers are just as bad. No electricity, no heating. Worse mistake the previous owner did was install a combi boiler. When the boiler goes down no heating and no hot water. Washing by kettle fill isn't great. At least with a tank, you've usually got some form of back up for a couple of hours. But as usual if the electricity falls over, sunk totally. For emergency cooking, bought a gas burner which does the job but it's only been used once in 9 years.

 

I'd really like a multi-fuel woodburner installed but the chimney would need opening up again and I really cannot justify the cost involved.

Ever helpful. :grin: Sure, I’d love to help you out. Now which way did you come in?
Community Veteran
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Re: Power Cut

Never thought of that re combi boilers, fortunately we just have a standard boiler with a hot water tank, so at least up to 12 hours of hot water even with no electricity.