Our power grid is not as invulnerable as it may seem. A massive storm, civil unrest, an EMP, a solar flare, a terrorist attack – these and other incidences could knock the power out for weeks, months or even longer. Thankfully, there are alternatives to conventional power that can provide you with the light you need in an emergency. These are listed below for your reference.
Solar panels are, in many ways, the ideal form of emergency lighting as they cannot only light up the home but also run important electric appliances. These panels are available in various types and sizes and can be connected to solar batteries that store power for when it is needed.
If you opt to generate your own power using solar panels, be sure an expert that knows how to install not only the panels but also the wiring installs the system. Additionally, the company that installs your panels should also connect your solar batteries to the panels for power storage.
If you do not have the funds needed to install solar panels on your roof, then outdoor solar lighting can be a good alternative. These lights can be purchased at a reasonable price online and are very easy to install. Simply leave the solar lights out during the day (be sure they are placed in an area that gets plenty of sunlight) and then bring them in at night. They should last the whole night long if they have been charged properly; what is more, many solar powered lights give off a lot of light.
Lanterns may be old fashioned but they are certainly a good source of light. Popular options include oil powered lanterns, propane lanterns and kerosene lanterns. The latter two get so hot that in some cases they can be used to cook food; however, be aware that you will need proper ventilation to use either a kerosene or propane lantern. Additionally, it is never safe to leave any lantern on when asleep, as they can pose a fire hazard.
Battery Operated Lighting
Battery-powered lighting is not the best long-term emergency lighting option even if you buy a large quantity of batteries. The reason for this is that some battery operated lights use up batteries quite quickly and these can be next to impossible to replace in an emergency. Even so, battery operated lighting is quite affordable and can be a good option for short-term power loss.
Tap lights are one convenient form of battery powered lighting. Some of these can run for 100 hours or even longer on three triple A batteries. If you opt to buy these, be sure they are bright and have LED bulbs.
Flashlights are perhaps the most common form of battery operated lighting and are highly recommended for any prepper. While they do not provide enough power to light up a large area of the home, they are versatile and thus perfect for situations when you may not be able to stay in your home after a natural or man-made disaster. Tactical flashlights with 200 to 300 lumens are ideal, as these can be used not only to give light but also blind a would-be attacker.
Candles are perhaps the least sophisticated form of emergency lighting; however, you should always have some on hand for emergencies. Candles can be used indoors or outdoors, are easy to light and do not require the sun, batteries or fuel. They come in handy for short-term power loss and some can burn for a long time.
Thick candles with a wide base are recommended, as they are less likely to tip over and accidentally catch things on fire. Candles in a jar are ideal as the wax stays in the jar and significantly extends the candle’s life span.
Having emergency lighting on hand can mean the difference between life and death (or at least serious injury). In fact, you should have more than one of the lighting forms mentioned above so you have something to fall back on in case one form of lighting cannot be used. Consider the above-mentioned options and pick the ones that best suit your needs and budget.