You have your freezer stocked full of a month’s supply of freezer meals when the worst thing possible happens… the power goes out. If you do lose power, here are tips to try and save what you have in your freezer.
Do NOT open the freezer door. Yes, it is very tempting to “check” on how your freezer is doing while the power is out. But this is the WORST possible thing you can do. Even opening the freezer for just a second allows precious cold air escape, while allowing warm air to enter. This is costly because there is no power to re-chill the air in the freezer.
Keep your freezer fully stocked if you are concerned about a power outage. A fully stocked freezer will remain at a safe temperature for about two days. A half filled freezer will last about one day. If you open the freezer door while the power is out, the length of time the goods will stay freezer safe for drops dramatically.
As soon as the power turns on, check your freezer. First, check your thermometer to see what the internal freezer temperature is. Then, check the items in the freezer. Are any meats soft? If any raw meats have begin to defrost, pop them into the fridge to continue defrosting, then use or cook and refreeze. Never refreeze uncooked meat.
If you know the power will be out for more than a day, check with family and friends on the status of their power and freezer space. If possible, get a cooler with ice and transport some of your frozen food to other’s freezer in order to save what you can.
You can also use a freezer alarm, this way you will not exactly when the temperature has risen enough that you need to take preventative action, without lifting the lid and letting precious cold air out.