❄️ How To Protect Your Home During Winter Power Outages ❄️

Winter Storm Uri was a tragic event in 2021 that resulted in a total of 4.5 million homes and businesses being left without power and electricity at its peak. More than 200 people died in the incident, and there was about $295 billion in damages. Since that time, authorities have not taken steps to improve or update the Texas power grid to prevent another disaster. Now in January 2024, we might be facing similar Texas winter outages. 

Pablo Vial took to LinkedIn to share his terrifying experience in the winter storm: “In February of 2021, I lost power for 5 days…On day two, the house was 30 degrees so we went to stream baby shows from my phone in my car in order to keep warm. At the end of the day, I was forced to abandon ship…we did not get power back until day 5.” Stories like these were a common experience for millions of Texans during the storm.

Here’s the solution Pablo Vial found to prevent his terrifying experience from ever occurring again: “I took matters into my own hands and invested in a battery backup from Good Faith Energy for my house. We have not lost power once since doing so, despite the rolling blackouts that my neighborhood now sees as a regular occurrence.” You can read Pablo’s full story here.

Keep reading for our tips to keep you and your family safe and warm this winter during upcoming extremely cold temperatures.

ERCOT Has Issued an Upcoming Weather Watch

ERCOT has announced a Weather Watch for January 14-17, 2024. The temperatures are estimated to go down to the single digits with possible snow and freeze. With the expected surge in demand on the Texas grid due to the cold weather, ONCOR is actively monitoring the situation. With the potential for lower reserves, it may result in blackouts across the state. Consequently, it’s crucial for residents to stay informed and take necessary precautions during this period of inclement weather.

Preparing for the Unpredictable

As the memories of Snowmageddon and the Texas Snowpocalypse still linger, we stress the importance of proactive measures. With the Texas grid becoming increasingly susceptible to blackouts, the need for solar and battery backups becomes paramount. There is a potential consequence of relying solely on solar panels. You see, the role of battery backups, such as the Tesla Powerwall, ensures a continuous power supply.

How Can You Protect Yourself in this Cold Weather? A Battery Backup is One Option.

Amid the chaos of widespread blackouts during Texas winter outages, the combination of distributed solar power and battery backups provides Texans with a powerful solution. Even amidst Texas’ power outage turmoil & unpredictability, a solar & battery system ensures a continuous power supply, demonstrating the viability of solar and battery backups even in the harshest conditions.

Our recommendation is to purchase a battery backup for your home. There are many options to choose from such as the Tesla Powerwalls, Enphase 5P Battery, or the EcoFlow Delta Portable Battery series. These batteries seamlessly backup your home’s technology and appliances that you won’t even notice if the power went out due to the unreliable Texas grid. When looking for a battery backup installer, make sure they are a trustworthy, top-rated solar contractor, like Good Faith Energy. We take pride in restoring faith in good contracting.

How to Prepare your Battery for Cold Weather

If you already own a battery backup, there are ways you can optimize your battery for the upcoming weather. The obvious tip is to make sure the battery is fully charged in preparation for the Texas winter outages. You can do so by manually adjusting the settings for the batteries. For example, the Tesla Powerwall has an app on your phone on which you can adjust the settings. You would need to update the settings for the Tesla Powerwall to stay (mostly) charged, in case of a power outage. We do not recommend activating the storm watch feature for Tesla, and instead urge you to change the settings manually. Additionally, make sure to cover your batteries with a moving blanket to cover up your batteries before the storm hits, especially if your batteries are outdoors. If you lose power and the batteries get too cold, they could potentially go into safety mode, turn off, and stop discharging power to your house. Leave some ventilation access on the left and right side of the battery in order to not completely block air flow.

Your Backup Batteries’ Resilience Features

By proactively “charging” the backup battery in anticipation of storms, this technology provides a reliable energy source during power outages. During hours or even days of grid-outages and brownouts, the Tesla Powerwall for example, can seamlessly transition between solar and grid power, ensuring uninterrupted energy supply.

Will my Home Stay Powered if I Only Install Solar Panels?

Unfortunately, your home will not remain powered if you only have solar panels on your property. The reason you need a battery is to keep your lights on even during the night. Another reason is that solar panels are installed as grid-tied solar, which is secured to the grid using a solar inverter. Install your solar panels with a battery backup to keep your power on during a blackout. Good Faith Energy offers many battery-backup options like the Tesla Powerwall, Enphase Battery, and the Franklin WH Backup Solution

Why Should You Get a Solar System with a Battery Backup?

A solar battery may be the perfect solution if you want to have your power on even when the grid is out and the sun is down. This allows you to be almost entirely energy independent despite outside circumstances. You are a great candidate for solar energy if you:

  • Value energy independence
  • Keep yourself & your family safe
  • Need to keep medical devices on at all times
  • Possess valuable substances that need to be kept refrigerated (such as; baby formula and various medications)

With a solar powered battery backup, you can collect energy from your solar panels during the day. At night, the same energy can be used to power your electrical devices such as your A.C., lights, T.V., refrigerator, computer, or anything else that needs electricity. And if you have a surplus of energy, it can be supplied back to the grid, and you will be given an energy credit to be used at night. As a result, your monthly electric utility bill will be reduced by the solar energy generated by your solar system during the month.

Building a Sustainable Future

While the Texas grid faces challenges in sustaining itself, solar and storage technologies hold the key to a more resilient and sustainable future. Here at Good Faith Energy, we are advocates for the adoption of these systems as an effective countermeasure to the current grid vulnerabilities.

Beyond Return on Investment: Power Security and Peace of Mind

When installing solar & batteries, there are intangible benefits of energy security and peace of mind, going beyond your return on investment. We highly  encourage our customers to consider all of the benefits, particularly those offered by Good Faith Energy, for customized solutions that address individual energy consumption habits. Watch our CEO, Mo Abdalla’s power experience in the 2021 winter storm with a Tesla Solar Roof & Tesla Powerwalls. He is living proof that even in the toughest of Texas’ winter conditions, you too can keep your lights on and your family warm.

In conclusion, there is an unseen necessity for transformative home energy solutions. Solar and battery backups emerge as a beacon of hope, providing not only a reliable energy source but also contributing to the creation of a more resilient and stable energy landscape for the Lone Star State.

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