For homeowners in Maryland, a power outage is nothing all that new. Storms and grid problems are common enough, and so a few times a year, many of us can be stuck in the dark. As local electricians, we get plenty of questions about what to do during a power outage, how to deal with a power outage, and what you can do during an outage. On that last one, we hear “Can I shower safely during an outage?” all the time, and today we would like to take a moment to delve into the answer a bit.
Safety First: Don’t Even Try It During a Storm
Before we go any further, it is important to say that if the outage you’re experiencing is due to a storm, and that storm is still ongoing, do not take a shower. Cases are rare indeed of someone being struck by lightning while showering, but there are absolutely documented cases. Don’t take a chance—wait til the storm passes!
The Short Answer Is: “It Depends”
Why not just a yes or no answer? Because it does, in fact, depend. It depends on what kind of water heater you have, how long the power has been out, and if you’ve been trying to use the hot water for something else before showering.
If your home is equipped with an electric or gas water heater then the answer is that you likely do have some hot water left in the tank, and since tanks are insulated, the water is going to stay hot for a couple of hours. However, once you use that water up, it’s gone until the power is restored, so keep in mind your priorities if something else needs hot water first.
If you use a tankless water heater, then you’re unfortunately out of luck on this one (unless you have another solution on hand—more on that in a bit). Tankless units do not have a tank and do not maintain a supply, heating water on-demand instead. That means that without access to power, you’re not going to get hot water at all. It’s one of the few drawbacks of these systems—as such, it’s something you should plan for in the event of an emergency.
How to Ensure Your Maryland Home Always Has Hot Water
As we mentioned earlier, outages aren’t uncommon for home and business owners in our area. If you use a traditional water heater during an outage, you’ll have a short supply. If you use tankless, you’ll have no supply. But the solution is simple: never have a lack of electrical access!
A whole-home generator system keeps you in stable power at all times, whether a storm cuts utility power or if utility power goes down for another reason. That means you can have all the showers you want. And you can cook, watch television, utilize your computer—just go about life as normal.
Whole-Home Generator Systems in Gaithersburg, MD
Interested in keeping your home safe and secure during an outage? The experts at GAC Services offer generator system installation, maintenance, and repair.