What to Do When the Power Goes Out: Managing Your Refrigerator Food

If you’ve ever experienced a power outage, you know how quickly the contents of your refrigerator can become a concern. A sudden power loss can lead to spoilage of your perishable food, wasting money and posing health risks. Here’s how you can manage your refrigerator food effectively during a power outage.

How to Keep Your Food Safe and Fresh During a Power Outage

In such situations, having a reliable backup power source like the Anker home battery backup can be a lifesaver. This device is designed with a plug-and-play feature for home backup, offering 6,000W, 120V/240V split-phase output, suitable for power-hungry appliances. Let’s explore more practical tips to handle your food safely when the power goes out.

1. Prepare with Dry Ice or Ice Blocks

If you know a power outage is likely, purchase dry ice or ice blocks in advance. Place them in your refrigerator and freezer to maintain a low temperature. Dry ice can keep your refrigerator cold for a longer period than regular ice. Typically, 25 pounds of dry ice can keep a 10 cubic foot refrigerator below freezing for 3-4 days. Ice blocks, while not as long-lasting as dry ice, can still be very effective, especially if you have multiple blocks ready to replace those that melt.

2. Minimize Opening the Fridge

Once the power goes out, try to keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. Every time you open the door, cold air escapes, causing the internal temperature to rise. By minimizing the number of times you open the fridge, you can extend the time your food remains at a safe temperature. And a full refrigerator will maintain its temperature longer than a half-empty one because the cold items help to retain the cold. If your fridge is not full, consider filling the empty spaces with containers of water. This will help to maintain a lower temperature for a longer period during a power outage.

3. Use a Cooler for Perishables

If the power outage extends beyond four hours, consider transferring your perishable items to a cooler with ice packs. Ensure the cooler’s temperature stays below 4°C (40°F). This method can effectively preserve dairy, meat, and other perishable foods. Regularly add ice to the cooler to maintain a low temperature. Portable coolers are a practical solution for extended outages. They are relatively inexpensive and can be stored easily when not in use. When using a cooler, place the most perishable items directly on the ice and use additional ice packs to fill any gaps. Check the temperature inside the cooler regularly and replenish the ice as needed.

4. Check Food Temperature Before Consumption

After power is restored, use a food thermometer to check the temperature of your food. If the temperature is below 4°C (40°F), it is safe to keep. Any food items that have risen above this temperature should be discarded to avoid the risk of foodborne illnesses. It’s a simple step that can prevent health risks associated with spoiled food. Be particularly cautious with high-risk foods like meat, poultry, seafood, dairy products, and leftovers. Even if they look and smell fine, bacteria can grow to dangerous levels at temperatures above 4°C (40°F). When in doubt, it is better to err on the side of caution and discard any questionable items.

5. Use a Home Battery Backup

One of the most effective ways to keep your refrigerator running during a power outage is to use a home battery backup. The Anker Home Battery Backup is an excellent choice, providing enough power to maintain your fridge’s function. This ensures your food stays at a safe temperature, preventing spoilage. Also, they can maintain other critical systems in your home, such as medical devices or heating systems. Investing in a home battery backup is a proactive step to ensure you are prepared for any unexpected power interruptions.


Managing your refrigerator food during a power outage can be challenging, but with the right preparations and actions, you can keep your food safe and fresh. Investing in a home battery backup like the Anker Home Battery Backup can provide peace of mind and security. Additionally, having dry ice or ice blocks ready, minimizing the opening of the fridge, using a cooler for perishables, and checking food temperatures after power is restored are all crucial steps. These measures ensure that you and your family stay healthy and avoid food waste during an unexpected power loss.

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