Sometimes when hurricanes, or other natural disasters, are looming, people tend to focus on bunkering down, thinking about evacuation needs, and stocking up on food and water. Still, there’s a small trick that can help households save money during this awful time, and it is quick, easy, simply, and takes no time at all.
According to Business Insider by filling up a cup with water, freeze said cup, then sticking a quarter to the top will help homes know if food in their refrigerator is still okay after returning from evacuation measures. It can save money and prevent people from getting sick in the aftermath of the storm. When families return, if the quarter is still at the top of the cup, the food you have is still okay to eat.
So, if you are on the cusp of a hurricane storm, simple fill a cup up with water (any size is fine), freeze, place a quarter on the top after frozen, and then put the cup back in the freezer. Upon return:
Quarter Is At The Top: If the quarter is at the top of the ice cup, this means that the electricity during the storm did not go out for a long enough time to spoil food. Eat away, and no food has to go to waste.
Quarter At The Bottom: If you check your frozen cup of water and the quarter is at the bottom, this means that your fridge was left without power for a good chunk of time. Throw out food and try not to look at the money being wasted; after all, at least you won’t get sick on it!
Quarter In The Middle: This is a 50/50 chance you are taking. If the quarter is in the middle, this means power was out for some time, but not enough for the entire ice cup to turn to water. The freshness within your refrigerator is iffy at this point. Proceed with caution when it comes to your leftover food items.
According to the FDA, your freezer’s temperature should be under zero degrees Fahrenheit, and the temperature within a fridge should not go over 40 degrees Fahrenheit. The organization also recommends placing frozen water containers within your fridge before evaluation to help keep your food cooler for longer, so if the power does go out, there’s a bit of a backup. Lastly, place any food items that can be frozen within your freezer to help keep them fresh.
Additionally, food that is in the fridge can be safe for up to four hours during a power outage, as long as the door is kept shut.