Safety Tips

Enjoy Your Summer With These Heat Safety Tips

Summer is here! While this means beach trips, pool days and other outdoor adventures, it can also mean extreme heat. Aside from being uncomfortable, extreme heat can be dangerous. Here are our top tips for staying safe in the face of extreme heat, and what to look for when it comes to heat-related illness.

Hot Weather Safety Tips

Stay cool and comfortable this summer with these heat safety tips:

 

Stay Hydrated

When you are outside in the heat, or if your home becomes hot, aim for one 8oz glass of water every 20 minutes. If you are outside in the heat, switch to sports drinks to replenish electrolytes lost through sweat. Small amounts of liquids at more frequent intervals are more effective than large amounts of liquids at infrequent intervals. Avoid dehydrating drinks like coffee (or other caffeine-heavy drinks) and alcohol.

 

Keep Your Home Cool - Efficiently

Save up to 10% a year on your energy bills by turning your thermostat back 7-10 degrees from its normal setting for 8 hours a day, ideally when you’re away. In addition, keep your blinds and curtains closed during the day to reduce the amount of sunlight and heat that enters your home. Window tint or reflective film are easy to install and are effective at reflecting the sun’s rays and heat away.

Note: Do not use electric fans if room temperature gets over 90°F. This will simply circulate hot air, making you more susceptible to heat illness.

 

Enjoy The Great Indoors

This is one of the most basic, but most effective hot weather safety tips. If possible, stay inside during the hottest part of the day, which is typically between 10AM - 4PM. If going outside is unavoidable, remember to use sunscreen, wear a hat and loose clothing, and stay in the shade as much as possible. Frequent breaks from work or exercising outdoors are also important to avoid overheating.

 

Cook With Smaller Kitchen Appliances

Avoid high kitchen temperatures (and energy bills) by limiting your oven or range use and switching to small appliances like microwaves and slow cookers. You can also experiment with refreshing no-cook dishes, like yogurt parfaits for breakfast and gazpacho (a chilled soup) for lunch or dinner!

 

Maintain Your Refrigerator

Regularly check your fridge and freezer thermostats, door seals and vacuum coils to keep your fridge in top condition and prevent any unexpected meltdowns. This will help you save on your energy bill while ensuring your food is always its freshest.

 

Check on Your Neighbors

If you have elderly, disabled, or sick neighbors, check on them regularly. They may need extra help staying safe and comfortable during periods of extreme heat. If you need help, arrange for neighbors, family, or friends to check in with you regularly.

 

Keep Your Furry Friends Safe

Heat safety doesn’t end with humans. Remember that if it’s too hot for you, it’s also too hot for your pets. Of course, your dog still has to go outside, though. Time your walks during the cooler parts of the day, like early in the morning and evening. You may also need to change your walk to a more shady route, or one where your dog can walk on grass or dirt paths to avoid hot concrete or asphalt. For long walks, take a collapsible water bowl for your furry friend, and take breaks as needed. Never leave a pet in a hot car.

Signs of Heat-Related Illness

It’s important to know the signs of heat-related illness, as it typically comes on quickly. If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, call 911 immediately:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Painful cramps, especially after working or exercising
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • A fast, weak pulse
  • Hot, dry skin
  • Headaches
  • Mental confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle twitches or spasms
  • High body temperature
  • Fainting

KOHLER Generators is Here For You

Power outages, even those brought on by extreme heat, are no match for a KOHLER generator. When the power goes out, your standby generator automatically turns on and restores electricity

July 26, 2022 7:46 PM

Prepare for Hurricane Season

Make hurricane preparedness a priority with National Hurricane Preparedness Week. The Atlantic hurricane season runs June 1 - November 30, making early May the perfect time to develop your hurricane plan and prepare your home and family. As emergency preparedness advocates, KOHLER® Generators is here to help you prepare for a safe storm season.

How to Prepare for Hurricane Season

Creating and carrying out your hurricane preparedness plan doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some tips to help you create a plan that works for your household.

1. Determine Your Risk

The first step in preparing for any storm is determining how at-risk you are. This will likely change based on each storm’s path, but hurricanes and their aftermath are unpredictable, so it always pays to be prepared. Based on your home’s location, determine how likely you are to experience weather events like:

  • Strong winds
  • Flooding & rainfall
  • Storm surge
  • Rip currents
  • Tornadoes

Knowing your greatest risks will help you better understand what your hurricane prep plan should include.

2. Develop an Evacuation Plan

Even if you don’t anticipate needing to evacuate, it’s a good idea to have a plan in place. For those that live in an evacuation zone, making a plan is imperative. Here are some tips to ensure evacuation plans run smoothly and safely:

  • Have a go bag with supplies, including important documents, cash, and food
  • Plan more than one route as traffic may make it difficult to take the most common route
  • Make sure your pets are included in your plans
  • You can stay up to date and find evacuation routes, shelters and more with the Red Cross Hurricane app, available on Apple and Android devices

Remember that evacuating doesn’t always mean getting completely out of the storm’s path, as that can sometimes mean traveling hundreds of miles. If you live in a flood prone area, evacuating to a friend or relative’s home that is not prone to flooding may be sufficient. Write your plan down, make sure all members of your household understand it, and share it with loved ones so they know where you’ll be and how to get in touch with you.

3. Assemble Disaster Supplies

Having a well-stocked emergency pantry and emergency preparedness kit are two of the most important things you can do to prepare for any inclement weather. Hurricanes often bring power outages and the inability to get supplies like groceries or medications. Your emergency pantry should have three days worth of non-perishable foods and three days of water per person in your household. Be sure to stock up on medications, first aid kit supplies, pet food and any other things your household needs in order to function for at least three days without power.

4. Check In on Your Insurance

It’s no secret that hurricanes can cause serious damage. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance is up to date before hurricane season arrives. It’s a good idea to review your policy each year, especially if you have completed any home improvement projects that have added value to your home. A quick call to your insurance provider to ensure you’re properly covered can potentially save you thousands in the event that your home is damaged in the storm.

5. Prepare Your Home

Preparing your property for hurricane season may seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Trimming any trees that are close to your home, bringing any loose lawn furniture or decorations inside and moving your car to a safe location are three of the most effective ways to make your property safer. We also recommend keeping plywood, steel or aluminum panels on hand to board your windows and doors ahead of a storm. For areas that frequently experience hurricanes or severe storms, hurricane shutters and/or impact resistant windows is a smart investment.

6. Help Your Neighbor

When a storm strikes, it’s important to stick together. Lend a hand in helping your neighbors prepare, check in with them during or after a storm and help each other clean up after the storm. You can even share your evacuation plans and contact information to better communicate with neighbors during and after a storm.

Be Ready With KOHLER Generators

A KOHLER standby generator is the gold standard in power outage preparedness. Explore our generators and find your nearest authorized KOHLER dealer to take the first step toward backup power. Recommendations from NOAA and Red Cross.

April 26, 2022 6:58 PM

Protecting Your Home Office from a Power Outage

With the pandemic driving more people to work from home (as studies show 4.7 million people are now doing), home power outages have become a real problem for productivity. Beyond that, they've actually proven to be quite costly, too, as outages can lead to lost data, damaged equipment, and more. Read on for tips and tricks on how to protect your home office in case of a power outage.

How to Prepare for a Power Outage While Working from Home

1. Back up Your Data Regularly.

When your power fails, your files can be lost or corrupted by the sudden outage. Prevent the loss of any critical information by backing up your data regularly. 

There are a few different ways to do this. External drives, NAS (network-attached storage) devices, or the Cloud are all ways you can store your information to be accessed in the event of a power failure or system crash. Because there are several options, it’s not a bad idea to have multiple backup methods for your information. You’ll also want to keep at least one copy of your information either off-site or online. That way you’re covered if your home office is ever damaged to the point where a backup kept on-site would be compromised.

As far as back up frequency, you have to decide how much information you can afford to lose in the event of a crash. Some people will opt to back up in real-time, some opt for daily or weekly backups, and some people stretch it to every month. It can be done at whatever frequency works for you!

2. Protect Your Electronics

Lighting, downed power lines, and distribution issues all cause power outages through transient voltage, which is bad news for any voltage-sensitive electronics. The last thing you want is for your equipment to get damaged by a surge that can fry your computer or other devices. Surge protectors will block the damaging voltage and protect your equipment in the event of an outage.

3. Invest in Backup Equipment

A power outage means no internet connection and no way to recharge your computer. This can absolutely cripple your productivity! Purchasing a backup battery for your computer or a Mi-Fi device that you can hookup for an internet connection will at least allow you to handle major tasks while you wait for your power to be restored.

4. Prepare a Storm Kit

In case of a major weather event, a power outage may be the least of your worries. Flooding or debris could be the more pressing issue at hand. If you’re focusing on protecting your home office technology, pack a disaster supply kit, including anything you’ll need to protect your office. This container could include important files, emergency contacts, company proprietary information, or equipment like hard drives and laptops.

Flashlights, batteries, and a first aid kit are good to start with. You'll also want large plastic bags and sealable boxes to keep important items dry. You can also keep a disposable camera to document damages for an insurance claim even if your mobile phone is dead. You’ll also want to have a power outage emergency response plan for what to do when the power goes out.

4. Have a Backup Power Plan

Many people do have access to a power outage generator backup power source. However, if an outage goes on for several days, a portable generator may not be able to handle the job. Portable generators are designed for temporary use in construction work, fieldwork, or recreation. A standby generator offers a more comprehensive and longer-lasting backup solution.

When considering which generator for a power outage will work for you, it’s important to answer the following question: “How much power does your business need?” It depends on your industry. If all you need is wi-fi and a laptop, you’ll need less power than someone running a catering business out of their home that requires power for ovens, refrigeration, and other kitchen supplies. But no matter what your needs, there are plenty of standby generator options that will provide the level of power that your business relies on.

Prepare for a Power Outage with The Right Equipment

Whether you’ve worked from home for years or you’re new to the remote-work environment, protecting your home office is a priority. Being prepared for a power outage will ensure that your productivity isn’t interrupted and that your equipment remains undamaged. Investing in the proper power outage equipment is an excellent way to give you peace of mind that if the power fails, you will be able to continue with business as usual. To find out more about how standby generators can keep your home office running in the event of a power outage, explore our home generator options here.

March 29, 2022 8:38 PM

How Much Does a Power Outage Cost You?

Getting caught in a power outage is never a fun experience, but even beyond the general inconvenience, a power outage can have other, more serious repercussions. When your home is deprived of electricity, there can be ripple effects that range from minor inconveniences to major repairs. Below, we’ve outlined a few of the most common costs that can be a direct result of a power outage.

1. Loss of Food

Assuming that a family of four has approximately enough food in their refrigerator to last them for 1 week, the average family spending a moderate amount on groceries will lose around $239 worth of food during an outage.

2. Cost of Ordering In

With the power out, it’s typically not possible to cook, particularly if you’re trying to save your food by not opening the refrigerator. For most Americans, that means ordering in. The cost of ordering takeout averages about $13 per person, plus a delivery fee and a tip. That means for one meal, the average cost will be around $60. When you’re talking about multiple days spent with the power out and multiple meals ordered in per day, that bill can add up quickly.

3. Cost of Accommodations

If a power outage goes on for more than a couple of days, some people may need to take refuge in a hotel room or other alternative accommodations for comfort. A hotel costs, on average, $186 per night as of 2020, and if the power outage goes on for multiple days, that’s another cost that can add up quickly.

4. Loss of Earnings

If the power is out at your place of work or at your home, you may be forced to forego your normal shifts or take a couple of days of unpaid leave because you won’t be able to work. Based on the 2020 median household income in the US, that averages out to $263 lost per day for the household. So, not only are there additional expenses associated with a power outage, but there is the capacity for a loss of income as well. 

5. Cost of Fixing Damage

Power outages can often cause damage to your home as a result of system failures. Some of the more common damage associated with power outages are the following:

While these types of costs are not necessarily going to be incurred every time the power goes out, when they do happen, they are unexpected and substantial. Risking damage to your home during a power outage is a stress you can do without, particularly when the entire experience of a power outage is so inconvenient.


Both your home and your family are affected when the power goes out in ways that can range from minor inconveniences to major damage. A standby generator can ease the uncertainty of an outage, as well as prevent damage from the power interruption. Depending on your home, you can choose a generator that will provide you with all the essential power you need to keep your family safe and comfortable during an outage. With the help of an authorized Kohler dealer, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that your home can sustain itself during an outage and that you’ll never incur the unexpected cost of a power loss again.

March 29, 2022 8:20 PM

3 Easy, Affordable and Smart Tips on How to Prepare for Extreme Weather

June is National Hurricane Preparedness Month and the start of the summer storm season. Severe summer weather can strike anytime, anywhere, so homeowners are urged to be prepared. Being proactive is key when faced with an emergency situation and having a plan can reduce the effects of the disaster.

 

Having access to things like clean food and water is a top priority during an emergency; however, power outages are becoming more frequent due to extreme weather conditions and an aging electrical grid. Some power outages can last for days or weeks, which can have a devastating impact on quality of life and can increase the amount of damage to your home. Insured losses due to natural disasters in the United States in 2014 totaled $15.3 billion according to the Insurance Information Institute. Weather related power outages cost 25 billion to 70 billion per year according to the US Department of Energy.
 

Here's how to make your home #HurricaneStrong in 3 easy steps:
 

  1. Create a family disaster plan so everyone knows what to do if severe weather hits. Details like how to evacuate your home; where to meet; and how to communicate are key.
  2. Prepare a home emergency kit. Your kit should include basics like bottled water, non-perishable foods, necessary medications, first aid supplies, a battery-operated radio with extra batteries, and flashlight.
  3. Install a backup generator to protect vital systems in your home. Some homes are being built "generator ready" and there are also new more compact-sized, affordable standby generators that are ideal for urban living or situations requiring less power. Which is right for you?
     

Share your preparedness tips, photos and videos with #HurricaneStrong on Facebook or Twitter to join the conversation.

March 9, 2022 8:57 PM