The power seems to go out periodically no matter what time of year it is. You might be one of the fortunate ones to live in the heart of town with the fewest outages. I’m not that lucky. It seems like every other month the power is out in my grid for about an hour, but sometimes it’s out for one to seven days because of a storm. And since it’s the season for snow storms, I am listing cool gadgets to buy for those without a generator. Some are practical, and others are for entertainment.
Rechargeable items are listed because either the Princeton Public Library or some of the churches downtown like the Princeton United Methodist or Trinity churches have power and offer charging stations, or you can buy item #12 to power them up while driving. These sources will help juice up devices and power packs for an evening of work or play. Finish cooking dinner before it gets too dark unless you have powerful lighting like item #1.
- 27 LED Superbright Worklight/Flashlight – This is really VERY bright. The magnet allows for attaching under an over-the-range microwave oven for cooking (if you have a gas range), or hooking onto anything for hands free light. The best part is it only uses 3 AAA batteries (no hard to find Cs).
- Energizer 7 LED Headlight – Wear this around your head for hands=free reading or working. The pivoting head allows you to target the light.
- Tablet – A laptop is great, but requires too much power to operate. Tablets can be charged faster, have practical and fun apps
- Smartphone – This is even more efficient since it charges in 1 – 1.5 hours, and keeps you up to date with news.
- FrogEye Power Play P80 – Charge phones, tablets and other small devices on this list. It has a 8,000 mAh lithium battery that can charge an iPad nearly full.
- Brookstone HDMI Pocket Projector – Stream video or play movies stored on your device. This will provide a couple of hours of entertainment.
- Jambox Wireless Speakers – Enhance the sound of your smartphone, tablet, or above projector with a Bluetooth speaker. The popular Jambox has the bass many like. The Braven speaker (pictured) has a built-in power bank and can be connected to other wireless speakers for a bigger sound.
- Seagate Wireless Plus – Store up to 1 TB of videos, music, photos, and files on this re-chargeable storage device. It has its own wi-fi network, so you can stream the same content wirelessly to up to eight devices or three different movies to three devices simultaneously. You can create a portable home theatre combined with the projector and speakers above. This will certainly entertain family and friends. Not too shabby during a power outage. I’m currently using the older Kingston Wi-Drive, which only offers 8-64 GB.
- Wired Phone – An old school technology that comes to the rescue in a time of need.
- Charcoal or Gas Grill – This will allow you to cook if you don’t have a gas stove.
- Eton Hand Crank Emergency Radio – Stay in the know, charge cellphone and tablets
- DC/AC Power Inverter – Plug it into your car, and you can charge your mobile devices while you drive.
- APC UPS Battery Back Up – This is great for when you’re working on your computer and the power goes out. You’ll have at least 5-15 minutes to save documents and shut down properly. It also has surge protection.
- Solar-Powered Backup Battery Charger – Power up small devices.
- ReadyBright Lighting System – Small light devices stay plugged in outlets to charge, and come on in an outage. They can be unplugged and used as flashights.
- Fashy Fleece Covered Hot Water Bottle – Not a gadget, but can keep you warm if you can boil water or get hot water still from your tap. Place it your bed to warm it up at night. Many come with fleece covers. The one pictured has a polar bear fleece cover, and is great to snuggle.