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#297141 - 09/29/20 07:08 AM An example of failed prep
Bingley Offline

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1442
I use a food subscription service, and I collected enough of their ice packs to fill a large cooler. I was planning to use them to help keep the refrigerator cooler longer during blackouts and emergencies. When Hurricane Sally approached, I proudly opened the cooler to put the ice packs in the freezer.

I was greeted with a cooler of gooey gel spilling out from the ice packs. Six months in storage and the pressure from being stacked on top of one another broke most of the ice packs. The plastic is just not strong enough. The only usable ice pack was the one I left out because the cooler ran out of space. I definitely felt like a dummy!

So now I'm thinking of either finding robust commercial ice packs or putting the food subscription ice packs in airtight bags. You'd think it wouldn't be hard finding such bags, but the ones I could find seem to be too small. The ice packs are around 12" x 9" x 3".

Can you point to airtight bags that can be used to contain the ice packs? Or is there another way to seal the ice packs? Or, even better, do you have a different solution to the refrigeration problem (other than installing a big generator)?

#297143 - 09/29/20 12:59 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 7349
Loc: southern Cal
I fill Gatorade and energy drink bottles with water and freeze them, If thee poweer goes out, they will keep things cooler, along with not accessing the freezer contents needlessly. In addition, I eventually will have water to drink
Geezer in Chief

#297144 - 09/29/20 01:00 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
LesSnyder Offline

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 1638
Loc: New Port Richey, Fla
I use gallon jugs that previously held tea (not milk) and freeze them solid (provide air space so the water can expand without damaging the plastic)... they sit side by side well, and when melted you have water to drink...

for the 2004 hurricane season, I used 4 frozen jugs in a 5 day cooler (I should have pre chilled the cooler but didn't, but do now)... I did not open the cooler as I worked out of an older one, at 7 days I had access to ice at school... I checked on the cooler and the jugs still had some frozen ice... approximately 1/2 cubic foot of meat, originally frozen had thawed but was still usable, so it did add to the original thermal mass...

#297146 - 09/29/20 03:14 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
CJK Offline

Registered: 08/14/05
Posts: 586
Loc: FL, USA
I have frozen the gel in blocks (make a form or use smaller bread pans) and then when frozen, sealed in food saver bags. I double bagged them for puncture resistance.

#297147 - 09/29/20 04:19 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
roberttheiii Online   content

Registered: 02/13/09
Posts: 342
Loc: Connecticut, USA
I think keeping them frozen prior to the pending emergency is the key. They won't break under the own weight frozen, plus is an emergency happens unexpectedly (as has been known to happen from time to time...) they're ready to roll. You might keep one of each shelf of your freezer, freeze it very flat, then stack normal contents on top of it. You might also stockpile some in a chest freezer.

#297148 - 09/29/20 05:56 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
Jeanette_Isabelle Offline

Registered: 11/13/06
Posts: 2460
Loc: Somewhere in Florida
Years ago, our refrigerator had quit. Before we got the new unit, I successfully kept our food chilled by putting dry ice in the old fridge.

Jeanette Isabelle
“Trust me, this is not gonna end well!” — Pleakley, Lilo & Stitch

#297149 - 09/30/20 01:04 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
nursemike Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 870
Loc: wellington, fl
I have a chest freezer: I put a layer of 1/2 liter water bottles horizontally on the floor of the freezer. Negligible loss of storage space, no interference with the rotational arrangement of stored items, and easily dispensed.
Dance like you have never been hurt, work like no one is watching,love like you don't need the money.

#297213 - 10/07/20 09:56 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
LCranston Offline

Registered: 08/31/09
Posts: 199
Loc: Nebraska
Bingley, HATE fridge/freezer issues...sigh.

We have lost 2 freezers full of food in the last 12 years at this house.

1) 8 years ago. 7 year old went out to get a popsicle, did not close the ### door.

2) last year, wnt out to find the powert off- turned out the outlet we had it plugged in to was a GFCI, and there were 4 outlets on that run-- one of the OTHER outlets was tripped, and it killed the power.
-- we learned from the first, and had 5 2 liter bottles full of ice-- so we were able to salvage some of the meat.

The NEXT freezer will be a chest style- they loose less heat, and are harder to leave open by accident.....

#297214 - 10/07/20 11:34 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
Eugene Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/26/02
Posts: 2847
We've lost food due to the door either coming open or being left open. I put a lock on it and hang the key above the freezer so we unlock and lock it each time.

#297219 - 10/08/20 12:43 PM Re: An example of failed prep [Re: Bingley]
chaosmagnet Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 3427
Loc: USA
Our year-old fridge starts to make a noise when the door is left open too long. With kids in the house, this seems like an excellent feature.


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