When a bad storm hits and knocks out power, keeping your lines of communication open can be a big challenge. Consumer Reports says there are several key moves that can help. "Consider getting a prepaid phone on a network that's different from your main phone. Having access to two networks increases your chances of getting a signal." If calls aren't getting through, try texting. Texts can often get through when calls can't because the data demands are smaller. Mike Gikas "And for those who don't yet text, it's time to learn. If you have older family members, get them started! It's really important." You also don't want your phone to go dead. So consider getting an extra battery that you can switch out when one dies. With phones that you can't swap out the battery, including the iPhone, consider getting a charging case, or "juice pack," that extends the life of the battery. Mike Gikas "And it's really important to conserve your phone's power. People don't realize that running apps can really drain a phone. On an iPhone, you double press the home button and you'll see the running apps. Then leave your finger on one of them until you see them quiver and delete them by hitting the minus sign in the upper left hand corner of the app. On most Android phones, to see the apps that are running, hit the recent apps button and it will show you all the apps, and you merely swipe them to the left and that should shut them down." Also, lower the brightness of the screen and turn off Wi-Fi connections until you need them. These keys moves before and during a storm can go a long way to keeping you connected. ."
More On Your Side Stories
- Consumer Reports just put two dozen of the most popular brands and styles through rigorous wind, rain, and climate tests to find the best for your house.
- Walmart is known for value, some strategies to try when shopping the discount chain.
- Sales of portable generators spike every time the power gets knocked out, a good one can keep the basics running.
- Instead of Apple TV, Roku, or another set-top box for streaming video to your TV, consider a Blu-ray player.
- Consumer Reports tests car seats for kids to find the safest ones.
- Full-Sized pickups are notorious gas guzzlers but Consumer Reports has found some real winners.
- As college students head off to school, they have to figure out how to set up their banking and receive their financial aid.
- Most eat it for breakfast, but 11 percent have cereal for dinner according to the market research company Mintel.
- Seventy-nine percent of cell-phone users keep their phones with them for all but two of their waking hours.
- There's a serious health concern about eating some kinds of fish, because many popular varieties contain high levels of mercury.