When the Lights Go Out: What to Do in a Domestic Power Cut

It's happened to everyone at some point or another: you're in the middle of a perfectly ordinary evening, when all of a sudden the lights go off and your TV stops working. Nobody wants a power cut in their home, but they do happen from time to time--so what should you do when it's your turn?

Find Out If It's Just You

The very first thing you should do is to go outside and have a quick look at the streetlights and your neighbour's windows. If they're all out too, it's probably a general issue that will be sorted in time without you needing to do anything. If they're all on, the issue is probably specific to your home--meaning that you'll need to deal with it yourself.

Make Sure You've Got Everything You Need

Gather together all the torches and other light sources you can find. This is a great excuse to break out the candles, but be careful: you should never leave a burning candle unattended, and you should be especially cautious if there are pets or children in your home. The last thing you need is to have to deal with two domestic disasters at once, after all!

Try To Track Down The Source Of The Problem

If you've looked outside and it's not just you, there are two obvious things to rule out next. The first is your circuit breaker; quite often it will turn out that one of your lightbulbs blew out and the whole wiring tripped to keep you safe. Make sure the switches on your circuit board are all switched on; if one isn't, flip it and see if that solves the problem. The second thing is to dig out your most recent utilities bills and make sure your payments are up to date--they won't cut the power without giving you warning, but it makes sense to check just in case you missed something.

Contact Someone Who Can Help

If neither of those things seem to be the source of the problem, use your mobile phone to choose and contact an emergency breakdown service who can send an electrician out to you to get things up and running again.

It's worth considering how you feel about doing this in the morning instead, though! If you've got everything you need and going to bed is an option, it may make sense to call out an electrician the next day--you won't need to pay an out of hours callout fee and their job will be made simpler by working in a place lit by natural light.