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Freezer Prepping Tips

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Sentry18

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https://beansbulletsbandagesandyou.com/bullets/2020/02/14/freezer/

Freezer Prepping Tips
Posted on February 14, 2020 by Becca

I can’t say this was an accidental discovery, but let’s call it an accidental test of an idea…

I got some Hello Fresh meal boxes for a while last year when i was working more hours. They came with huge ice packs. I layered those ice packs in my deep freeze. My thought was, if the power goes out, either due to Stuff Hitting The Fan (SHTF) or just a regular power outage, the huge ice packs would help preserve the stuff in the freezer a while longer.

Didn’t figure I’d ever get the chance to actually find out.



Unintentional Freezer Prep Testing
Last week, I opened the freezer to get something and immediately knew something wasn’t right. This is the freezer that contains what’s left of the pronghorn hubs harvested last year on his first hunt. And probably easily several hundred dollars of other meat and foods. Stuff was cold, still partially frozen, actually. But it wasn’t as cold as expected.

I did an instant rewind in my mind and realized I’d been out there cutting boards for a closet remodel almost exactly a week prior, where I’d plugged the chop saw into the same power strip. At some point I’d heard something fall, looked around and couldn’t pinpoint it, thought I better check the power strip when I got done, and then promptly forgot.

Yep, I’d knocked the freezer plug out of the outlet and hadn’t even realized it. That would have been a horrible waste of food and money if I hadn’t had the ice packs in there and if I hadn’t opened the freezer when i had. A week later and the meat was still frozen. Thawing, but frozen. It blows my mind that it lasted that long!

Five Ice Pack Ideas
Now, i don’t expect y’all want to order Hello Fresh just to get the ice packs so here are some other ideas…

-You could freeze water in freezer ziplock bags.
-I make homemade yogurt, strain it and put the strained off whey in gallon freezer bags and freeze – it can be used to make bread or to add protein to other foods.
-you could make broth using chicken, turkey, beef bones, and put it in freezer bags.
– you can fill gallon ice cream buckets or other storage containers with water and freeze them.
– rinse out milk jugs and fill with water, leave some headroom for expansion, and freeze.
I went through and rearranged both freezers today and as I did, I started re-layering the ice packs among the food so that there would be a more even distribution of cold to help protect stuff. Thought it was a worthwhile tip to share!

Freezing Stuff Prepping For Isolation
And another #freezertip. With the corona virus stuff going on, I’ve been trying to keep us stocked up on everyday stuff that we would normally run to the store for.

I know I can make coffee with the long term storage coffee and some powdered milk but I’d rather not resort to that just yet so I’ve been getting extra kcups and bottles of coffee creamer and keeping about a month supply of everyday things like that on hand.

I hadn’t really ever thought about some of the things you can freeze but that we don’t normally think to…so I’d been researching various things to see what freezes well.

So far I’ve frozen:

  • Coffee creamer
  • Orange juice
  • Milk
  • Sour cream
  • Cheese of almost every variety (I knew you could freeze this but I’m freezing a lot more now.)
  • Sliced sandwich meat
And all thawed just fine with no taste or texture changes.

Half N Half is the only thing that I have found doesn’t freeze so well. It still comes out fine but doesn’t really reincorporate as well. Works fine for soups and stuff but not so well as a coffee creamer.
 

backlash

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My freezer was plugged into a GFCI outlet and when the thing popped my freezer shut down. I figured it out several days later and the smell was pretty bad.
I didn't realize the GFCI outlets were all daisy-chained so there was only 1 with a reset button and the other 5 outlets were just normal duplex outlets but they all were protected by the 1 GFCI. Cheap lazy builder, I guess.
 

backlash

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I believe that is legal to do.
I'm sure it was legal and passed inspection but the builder was not very good. I found several issues months after I bought the house and it took me a long time and a bunch of phone calls before he responded. Then about 2 years later he went bankrupt and closed his company then reopened under a different name so he was off the hook. Never trust a general contractor that drives a station wagon.
 

Sentry18

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When we were remodeling our kitchen one of the contractors unplugged one of our chest freezers, which had been moved into the garage, so he could use the outlet. He forgot to plug it back in. We found it a couple weeks later and threw away hundreds and hundreds of dollars of meat. Of course we spoke with the electricians, the plumbers, the tile people, the general contractor, etc. and none of them were responsible (yeah right) until I finally found the video footage. It was the son of the general contractor, the one being groomed to take over the business. We waited until the final invoice was in hand before we presented the evidence. We settled on $500 off the bill. We now have low-temp alarms in all of our freezers.
 

dademoss

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I believe that is legal to do.
Never seen a set of outlets that wasn't daisy chained. If the lead outlet is required to be a GFCI, or something further down the chain, then everything behind it is protected. Anything I added has been done that way, meets code, but I am not a professional. I have NEVER seen individual outlets home run to a breaker box except for 220, but like I said, I am not a professional, YMMV.
 

Amish Heart

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The electrician just fixed ours in our kitchen. One GFCI on the backsplash, controlled all outlets on the wall. I had no power in there. A water leak at the sink, and a fried electrical wall in the wall behind the sink. Electricity works now, moldy wood out, just need to pick up a new sink. And return the wrong sink. Not enough holes in the back. BUT it doesn't fit in the car and husband has the truck. I know what I'm doing this evening. But hey, the builder is laying countertop tile on part of the kitchen as we speak, so maybe I'll have an oven and stove top for the weekend.
I always keep frozen ice blocks handy for freezer and fridge. Saved our commercial fridge food at the school one weekend. Fridge went out Friday afternoon, they couldn't come out till Monday. I put in 4 iceblocks that I had and the food was fine.
 

backlash

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Never seen a set of outlets that wasn't daisy chained. If the lead outlet is required to be a GFCI, or something further down the chain, then everything behind it is protected. Anything I added has been done that way, meets code, but I am not a professional. I have NEVER seen individual outlets home run to a breaker box except for 220, but like I said, I am not a professional, YMMV.
Very few outlets are not wired in series unless it's a high current drawing device. The outlets in my shop are mostly dedicated single 120v circuits, my RV plug is a 30 amp dedicated line. Actually, if I had known how it was wired it would have been handy. When the nightlight in the bathroom quit working I would have known to check the GFCI. I plugged the night light into the other bathroom and it didn't work there either so I naturally figured the nightlight was dead. Wrong, all the outlets in the bathrooms, kitchen, garage and outside were on the same GFCI circuit.
Live and learn.
 

SheepDog

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Yep! when I wired my shop I put in 5 circuits for each of four outlets and the first outlet on each of the five circuits was a GFCI outlet. Then I put in the six dedicated outlets for the machine tools and three 240 outlets for the big stuff. The lighting circuits were split in two for each bank of 10 fixtures (under 7 amps per circuit) and a dedicated outlet on the ceiling for the door opener. I selected the wire size that was one gauge larger than code required and when the inspector was looking everything over he said that it was better than any professional job he had seen. The bigger wire causes less voltage drop which lowers the likelihood of fire and provides higher voltage at the termination point. My brother kept telling me to stop over-engineering... NOT going to happen, ever. :)
 

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