With Fort McMurray residents on their way back to homes that haven't had power for an entire month now, it's inevitable that they will be returning to a fridge full of rotten food. It doesn't take a month to ruin your food AND your fridge though. Here's what you should do if you have been without power to your fridge or freezer for any extended period of time.
How Long is Too Long
If your fridge or freezer has been off for 48 hours or more, your food has spoiled and should be considered as no longer safe for consumption. Even if some food should not have spoiled, it is possible that it has been contaminated by other food in your fridge. At the very least, you will have to replace all of the contents of your fridge and give it a thorough cleaning.
If you're confident that your fridge or freezer has been without power for an extended period of time or if you notice a strong odour or liquids that have compromised the appliance you will need to replace the entire unit.
How to Proceed with a Claim
A refridgerator that has been without power for an extended period of time should not be opened. Opening it now could cause bad odours or leaks that could damage your home.
- Do not open your fridge/freezer
- Use strong tape to seal the appliance shut with the contents still inside.
- Take photos of the front of the appliance including the brand name and a photo of the model / sku number on the back.
- Take measurements and not the brand and style.
- Follow instructions provided by your local authority to about safe disposal. If you can't move these items, let your broker or insurance adjuster know and they can arrange for removal.
If you're certain that your appliance has not been damaged and you'd like to just clean it out and replace the contents, make sure that you take photos of the contents before you remove them. You can contact your broker and discuss options for replacement.
Keep in mind that these replacement costs will be subject the availability of coverage and deductable that you have on your home insurance policy. If you're unsure about your current home insurance coverage, it is best to consult with your insurance broker before taking action.
If you're interested in Armour Insurance being your broker, please give us a call at anytime and we can discuss the benifits of being protected by Armour.