Predicting Power Outages Using a "Squirrel" Method?

electrical line truss in evening

Squirrels: those cute, little furry critters! Some say they're adorable, but they can wreak havoc on power grids by damaging and chewing through electrical wires. These creatures, along with many other potential causes of power outages, were the points of focus in a three-year study done at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Researchers designed an algorithm to predict causes of major long-term blackouts and possible catastrophic shutdowns of utility companies. The name of this study? "Squirrel"!

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Protect Different Types of Building Insulation

wall insulation around window frame

Insulation is used in building homes and commercial spaces to maintain comfort and protect building material integrity. They are key to building structures, but they are susceptible to damage, like from critters and rodents. Insulation is found in the ceiling of your attic, the attic floor, and in the walls of the structure. Additionally, insulation may be used on fixtures, like extra pipe wrap insulation may be used around water pipes and heating ducts. Insulation must resist heat flow, which is measured with an R-value. The higher the R-value, the higher the resistance, making a more effective insulation.

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Dangers of Power Lines

lightning across dark blue sky above home, tree, fence, and power lines

While many power lines now sit below ground, those above still pose significant risks. Not only are power lines susceptible to critters, like squirrels, causing outages that leave you powerless, but they are also dangerous. While Critter Guard systems can prevent power outages that impact your home or business, awareness and caution will help you avoid the dangers of power lines.

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Adopting a Smart Grid

cityscape at night with network node connection graphics in sky

The demand for clean energy is increasing every day as the appetite for electricity from various households and establishments swells. Replacing the conventional electrical grid with a smart grid is critical towards the long-term provision of clean energy, for the latter allows automatic devices, consumers, and operators to monitor consumption in real-time and better understand their need for energy.

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Fiber Optics: Technology Worth Protecting

lit up fiber strands of fiber optic cable

Fiber optics is one of the newer technologies in Internet and communication services. The installation and use of fiber for a homeowner's Internet service have been touted and the source of envy for those that don't yet have the option. They're an investment that should be protected, but what is the fuss about?

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The Fascinating Science Behind What Makes Power Lines Buzz

utility poles with electrical lines along tree line at sunset

Have you ever walked out to check the mail or to a neighbor's house and heard an odd little buzzing noise when you approached a power line or transformer? Did it make you worry that something may be wrong, or were you just a little confused about why it was making noise? The truth is: it is a very commonly heard noise that is always there. This steady droning or vibration is called "mains hum," and often, it draws attention of small animals, who may creep up and investigate if you do not protect your lines. The science behind what makes power lines buzz is quite interesting to humans too!

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Nutty Squirrels and Rodents Threatening Your Power Supply

squirrel on metal bar railing with autumn leaves on ground
Rodents on the Grid

In the heart of the city, on your hike in the woods, or in your very own backyard, squirrels are seemingly ubiquitous. These small critters are well-adapted to numerous locales across the country and the world. Did you know they are also the cause of a whopping 10-20% of power outages annually? Critter Guard offers humane protection from these 100% preventable events.

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Home Insurance Coverage for Pest Damage

set of keys with house keychain on wooden table

When looking at home insurance options, most homeowners want to know that they cover the basics. They want policies to cover them in the event of a fire, a flood, vandalism or burglary, high wind damages, and more. You can usually find an insurance company and customize a policy that covers those things. However, there is one disaster that almost no home insurance policy will cover, and it is also one of the most common things to cause damage that home and business owners often neglect to consider. You should search for coverage for pest damage, though many insurance companies don't cover it. Instead, look to preventative measures with Critter Guard's Line Guard and Pole Guard systems.

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3 Power Outage Recovery Tips to Safely Get Your Power Back

close-up of circuit breaker switches

We've all had one of those days: you're at home, relaxing, when something with your power goes wrong. Maybe you were reading a book on the couch, or in the kitchen prepping for the big game, but as soon as the lights go off, you feel your whole day is in peril. It could have been caused by a curious squirrel, who damaged, tripped up, and interrupted your power supply. What do you do? You grab your flashlight and go to flip your circuit breaker. But before you do that, there are a few other things you should consider for your safety and to protect your electronic devices and appliances.

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How Utility Poles are Replaced

silhouette of utility pole and trees at sunset

When utility poles get old or damaged, they need to be replaced to ensure that you have continual access to electricity, Internet, and phone. Have you ever wondered how the power companies replace the poles, but still manage how to keep your electricity on?

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Making and Installing Utility Poles

woman standing in and looking down road lined with utility poles at sunrise

We often walk down sidewalks and drive down streets without giving utility poles much attention. They are part of our everyday lives, but rarely do we actively interact with them. Utility poles hold important electrical equipment, and it's critical to protect them from meddling squirrels and rodents who might do some damage. Poles are created carefully and installed with precision to hold the critical electrical components. It's a detailed process that could get costly if incessant critter damage occurs.

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How to Keep Your Food Safe During a Power Outage

how to keep your food safe during a power outage

Power outages regularly disrupt the daily lives of people across the world. It can be even more frustrating when these outages were preventable just by protecting utility lines and poles from rodent damage. While many power failures can be solved in a matter of hours, more severe issues have the potential to cause major damage to the way areas of society function. This can be seen most evidently in what it does to the food supply.

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Phone Apps to the Rescue During Power Outages!

close-up of woman wearing a watch and typing with thumbs on a smartphone

Smartphones are more powerful than ever, and they can be used in many situations, even when power fails due to critter-damaged electrical lines and equipment. Why not use your phone to ensure your safety during an outage? Here are a few kinds of apps to help you and your family manage in the dark.

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Back Up Your Home with an Uninterrupted Power Supply

uninterruptible power supply with electric plugs on wooden floor

Rural areas throughout the United States frequently encounter electrical difficulties.  Often, utility companies find animal-damaged lines costing billions of dollars in repairs.  You can help your electrical provider prevent outages simply and humanely with innovative solutions from Critter Guard.  However, if you're considering other alternatives for when the inevitable outage occurs, an uninterrupted power supply might be the solution!

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Dictating Factors of Costs of Power Outages

power outage in city at dawn with sun peeking between buildings

Power interruptions have cost implications to both consumers and power utility companies. Hence, companies in the energy industry need to establish and know the actual cost of power outages, for blackouts affect their operations and reputation as well. Additionally, companies should know how to protect themselves from equipment damage with Critter Guard systems to keep up operations. Power outages are a nuisance and affect many parties. Here are the factors to consider to truly understand the impacts of power failures.

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6 Tips to Extend Your Phone's Battery Life in an Emergency Situation

locked cell phone in foreground in airplane mode with blurry background

Being prepared for emergency situations is something commonly overlooked by business and home owners. Making sure your power lines and substations are initially protected from power outages with Critter Guard's Line Guard and Pole Guard systems can prevent rodent damage to equipment and keep your business and family safer, avoiding blackouts.

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Protect Against Power Surges in Blackouts

surge protector on table with 5 devices plugged into sockets

It's usually a relief when power returns after a blackout, but for some people, the moment the power comes back on can also a moment they'll never forget. When current is restored, it can surge through the line and short out appliances and equipment that are still plugged in. You can protect your electrical devices with a surge protector in these situations. In addition, you can reduce the chances of power outages and damage to electrical lines from meddling rodents to prevent outages initially.

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Hazardous Signs Your Generator Needs Repair

yellow portable electricity generator on ground

Homeowners install home generators for a variety of reasons. Often, they want protection for critical appliances to continue running when their power goes out, like during a storm or when squirrels and critters have damaged electrical equipment. For example, a generator ensures sump pumps work, avoiding flood damage. Moreover, just keeping the lights on will keep everyone calm and provide peace of mind. However, all this requires your generator to be in working order at all times, so it's ready when you least expect and need it, in case an unprotected electrical wire goes down. You need to routinely check and maintain your generator, in case it needs repair.

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Blackouts Can Affect Your Water Supply Too

water pouring into glass cup on wet countertop in blue light
When the Power Fails

Blackouts are an unpredictable and unfortunate event in modern existence. Whether it lasts for three minutes or three days, a power outage is a great inconvenience at the very least, if not a major ordeal. Many failures are completely preventable though. That's why Critter Guard is committed to stopping these events before they even occur by preventing the surprisingly-more-frequent failures due to squirrels, rodents, and other critters from damaging electric lines and utility poles.

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Standing Up to the Elements

one wooden utility pole overlooking city lights at night with incoming storms and lightning

Whether you notice them or not, utility poles are an omnipresent feature in the backdrop of our modern world. Though some say they can be an eyesore on the landscape, it's hard to deny that they play an extremely valuable role in the fabric of our lives. When the power goes down, it becomes crystal clear just how important utility poles really are.

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