• Deal of the Week
    30,000 BTU Propane Ventfree Garage heater

    Special Offer – Backup / Emergency Heating

    by Jason Wiskerchen

    Saturday, February 4, 2012, 11:01 PM

We are pleased to announce that St. Paul Mercantile (SPM) is offering PeakProsperity.com members a special discount on select heating systems. Members get 10-20% off the retail price through the month of February. 

Specifically, St Paul Mercantile is offering us:

  • 10-20% off select heating systems (Mr. Heater, Procom, Kozy World – VentFree / Vented Heaters)

Click here to take advantage of this offer, exclusive to PeakProsperity.com readers.



We bring you this offer to provide the opportunity and incentive to evaluate your heating sources and ensure you have a reliable source of heating during a time of need. Whether it be a power outage during a winter storm or a failed component in your primary heating system, it is important to have a backup heating source established as part of your overall resilience building strategy. 

Here's the excerpt from our What Should I Do? guide that speaks to having a backup heating source.

Heating & Warmth

The extent to which not having access to a heat source presents a risk for you depends on your location and climate.  Power outages in areas with cold winters, where damage to power lines is common during ice storms and blizzards, mean that electrically-controlled furnaces will not operate.

Having a woodstove can be a good and relatively inexpensive backup heating (and cooking) option that also provides a pleasant supplementary heat source in cold winter months.  I strongly encourage everyone to own a woodstove, if that’s an option, at least if you are accustomed to heating your home for any part of the year.  But for many people, a woodstove installation is not feasible or would require extensive remodeling to make possible.  The propane heater below is an excellent alternative; it’s versatile and heats a sizable area.  Keep in mind that a degree of caution is needed when using any kind of space heater, especially varieties that use fuel.  Be sure to carefully follow the manufacturer's instructions.

If a power outage occurs in freezing temperatures, it can lead to frozen pipes.  Even if you do have a reasonable supplementary heat source for space heating, it’s important to remember to shut off the water valve at the water service entrance in your house and to turn on all the faucets in order to drain remaining water from them to prevent damage to the pipes.  One convenience of a winter power outage, as opposed to a summertime outage, is that refrigerated and sometimes frozen foods can be preserved outdoors if the temperature is cold enough.

Blankets, comforters, sweaters, hats, and sleeping bags are very useful items to stock up on when preparing for a potential winter outage.  It is helpful to learn how to maintain core body heat by utilizing layers and covering up areas where body warmth typically escapes (head, neck, hands, feet).  Insulating garments are also terrific money savers, as their use can help you inch your thermostat lower when fuel costs rise.

For more information on how to stay warm and survive a winter power outage, our excellent copyeditor, Amanda, wrote this account of an outage she experienced and provided lots of recommendations that can be useful even on a shoestring budget.  Our forums are filled with similarly informative discussions.

For heating and warmth, we recommend:

• Heats up to 1,000 square feet (at least several rooms in most houses with the 30,000 BTU model)
• Free-standing or wall-mounted
• Connects to a standard 20lb propane cylinder (comes with hose + regulator for doing so) or connect to a natural gas source, depending on model
• Safety features for indoor use including automatic shut-off


• Natural, breathable fibers that wick moisture away from your skin
• Softer and more shrink-resistant than most brands of woolens



• Lightweight compared to heavy blankets
• Excellent at trapping body heat
• Look for styles with more baffles (areas that are stitched closed), not fewer


  • Woolen blankets from local wool farmers

• Wool farmers' associations in several states now offer blankets that officially use wool from local growers.  These blankets are beautiful, natural, and help support sheep farming in your local area. We know of blankets in Connecticut, Michigan, Vermont, and Rhode Island.  They may also be available in other areas; if you find them, let us know.

We hope you continue to find these offers on essential resiliency items a welcome addition to the news and other articles on the site. We look forward to providing updates to the WSID Guide and Series in the coming year.  


Full disclosure: Based on our existing relationship with St. Paul Mercantile, PeakProsperity.com will receive a small commission if you purchase through this special offer. This will not impact the price you pay (in fact,as the offer states, you're getting an exclusive price discount not available to the public-at-large). The proceeds we received will be immediately invested to fund new features and functionality for this site.

We’d also love to hear any feedback based on your first-hand experience with the products and vendors that we recommend through these special offers (and elsewhere on this site). Our goal is to ensure that we’re doing our utmost to offer the best guidance for utility, value, and service.

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