WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- Families were out this weekend on the hunt for ice to save what's in their fridge or freezer.
But, just how long can you keep that food before it starts to spoil? Well if you lost your power for more than two hours, you will need to spend some time cleaning out your refrigerator.
The rule of thumb about the freezer is if it's half full, your food will last for 24 hours. If it's completely packed, the food will last 48 hours. The key is to keep the freezer closed and not open it until your power comes back on.
Now the fridge is a different story. These are the things you can keep and the things you should toss out.
You can keep fruit juices, hard cheese, fruits, vegetables, butter, canned fruit and other condiments.
But you want to make sure that the temperature is at least 40 degrees fahrenheit inside. So, get yourself a refrigerator thermometer to be sure.
Now to the things you should toss. Milk, cottage cheese, or other soft cheeses, any kind of pasta or prepared salads, eggs, fish, meat, sour cream, refrigerated biscuits or cookie dough.
Keep Food Safe When The Power Goes Out
If you're experiencing rolling outages and you are concerned, take a regular styrofoam cooler and fill it with ice then pack some of those perishable items, like your meat and milk, inside.
Once your power is restored, make sure the temperature inside the refrigerator is safe.