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Do You Need a Standby/Emergency Generator?

September 20th, 2016 No comments

Silhouette of electric transformer substation.

No lights.  No water.  No heat.  No air conditioning.  No refrigeration.  No sump pump.  No security.  No ability to work from home.  Or even worse no computer, TV or video games.

When you lose power most of your home systems and appliances no longer work.  They all depend on electricity.  So when major thunder, snow and ice storms bring down power lines, or our aging power grid fails, we all hope our local electrical utility company can get power restored quickly.  But sometimes it can take days depending on the extent of the damage in a given area.

How Long Can You Live Without Power?
Deciding if you need a standby/emergency power generator depends primarily on how long you can live without power before your business or personal situations are impacted negatively.

Reasons you may not be able to go without power for an extended period of time, especially if it is during periods of bad/cold weather, are ….

  • Young children
  • Seniors with medical needs/equipment
  • Large quantities of perishable foods
  • Security systems
  • Life safety systems
  • Basement flooding
  • Home businesses

What is a Standby Generator?
A standby generator automatically operates within seconds of a utility outage.  An automatic transfer switch senses the loss of power and redirects the electrical load to the generator that kicks in and provides your home with electrical power.  Unlike portable generators, standby generators are installed permanently outside your home and will provide uninterrupted backup power for days.  Smaller, air-cooled essential-circuit units are slightly larger than portable generators and can energize just a few circuits at a time.  Larger, liquid-cooled whole-house systems will comfortably power all your home’s needs.

kohler-generatorsWith Generators, Size Makes a Difference
The size of generator you’ll need will depend on how many electrical items you need/want to run.  If you choose to run only essential circuits, a 7 KW to 12 KW unit can run up to 16 critical loads, although not all at once.  Mid-size units of 12 KW to 20 KW will allow you to operate more creature comforts like your TV, more lights, and at the high end of this range, even your AC.  A 20 KW to 48 KW high-capacity, liquid-cooled generator can provide electricity for an entire home.

Getting Set Up with a Generator
A standby generator will require professional installation.  Initially you’ll need to assess your load requirements and the logistics of installing a generator in your home.  Connecting a unit requires advanced electrical and plumbing skills, as well as knowledge of local ordinances and building codes. You’ll also need permits before you start and inspections when you’re done.

Standby Generators Add Value and Peace of Mind
Typically having a standby generator on your property will increase the value of your home.  Buyers like the idea of having back up power particularly in regions where power outages are common.  Having a back-up system in place also provides “peace of mind” for those with family members or personal property that may be affected by loss of power for an extended period of time.

juice2Free Site Evaluation
Have questions on whether or not you would benefit from having a standby generator?  Contact us today at Artisan Electric and let our licensed pros do a free site evaluation.

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