As every "doomsday prepper" knows, you need to have a fallout shelter, food and water, and a trusty generator on hand. As extreme as some people may be, being prepared for a natural disaster is really important and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Whether you find yourself in the middle of a snowstorm, or if the power is just out on your street, a whole house generator can really make things run smoothly. And can you really put a price tag on having peace of mind?
Do I Really Need a Whole House Generator?
According to the New England Journal of Medicine, there has been a worldwide increase in natural disasters since the 1970s. Regardless of why this is happening, natural disasters can happen anywhere, and that means it’s vital to be ready. Whole house generators can save the day in numerous situations when the power goes out. Power outages can occur for a variety of reasons, such as vehicle accidents or equipment malfunctions. The most common causes are due to extreme weather - hurricanes, tornadoes, freezing temperatures, high winds, lightning, flooding, and storm surges. Earthquakes, mudslides, and wildfires can also cause the power to go out.
Natural disasters do not discriminate, so wherever you live, you are at risk. Most people don’t want to spend money on a generator because they don’t see it as something that they need “right now”. Unfortunately, you won’t need a generator until disaster strikes, and then it will be too late. A whole house generator is definitely an investment, not just to your home, but also to your family. We don’t wear seatbelts because we are planning on getting into an accident - we wear them as a precaution. A whole house generator is similar. Don’t wait until it’s too late.
What Does a Whole House Generator Do?
Whole house generators do exactly that - they generate power for the whole house. When the power goes out, the generator automatically kicks in and things keep running smoothly. Did you know it only takes 4 hours without power for food to spoil in the refrigerator?
Not only will the generator keep the fridge functioning, it has capacity to keep everything else running too. Lights, air conditioning or heat, sump pumps and well pumps, appliances, and security systems. So while your neighbors are stumbling around looking for candles to light, you will barely even notice that the power is out. Other, smaller generators do not have the capacity to power the entire house, so you would have to choose the essentials. With a whole house generator, you don't have to choose. Smaller generators may keep things going for a short amount of time, but if power loss persists for days or even weeks, they would not be able to keep up.
How Do I Choose a Whole House Generator?
In order to choose the right whole house generator for you, the easiest thing is to call up your local electrician who does generator sales and service and have them walk you through the process. They can help you decide the load size you need.
Some questions to consider:
- What do I want to power during an outage?
- Do you want everything running or only the essentials?
- What do you consider "essential"?
Your electrician will be able to recommend what capacity you should get and which models are the most reliable
How Do I Install and Maintain a Whole House Generator?
After selecting your generator, schedule a time with you electrician to complete the installation. Self-installation can be extremely time consuming and sometimes dangerous. You could damage the generator or your home. Other concerns arise if the generator is not properly grounded. You’re spending money on something that will be used in emergencies, so you need to know that it will function safely and properly.
Just like anything with a motor, generators need to be maintained to ensure efficient functionality. Ask your electrician about their maintenance recommendations. The general rule of thumb is to have it serviced every two years, or every 200 hours of use. If a generator runs continuously for more than 12 hours, be sure to change the oil. Because the generator will work with your home’s electrical circuit, it is important to involve your local electrician. They will know how your home functions and how to incorporate the generator to work safely and efficiently.
You never know when you will need your generator, so don’t wait until it’s too late. Talk to Asbury Electric about installing a whole house generator today!