Temperatures are rising and summer is right around the corner. But just because those cold winter months are behind us doesn’t mean you should forgo a backup plan for your home’s electrical system. Having a backup generator can be an essential part of any home especially during the rising heat of the summer months. The last thing you want is to have your AC go out in the middle of a heat wave. In order to help get you thinking about whether or not a backup generator is right for you, here’s a quick guide on everything you need to know about summer generators.
Why a Backup Generator During the Summer?
Most people associate power outages with winter storms and heavy snowfall. In actuality, power outages are just as likely to occur during these months and can be equally as hazardous. With rising temperatures comes things like hurricanes, tropical storms, and turbulent winds, often occurring as early as May. These weather conditions come with heavy rain and harsh winds that can be just as damaging to your home as any winter storm, especially for those who live in coastal states. I’m sure we’ve all experienced our fair share of heavy storms throwing debris around and causing you to be without power for days and sometimes even weeks.
Having a whole house backup generator can eliminate any need for concern during these times. A whole house generator supplies enough power to keep all your essential needs running during the summer months and supplies much more power than a typical portable generator. They are large enough to power most daily essentials including lights, fridge, water, electricity, and most importantly, AC. Many generators even have the capability of automatically powering on once the electricity goes out in your home, removing the need for you to go out in the middle of a storm.
Benefits of Home Standby Generators
Unlike most portable generators, home standby generators are powerful enough to supply electricity to most household essentials. They also start automatically when the power goes out. To give you a rough idea, most portable generators supply anywhere from 3,000 to 8,500 watts of electricity, while home standby generators typically supply 5,000 to 20,000 watts. To give you a better idea, here’s a rough list of the typical power usage for many of the appliances you’ll find in your home.
Refrigerator: 600 watts
Sump pump: 750 to 1,500 watts
Portable heater: 1,500 watts
Window air conditioner: 1,000 watts
Lights: 5 to 80 watts (per bulb)
Computer: 60 to 300 watts
Home security system: 100 watts
Has or propane furnace: 800 watts
8-inch burner on an electric range: 2,000 watts
Dishwasher: 1,500 watts
Generator Care Tips
If you already have a generator, now’s the time to make sure everything is running smoothly to make sure there’s no hiccups when you really need it. Without proper care, there’s a chance your generator might not be working correctly when you need it most. Be sure to keep up with regular routine maintenance and to call a licensed professional should any problems arise. Be sure to test your generator monthly and before the start of every season to ensure things are running smoothly. Make sure your generator has enough fuel before an incoming storms. If your generator runs on natural gas then you likely won’t have to worry about this, however, if you have a propane generator then you’re going to want to make sure your tanks are filled before the storm starts. Lastly, make sure to have routine maintenance performed on your generator at least once a year. Schedule an appointment with a licensed professional to make sure things are good to go before the next big summer storm rolls around.
Hopefully this guide gives you a better idea of why home standby generators are important and whether or not you should have one installed in your home. If you’re still not sure, you can contact one of the licensed professionals at M.J. Rooney Electrical and they’ll be happy to help you with any questions you may have as well as give you an estimate for having one of these units installed into your home this season.