How to Decide if You Need an Emergency Generator for Your Home, and How to Pick the Right One
Rain. Wind. Snow. Heat.
Our aging power infrastructure can’t keep up with increasingly intense weather events. And yet we’re more reliant on power than ever. We need it to keep our food from spoiling, to maintain crucial medications, to stay connected to our colleagues and loved ones, and to have a comfortable living space.
As the gap widens between our demand for power and our ability to rely on it, the need for a backup plan becomes clearer. Below, we’ll talk about the benefits of getting a whole home generator, and how to pick the right one for your home.
What a Whole Home Generator Can Do for You
Until we experience a significant power outage, we tend to underestimate just how much we rely on the power grid. One phone call to the local utility and we have 24/7 refrigeration, lighting, cooking, and air conditioning… until we don’t.
Major storms, extreme heat, even simple service disruptions can cause power utilities to go down for days. During such a time, how will you keep food fresh, stay warm or cool, or keep up with work?
This is where a home generator becomes crucial.
Here are some of the benefits that a whole home generator can provide when the grid fails:
- Keep Food Safe
Food begins to spoil as soon as the temperature rises above 40 degrees. In a typical home freezer, that happens about 10 hours after a power failure. In a refrigerator it’s even quicker. The continuous power a home generator provides can spare you the waste of having to throw out spoiled food, and keeping you eating healthy during an outage.
- Preserve Medication and Medical Equipment
For many, food isn’t the primary concern in the fridge. Insulin, antibiotics, and other medications require refrigeration. Not only are these items often crucial for one’s health, they can be very expensive to replace if spoiled.
It used to be that a power outage might mean having to rough it for a little while without the TV or stereo, but these days we depend on our powered devices for work, staying connected to family and friends, and handling emergencies. A continuous power source means reliable access to the internet, as well as fully charged phones, computers, and tablets.
Especially during the kinds of extreme weather events that often cause power outages—heat waves, blizzards, hurricanes, etc.—it can be excruciating to be without heat or air conditioning for too long. Having a whole home generator means being able to ride out difficult times safely and comfortably.
Is A Whole Home Generator Worth the Investment?
To be sure, a quality generator is not cheap. The price of a generator ranges base upon various factors:
- The size of your home
- How much electrical draw you want to replace
- The current set up of the electrical wiring within your home
- The generator fuel
- How long you want the generator to run for
For some homeowners, the investment may not be worth it, but most will find that they have more to gain by assuring the continuity of their power supply than by risking a devastating outage. A significant power outage could mean being without fresh food, being disconnected from family and work, or being in discomfort for days or even weeks.
If you don’t have reliable alternative resources to meet these needs, an emergency generator for your home may be necessary.
If you’ve decided to get a home generator, the first thing you’ll need to determine is how much electrical capacity you’ll need from it. Do you simply need to maintain operation of basic appliances, such as a refrigerator or an air conditioner? Or do you also need to keep the lights on and maintain other customary functions? In either event, it’s important to take stock of how much power you typically use, so you can account for how much you need to replace.
Whole home generators are available in a range of sizes and capacities. A knowledgeable Cannondale professional can not only help you to select the generator that’s appropriate for you, but also help to install and maintain it.