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If you are in the throes of deciding how to best prepare your home for future power outages with a backup generator, you’ve got multiple options: should you go with a whole house generator installation near you, a standby generator, or even a portable generator?
As the trusted backup generator experts in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia and Northeast North Carolina, here is what you need to know about backup generators, and how to make the right choice for your home.
As previously mentioned, there are three kinds of generators that can be used to provide your home with power in an emergency. However, if you are looking for a backup generator solution you can trust to keep your lights on when the power unexpectedly goes out, we strongly recommend you leave a portable generator off of the shortlist. Instead, let’s look at the differences between more optimal residential solutions.
A standby generator is installed outside the home and connected to your electrical system and to a fuel line (generators can run on natural gas or propane). When an outage is detected, a standby generator turns on immediately to provide power to your essential items like appliances and devices.
A standby generator is usually rated to provide between 9 and 20 kW of electricity.
A whole house generator operates exactly like a standby generator: installed outside, and connected to the home’s electrical system as well as a fuel line. What makes a whole house generator different is the size, as it is tasked with providing all the electricity your home might need during an outage.
A whole house generator is rated to provide 22 to 40 kW of electricity.
Installing an in-ground backup generator like the ones we’ve discussed is not a one-size-fits-all scenario. If you choose a generator that is too small, your home may be seriously underpowered during an outage. If you choose a generator that is too large, you will no doubt waste money as well as fossil fuel emissions on energy you don’t need.
The first step in choosing the right backup power option for your needs is to understand the energy usage in your home. This is where having an expert by your side becomes essential. From there, you also need to determine which appliances you are going to want to continue using even when the power goes out from a storm, a flood, a power line accident, or another unpredictable event. Answering these questions will give us a good idea of where to start:
Can you do without running your laundry appliances for a few days?
Will you need to use the oven to cook during an outage?
What appliances can you get along without for just a few days? The less you will need to use during an outage, the smaller the backup generator you will need.
In our experience with sizing, installation, and Generac gas generator maintenance, true peace of mind comes with knowing that you will not have to rely solely on candles and propane heaters during an outage. Learn how to keep your lights on, cook the food you need, or even maintain power to medically necessary devices when you partner with the whole house generator installer in your area, at Russell’s.