If you’re someone who likes to be prepared for the worst, then you’re aware of how useful a generator can be during harsh weather conditions or emergency scenarios.
It could be something as simple as a local power line going down, or a huge storm, but brownouts and blackouts occur quite frequently, which can be a huge disruption to everyday life and cost huge amounts of money in lost business as well as spoiled food and produce.
One of the best ways to avoid these difficulties is to invest in a generator, however, there are many kinds of generators and they each have their own pros and cons depending on how you intend to use them.
In this guide, we’re going to be looking at standby generators, which are a specific type of generator specially designed for powering your home and have an array of amazing features that make them much more suited to this purpose than conventional generators or even portable inverters.
What Is A Whole House Generator?
A whole house generator or standby generator is one of the best options for homeowners who want to maintain a stable and constant supply of electricity to their home even if the main power goes totally out.
They are a particularly popular choice in rural areas or places with unstable power grids and are highly practical.
Essentially, these are generators that are constantly ready and waiting to turn on automatically should there be a power outage in your area. They are highly convenient and don’t require any setup, and function automatically providing they are fuelled and maintained.
The Benefit Of Standby Generators
Standby generators come with many huge benefits, the main one being that they turn on automatically should the power in your area be disrupted.
The beauty of this is that if you’re out of town or not at home and the power goes out, your groceries, food, and other essentials will be kept running as long as the generator has fuel, which can buy you time to get home with additional supplies and fuel to ride out whatever issue is causing the power outage.
There are additional benefits too. Some people may rely on conventional generators or portable inverters to provide electricity to their essential appliances in a power outage, but these systems are more difficult to work with and require setting up each time there’s a power outage.
Quite often, these generators are difficult to set up in the dark of a power outage, and what’s worse, they require good ventilation and really need to be used outdoors or in an exposed garage, as the toxic fumes of the engine can build up indoors and be very dangerous.
Additionally, these generators won’t turn on automatically if you’re not able to set them up, meaning you don’t get the extra peace of mind that a standby generator provides.
Additionally, most standby generators function using your main gas line, meaning you don’t need to worry about stockpiling fuels such as diesel or gasoline, which can be unsafe and extremely costly.
Not many people know this but gasoline does need to be used or it eventually spoils, meaning storing large amounts of fuel for a portable generator is not only expensive and cumbersome but also wasteful.
While some standby generators can use fuels, the best options use the gas supply of your home as gas is often unaffected by power outages meaning you can benefit from a steady and constant supply of electricity should the power outage last for a very long time.
The benefits of a standby generator speak for themselves, and while standby generators are much more costly than portable generators, they are a much better solution to running your home, with greater efficiency, convenience, and a far better long-term performance outlook.
Do you need a standby generator?
If you’re someone who lives in a region with challenging weather conditions, a power grid under strain, or a rural area, a standby generator can really reduce a lot of stress and concern in your life.
Even people who simply want to be prepared for difficult situations could benefit from the unique design of a standby generator.
While some people may be fine with a small inverter to power essentials such as a refrigerator, freezer or a sump pump, people who are serious about preparing for challenging conditions consider the standby generator to be the absolute best option.
What to look out for
When purchasing a standby generator there are a few key things to look out for and keep in mind to ensure you get everything you need out of your new generator.
While the best options will use your gas line, some will use fuels instead but remember gasoline isn’t preferable as it has a short shelf life.
Generators can be loud, so ensuring you get one that isn’t going to disturb you or make your home a target in a disaster is key to keeping your generator and your family safe.
Generators can be quite large, and ideally you will be able to position yours somewhere out of reach of standing water and easily accessible for repair and maintenance.
Make sure to check building codes also, before you install and pay attention to ventilation and flammable material storage.
Understanding your needs and weighing them up against the cost of a generator is really important to make sure you get the value you need.
While a standby generator is the gold standard in preparation, a good inverter may be more practical for smaller homes or those on a very tight budget.