Temporary Generators Still Shouldn’t Cut Corners

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When do you need a generator?
There isn’t much worse than settling in for a quiet night at home only to have the power shut off. At best you’ll end up reading a book by candle light, or going to bed early, to wake up and find the power has been restored overnight. The worst case scenario can be far more impactful. If power isn’t restored quickly, not only are you forced to suffer the mild inconveniences like getting dressed in the dark and going without any sort of electronic entertainment, you must also contend with more serious issues, like an inability to cook your food without an open flame, and the need to preserve any refrigerated or frozen foods you have. If the outage extends beyond a few days, you may find yourself in dire need of power, or you face a serious degradation of your quality of life.

Why choose a standby generator?
In an emergency situation like this, a backup generator can mean the difference between mild inconvenience and significant property damage/loss. If the area you live in is prone to blackouts or brownouts or if you simply want to avoid some of the discomfort that comes with power outages, a backup generator can be an excellent resource. Having a standby generator can save homeowners a lot of stress during extreme weather and power outages. Determining the right system for your home can be tricky, but there are resources out there that can help you find out which systems are right for you.

What sorts of problems could lesser generators cause?
Not all generators are created equal, however. William Pentland discusses some of the issues with smaller, off the shelf generators in his article on Forbes. Essentially, these smaller generators cut corners everywhere they can. Since they aren’t meant to be used for extended periods of time, they’re held to a far lower standard than more robust systems. This means that smaller, off the shelf generators can suffer from reliability issues. If they’re used for much longer than their rated times, they can begin to fail, or perform inconsistently, potentially causing just as many problems as you might have without it. At the very least, these devices aren’t made to run very efficiently, and you’ll likely using quite a bit of fuel, be it gasoline or propane, to keep them running. Not only is this costly, it’s also quite bad for the environment.

What are some solutions?
Professionally installed standby generators can offer peace of mind in the face of serious weather issues. They can keep vital home appliances running during power outages, and help homeowners maintain their standard of living through these times. Buyers should beware of cheap, inefficient generators because, while they may offer short term relief, they aren’t likely to be long term solutions.

Betty Abernathy

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