Do You Really Need a Generator?

energy powered from generatorsHow important is electricity to our daily lives? More important than we think. I always think that spending the day without electricity might be peaceful. I remember when Hurricane Sandy struck our area, the high winds and rain that wreaked havoc at the Jersey Shore, left some areas of Lehighton without any power for days. I think our power was out for four or five days during this late October storm that dampened Halloween and all of our spirits.

When the power first goes out, you think, “Hey, this might be fun.” The flashlights come out and there is about an hour or so where the inability to turn on the lights is enjoyable. Then, you want to wash your hands or use the restroom and you remember just how much you rely on the power in your home.

We use electricity all day long—there is electricity in the thermostat that prompts your heating system to turn on, there is electricity in the pump that runs when your toilet flushes, there is electricity even in that propane fireplace to get it to turn on. Starting to feel pretty grateful for this natural energy source. And even more grateful to Benjamin Franklin for his discovery of how to channel this resource for our benefit.

After about 5 days without power, a hotel bill from when the fun of playing pioneers wore off, and the need to replace $200 to $300 in groceries, the idea of a generator started to sound quite appealing to us.

But, where to start?!?!

Some people require a generator as they rely on medical equipment for their day to day survival. Others prefer the convenience and piece of mind of knowing that when they lose power, there is a back up and life will be only minimally interrupted. We live in a time where the need for constant connection becomes even more apparent when there is no power.

What options are there?

Portable generators are an economical choice and can be used to run essential circuits during a power outage. These typically run on gas and are used to run a limited number of items. The homeowner needs to fill the generator with fuel and keep an eye on when the fuel needs to be replaced. These are designed primarily for mobile activities, such as job sites, camping, or tail gating. At your residence, this would be used to keep your refrigerator running and possibly the well, but would not power the entire house. Despite the fact that this type of generator is mobile, it should never be run inside of the house. Running a portable generator too close to the house can result in carbon monoxide fumes. These fumes are odorless and colorless, but can cause major illness or even death.

Standby generators also run essential circuits at minimum, but can keep the entire house running depending on the kilowatt power in the unit. These automatically start when the power is out, so there is absolutely no interruption of service. They also do not require refueling as they are tied into a natural gas or an LP gas source.

Standby generators also provide priceless peace of mind to homeowners. They keep pipes from freezing because the heat keeps running. They also keep the basement sump pump running, which can avoid flooding. Power outages go hand in hand with major storm systems. Major storm systems mean rain, rain, wind, and more rain. When the power goes out and the sump pump fails, basements flood quickly. The clean up afterward can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars. And that doesn’t include the loss of those items you inherited from Great-Grandma. That loss is priceless.

You’re probably wondering if you can afford to install a standby generator. The question you may need to ask yourself is, can you afford not to?!?

As always, we’re here to answer any questions you have about a new generator installation. We also provide financing options for all of your household needs.