Benefits of a Home Standby Generator

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 16,164
    Frank Assaro with Cummins Onan discusses the benefits of a backup power system.

    Frank Assaro: Hi, I'm Frank Assaro with Cummins Onan. Today I'll be discussing the benefits of a backup power system.

    What is a generator? Well, in scientific terms, it is a device that converts mechanical energy to electrical energy. When in Layman's terms, it is a running motor and an alternator, creating electricity. The fact is, your power can go out for any number of reasons. Utility transformer simply fails due to outage, or a work crew interferes with an underground cable. No matter what the cause, when electrical service to your home is interrupted, you can either put up with a power loss or take a proactive stance and install a generator.

    With a correctly sized home standby generator, your life can continue without any ill effects. So, to be prepared, you must have a backup power source. Homeowners can choose from manual portable generators, or automatic stationary standby systems. A portable generator requires manual start, whereas an automatic system starts almost immediately following power loss to the home.

    You must also maintain fuel in a portable generator, whereas a permanently installed automatic system will have a continuous fuel supply. So you don't have to worry about running out of fuel during a typical power outage.

    Automatic home standby generators can typically carry larger heating and air conditioning loads and deliver cleaner power compared to their portable counterparts.

    When using a portable, the homeowner needs to run extension cords through the home to their generator. With automatic systems, the electrical interconnection has already been taken care of during installation.

    One last thing to consider is the operation and storage. An automatic home standby generator's fully enclosed, protected from the weather, and is more quiet compared to most portable options. Portables need to be stored indoors, but wheeled outside when needed.

    So those are just some of the differences between manual portable generators and automatic standby systems.