Purchasing a generator for your home is a wise investment, especially if you live in an area with extreme weather. Not only will this investment keep you safe and comfortable, but it will also add value to your home.
Having a generator on hand will help you stay warm (or cool) if you lose power during a seasonal storm, prevent your food from spoiling, prevent pipes from freezing, and ensure medical devices are always functioning properly.
Choosing the right home generator is a must for success. Here are the top five considerations when investing in a home generator.
Home Size and Power Needs
When choosing one of the in-stock generators from Jennings Heating and Cooling, the expert staff recommends starting with the size of your home and estimated power needs. Take some measurements to ensure your sizing is accurate, and make a list of your top priority electronics to keep online (i.e., your freezer, heating system, CPAP machine, etc.)
When looking for a backup power source, choosing a whole house generator is the best option for the average homeowner. However, if you live in a place that rarely experiences power outages or your primary reason for getting a generator is camping or operating a cottage, an inversion generator may be a better option.
The Fuel Type and Consumption
The next consideration when choosing a generator is the fuel type it uses to function. Whole house generators typically run on natural gas or propane. While you can get whole house generators that run on gasoline or diesel, they’re less convenient and tend to have a shorter lifespan.
You’ll also want to look at the fuel tank size, consumption rate, and running hours per tank. With natural gas, there’s no concern about having to refuel, but it’s good to understand the costs associated with using your generator and plan for refueling needs.
Whole house generators are wired into your home, similar to an external air conditioning unit. The top priority when determining placement is safety. As generators burn combustible fuel, it’s integral to have them placed away from flammable objects, entrances, and windows. It’s also wise to have your generator placed above ground level in the event of significant rain or a snowstorm.
The next consideration is convenience. You’ll have to maintain and refuel your generator, so it’s wise to have easy access to it. A skilled generator installation specialist will be able to advise on the place to install your generator to connect to natural gas (if needed) and to ensure safety and access.
Noise Level and Regulations
The one downside to running a generator is the noise. Even the highest-quality generators emit noise as they run, which can be annoying during extended periods of use.
Before you decide on a generator model, check on the approximate decibel level it emits and cross-references this information with any neighborhood noise ordinances. While you can’t place a generator inside because of the fuel, you can create noise barriers and insulation around them to limit how far the sound travels.
Warranty and Customer Service
The final consideration pertains not to the generator itself but to the company you buy it from. It’s integral to choose an expert supplier and installer who provides exceptional customer service and guarantees both the product and installation.
Evaluate the warranty before buying. Ideally, you’ll get coverage for five years, as high-quality whole house generators can last for 20 years or longer. It’s sometimes possible to purchase an extended warranty, which is worth it if you live in an area with extreme weather.
Keep these considerations in mind when shopping for a whole house generator. This worthwhile investment will improve the value of your home and keep you covered when you need it most.