Generator – Does Size Matter?
Just when you thought that spring was on its way, Jack Frost and Mother Nature teamed up to bring you another winter storm. Rain, sleet, snow…no problem. You have bread and milk for days, but what happens when your power goes out? If you had a whole home generator, you would be warm and toasty and so will your milk and bread.
But what size generator do you need? The quick answer is, it depends. There are many factors that take play in a decision of buying a whole home generator-home size, what you are looking to keep running and of course, budget.
These days most households are heavily reliant on electricity. People can barely survive without their phones, much less be without power for days. Having a whole home generator can deliver power to your entire house during a loss of power, but it can also be designed to only supply power to “necessary” appliances. The choice is really up to you.
You can make some basic calculations using a whole home generator calculator. These will help you get a general idea of the size generator you would need, but it is always best to have a trained professional from Godby to help you make this assessment. This is not a DIY project and it is always a good idea to be an informed consumer.
Ok, lets start from the beginning. First, we are going to assume that you have a standard 200 amp service in your home. Now, make sure you know how many square feet your home is. You will need the square footage for the calculations.
Your best bet is to write a list of everything that you want to keep running if the power were to go out. Start with the essentials like your lights, HVAC system (maybe), refrigerator/freezer and any medical equipment you may have that has to keep running. Yes, keeping your refrigerator and/or freezer running is a good idea. If you have to replace the food, it could cost your thousands of dollars. Do you want a hot shower? How about your sump pump? These are all things to consider.
Now determine what other appliances you want to be able to use to keep your family reasonably comfortable. Do you want to be able to cook and use the oven? How important is it to use the coffee maker? Will you need to wash clothes? These are all legitimate questions. You may be surprised just how much power you are using at any given time. When you are considering which appliances are important to power, you need to look at the top range of power they use. Sometimes they take that top amount of power to surge back on. Better safe than sorry. So, you may have to tell your kids the video games, hairdryers and electronics will have to wait. Those are not at the top of the list!
The generator calculators will have you plug in these numbers to determine what size might work best for your family. Kohler usually gives you a few options within a certain range. You can readjust your must haves when you see the results.
When considering your budget for a whole home generator there are a few more things that you need to look at. First and foremost is, of course, the upfront cost of the whole home generator, but you also need to look at the cost to install the generator. Install is not based on a flat rate and will be determined on an individual basis based on your home and your needs.
The sight where the generator will be located will need to be prepared. Consider where your current electrical panels and meters are located. The whole home generator will need to be located as close to both of these as possible. You will also need a concrete pad to put the generator on. Your home’s electrical service may need to be updated or upgraded. Your gas meter may need the same. These are all things to consider when putting your budget together.
It is best to get a transfer switch for your generator. The transfer switch will make sure that when your power goes out, your generator turns on. Think you don’t need this switch because you can personally turn your generator on if you need it? What happens if you are out of town? You won’t be there to turn your generator on leaving your home and its contents to the mercy of no power.
Like any piece of equipment, your whole home generator will need to be maintained. Even if you did not use your generator for a season, you still need to make sure you have it tuned up on a regular basis. This will ensure that when there is an emergency, your generator will turn on and function properly.
Maybe you’re thinking you can’t afford a whole home generator, but can you afford not to? Keeping your family safe is worth it. Plus, Godby HPE offers financing enabling you to have the peace of mind you want at a price you can afford. Call Godby today to find out what generator best fits your family’s needs. For all of your heating, cooling, plumbing and electrical needs, remember It’s Gotta be Godby.