Since its introduction, electrical power has transformed the lives of billions. We depend on electricity for mobility, entertainment, survival and more. So, when the power fails we are left literally and figuratively in the dark. Like many modern systems, the electrical grid is not 100 percent reliable.
Small things like a squirrel getting into a transformer or a worker hitting the line can cause an outage. Weather is a common factor in power outages. In other words, life happens and when it does it is best to be prepared. The best means of being prepared is to have a generator on standby to provide you and your home with power when the grid does suffer a failure.
Standby Power Generation
Portable power generation is fine in most cases, but for those who are capable of going with standby power generation, the advantages are stark. The most obvious being that when a standby generator is installed, it will start within seconds of detecting a power outage. This means for many people, there is little interruption when transiting from utility power to generator power. In addition to responding quickly, a standby generator has a longer run time as they typically rely on natural gas or propane. Thus providing your home with power for extended outages.
They don’t have to stop to be refueled and thereby depriving you of power while refueling. They also are self-testing. This means they will periodically start, run for a few minutes and stop automatically, to make sure they are ready for an outage. They are easy to maintain and they can produce enough power for your entire house. Since they are connected to your home grid, there is no need to have to change plugs or alter your home to use your generator in an emergency. While they tend to cost more than a portable, if you depend on electricity it is better to have a dependable, standby generator for your home.
Five Great Home Generators
Best 12kW Standby Generator
Perfect for homes on compact lots, this generator – Briggs & Stratton Model #40532 Generator produces 12,000 Watts of electrical power. This is typically enough for a home of approximately 5,000 square feet and a four ton AC unit. It can be placed within 18 inches of the home and it unit itself is very compact compared to equivalent generators. It will self-test and it comes with a 100amp transfer switch for easy installation.
It can function with low gas pressure, with up to 7″ of the water column thus adding more capability in low fuel conditions. It comes backed by a five-year warranty. People who have purchased this unit enjoy the peace of mind in case of an outage and the fast and responsive customer service.
Top Rated Home Standby Generator
Champion PE is well known for their portable units but they also make good quality standby generators as well. This specific model – Champion Power Equipment Model #100179 Generator produces 12,500 Watts of electrical generation on natural gas. It has a unique, gullwing access design that makes for easy installation as well as fast and efficient maintenance.
This model comes with a transfer switch and the engine is equipped with a muffler design that reduces ambient noise during power generation. The engine is rated to function below freezing up to a -22-degree condition. It is backed by a five-year warranty. People who have this generator love the quiet operation and the dependable power on demand.
Best Air Cooled Standby Generator
Generac is a leading manufacturer of commercial level generators and they have taken that technology to the consumer level. The Generac Model #6462 Generator is a Guardian series generator, the same series approved with the Good Housekeeping Seal. Producing up to 16,000 Watts of power, this generator will easily cover a large to medium side home with plenty of surge demanding appliances.
The enclosure helps provide for quiet running and the generator can use either propane or natural gas with an easy flip of a switch on the engine. It comes with a 200amp transfer switch and the unit is certified UL, EPA and CUL compliant. People who have this generator on standby enjoy the quiet running, the efficient self-testing and the clean, stable power for their sensitive electronics.
Best Standby Generator for the Whole House
With a 20,000 Watt production, large homes packed with appliances can be supplied with power during an outage. This model – Kohler Model #20RESAL-200SELS Generator comes with a 200amp, load shedding, transfer switch and it is service entrance rated for top performance. Kohler is well known for their durable equipment and this generator does not disappoint.
The enclosure is also 100 percent corrosion resistant and is rated to be used in seaside communities. People who have purchased this generator love the fast response time during an outage and the dependable enclosure.
Best Top Rated Home Generator
Designed to deliver a near perfect, utility grade electrical power up to 22,000 Watts, this generator – Siemens Model #ASGE022RBA Generator is also among the quietest standby generators on the market. Backed by Siemens experience at producing all sizes and types of power generation equipment, this unit is designed to deliver the power with as less maintenance as possible.
While it does not come with a transfer switch, this unit can use either NG or Propane and the enclosure is 100 percent corrosion resistant. In addition, this generator can be fitted with remote access for easy monitoring. This model is new for the 2016 season.
For installation, it is better to have a qualified professional perform the installation as damage to your home or generator can result due to improper installation.