In Florida, whether because of a hurricane or a smaller storm, it’s always a possibility that our homes will lose power and leave us wondering—sometimes for days—when it will be restored. A backup generator is the only way we can be sure we’ll have electricity for basic necessities like refrigeration.
Many of us rely on portable generators, which can be a lifesaver when we don’t have any other options. But they pose their own challenges, and have some major drawbacks. A whole house generator is another option, but what are the benefits and drawbacks? Is a whole house generator in Pensacola, FL the best choice for your home?
At Commander Air, we believe in providing our customers with options and all the information they need to make their own decisions, because the homeowner knows best what will work for their family and provide long-term satisfaction. With answers to these questions about whole house generators, you can make an informed decision about whether to get one.
A portable generator certainly has its place. It does generate electricity, and depending on the size, it can keep an appliance or two running. But there are a host of drawbacks.
Fuel: To keep the generator running, you must have fuel on hand. Since you don’t always have advance notice of outages, that means keeping a fuel supply at all times.
Safety: Keeping a container of extremely flammable liquid in your home is a fire hazard. And the fuel itself, as well as the combustion of the generator, can create fumes which can also pose health risks if not vented properly.
Startup: A portable generator needs to be started manually. This can mean going out into the dangerous weather that caused the outage in the first place, or coming home after being away to find that the power’s been out for hours or days and your fridge and freezer are full of spoiled food.
Capacity: You may find yourself having to choose between running your air conditioner and keeping your refrigerator cold if a portable generator doesn’t have the capacity to power both.
Whole House Generators
Also called automatic standby generators, whole house generators avoid many of the problems that portable generators have.
Fuel: By connecting to your natural gas line, a whole house generator saves you from having to keep fuel on hand.
Safety: With no fuel containers and a built-in system for safely venting exhaust, a whole house generator provides a much safer solution to power outages.
Startup: As the term automatic standby indicates, a whole house generator comes on by itself when there’s an interruption to your home’s power supply, preventing a great deal of inconvenience.
Capacity: A whole house generator is designed to power your whole house, so you don’t need to choose which appliance to power.
Are there drawbacks? Yes, there are two. First, a whole house generator is more expensive than a portable generator. Second, you do need to be able to connect it to your natural gas line. If your home is not connected to your local natural gas system, there will be additional costs involved in extending a line to your home.
If you have additional questions, we would love to hear from you.
Contact the team at Commander Air Inc. Your hometown heating and cooling specialist for three generations.