Winter is a nasty time to experience a power outage. Severe cold and icy weather can put your family at serious risk during a prolonged outage. Furthermore, due to the size and severity of major winter storms, it's not uncommon for large groups of people to be without power for days at a time.
Fortunately, a standby generator can eliminate all of the risks associated with a winter power outage. Integrating a standby generator into your existing electrical wiring will cause you to take on upfront costs—however, there are a number of compelling reasons why you'll be glad you did when the next winter storm hits.
Reason #1: They Protect Your Plumbing
When the power goes out, homeowners with electric water heaters and some tankless models could find themselves without hot water. Your quality of life suffers greatly when you're forced to take cold showers in the middle of winter. That said, an even bigger problem than hygiene comes in the form of frozen pipes.
Hot water flowing through your home's plumbing is the best way to ensure that your pipes do not freeze. During an outage, the absence of hot water causes standing water to freeze—which in turn forces the water to expand when it turns to ice. Repairing this problem can cost upwards of $135 per frozen pipe. Multiple frozen pipes and water damage can cause that number to rise quickly.
Reason #2: Carbon Monoxide Isn't an Issue
Many people consider a small portable generator to be a price-conscious alternative to a standby generator. Since most power outages are dealt with in a timely manner, you might not have to run your generator very often. However, if you do need to run your portable generator for an extended period, it causes a health risk in the form of carbon monoxide. Using portable generators for an extended period of time brings the risk of many serious health problems, including: dizziness, chest pain, nausea, and loss of consciousness.
A standby generator—because it is located outside of your home—runs without having an impact on the air quality of your home. This makes it the only safe option during an extended power outage.
Reason #3: You Can Continue to Eat
A freezer that is half-full will keep food edible for 24 hours. If you're fortunate enough for a power outage to strike when you have a full freezer, that number goes up to 48 hours. After that point, you run a serious risk by eating the food you have in your home. If you're completely snowed in, it might be difficult to replace this food for a while.
Your standby generator can ensure that your family eats well during the outage. It also ensures that food preparation remains possible during even the longest outages. Your family will eat as it normally does while your neighbors struggle by on bread and cereal.
Reason #4: It'll Pay You Back
Not all home improvements are sunk costs. Some additions to your home allow you to charge a higher price when you list your home on the market. A standby generator is one such improvement.
Some analysts consider standby generators to be one of the top 10 investments you can make in your home's resale value. You'll not only benefit from the additional safety and peace of mind that a generator brings, but also a richer reward on your next move. This makes the overall cost of your generator much lower than it initially appears.
So, instead of entering the winter storm season unprepared or with unreliable portable protection, consider adding a standby generator to your home. Even though the initial investment is significant, the long-term benefits more than outweigh the upfront costs. Talk to resources such as All American Air & Electric, Inc. for further information.
Does your heating bill send you into a state of shock? If so, now is the time for you to begin making changes to your home to bring the cost of heating your home down. In years past, my heating bill was actually more than my mortgage was. It really made getting through the winter difficult for my family. I decided to do something about the high bills. I started with insulation, then invested in some new windows, and I also changed the way that we used our utilities. You can learn everything that I did to reduce my heating bill so that you can cut your heating bill as well.