ACI Northwest Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Whole House Generator’

With a Generator You Won’t Need Luck To Keep the Lights On

Friday, March 12th, 2021

A home generator that provides electricity during a power outage. It is connected to a propane gas supply.When a big storm rolls through town and knocks out your power, how ready will you be? Maybe you have a portable generator that you can dig out and get running to keep the lights in your home on … mostly. Even with one of these systems though, it can be hard to keep your home running. You don’t have to rely on luck to keep your lights on though. There is a more reliable option you can turn to: a whole-house generator.

If you haven’t considered a whole-house generator for your home’s electricity needs, now might be the perfect time to give this option some attention.

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Keep Your Generator Maintained with Professional Services

Monday, October 12th, 2015

If they are working properly, whole-home generators only power on when there is no electrical service in your home, which means it can be difficult to tell if there is an issue with the unit. Many generators do have a self-test feature, which could alert you if there are any problems with the unit. However, we still recommend that homeowners schedule regular professional maintenance for their generators in order to prevent problems from occurring when you really need the system to work. Here’s what you can do on your own to keep your standby generator maintained, and how to tell you should call in a professional.

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Heating Question: Can My Generator Power My Heating System in an Outage?

Monday, October 1st, 2012

Back-up generators come in many types and sizes. There are many that are perfectly capable of powering a heating system during a power outage, but you’ll need to know how much energy your heating system needs, as well as how much energy you’ll be using for other appliances like your refrigerator, television, lights and microwave.

Calculating Your Wattage Use

You’ll have to check your heating system and other appliances to find out exactly how much energy they each use. But just to get a general idea of what this total will be like, we can use some common numbers from current energy star models. On average, a furnace fan takes 400-600 watts to keep running, a refrigerator uses about 200 watts and a microwave consumes about 1,200 watts when in operation.

These numbers don’t tell the whole story, though, because they don’t take into account the fact that most of these appliances take much more energy to start than they do to keep running. For instance, that same furnace fan requires about 1,600 watts to start and the refrigerator likely needs another 1,600. Of course, you don’t need to turn all of these appliances on at once, so if you’re careful and creative with when and in what order you use them, you can get by with much less available wattage.

Generator Types

Both portable and stationary generators are available in a wide variety of sizes, although stationary systems are generally much more powerful than their portable counterparts. If you plan on powering your home for a long period of time or you have a lot of powerful appliances you want to keep on, a stationary generator may be necessary.

For more information about installing a generator in your home, give ACI Northwest a call!

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Generator Tip: Whole House Generator FAQs

Monday, August 13th, 2012

If you are thinking about buying a new whole house generator in Spokane, you probably have a few questions about how to select and install the right model. Here are a few common questions and their answers on this topic:

 What Sizes Are Available for Whole House Generators?

Whole house generators generally come in sizes between 22 and 48 kilowatts. The number of kilowatts you want in a generator depends on the number of amps your home consumes. We know the maximum because no home consumes more than 200 amps due to limits in the electrical grid. A 22 kilowatt generator, for example, would replace 92 amps in your home, more than enough for most days – though probably not enough to keep your air conditioner running through the night.

How Long Does a Generator Last?

A quality whole house generator is often rated for up to 20 years of operation in standby conditions. That means that it will last for 20 years while actively installed on your property. That does not mean it can be operated continuously for 20 years, and operational lifespan will vary by model.

How Much Space Does a Generator Need?

You should allow for at least 3-5 feet on all sides of the generator for ventilation and to ensure nothing can get caught up in the system. It should be in a clear space away from entrances to your home but close enough to be easily wired into your electrical system during installation.

What Maintenance is Required?

The actual maintenance needed will depend largely on how often the system is actively used. Either way, it is recommended that you change the oil and all filters once per year. A full inspection is recommended if the system is used for more than 24 hours consecutively in that time period.

If you have any questions about installing a generator in your Spokane home, give ACI Northwest a call today!

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