Most home or small business owners have probably thought it would be great to have a backup generator at times. But is it worth the cost? Only the home or business can make that decision, but here are some reasons why our customers have decided to install a generator. The following are not in any order of importance except the first:
- Health Issues
- Area with unusual amount of outages
- Grandparents that want their home to be somewhere the family can gather in an emergency
- Experienced an extended outage
- Safety concerns
- Work from home
- Travelers want their homes protected while away (sump pumps, freezers, refrigerators, electric heat, etc.)
Here are some quick recent St. Louis power outage facts:
September 1, 2016: 4000 without power due to woman grabbing a wire at substation. Amazingly, woman was taken to hospital and survived.
August 15, 2016: 15,000 without power due to falling trees/weather.
July 13, 2016: 165, 000 were without power after storms, falling trees/weather.
July 25, 2016: 14,000 without power due to falling trees/weather.
May 11, 2016: 22,000 without power due to falling trees/weather
The most memorable is undoubtedly the St. Louis ice storm of 2006 when AmerenMO reported a peak of 510,000 customers without power. 300,000 were without power for over 4 days and we worked with customers that were moved out of their homes for up to two weeks. It was then that many decided they would have a generator installed.
The options available for home backup generators:
Automatic full backup: It provides 24/7 automatic backup of your entire home.
Critical needs backup: Critical need automatic backup generators work exactly like the name. You choose your critical needs and it is sized to handle that load.
Manual transfer switch: This installation is for use with a portable generator. This is also a popular cost effect choice for backup power. With that stated, it does require some customer hands on experience and you should be trained by a licensed electrician on how to safely put the generator in place when needed for safe ventilating. A transfer switch allows for a portable generator to be connected to the home electrical system safely disconnecting you from the utility grid. This eliminates the possibility of any dangerous electrical feedback.
If you are considering a backup generator, use a contractor that has a free home or commercial assessment of your backup needs and sizes your generator specifically for you. Most homes do not need full backup, as the fuel availability to sustain a full backup generator is not only costly but in an emergency situation may be unrealistic. A critical needs system is the easiest and most cost effective way to go for most home owners. It’s also a good idea to use a company that not only sells the generators but installs them. Make sure they have plenty of references, are licensed, and insured. Use one that does not require a large down payment, a reputable company will not need to take half your money before you get a generator. Check the BBB for reviews and to make sure any company is in good standing.
Any questions or comments, please post them. We enjoy getting feed back and would love to hear the reasons you feel a generator would be beneficial.
Although May was National Electrical Safety Month, certainly each month should have safety in mind. Therefore, I am following up my May safety suggestions with an additional safety article on swimming and electrical shocks for June. Families are heading on vacation and there is nothing more refreshing in this hot weather than a day at the pool or lake for swimming and water sports. The Kids are happy and that makes for an enjoyable outing and we want to keep it that way. Below are some reminders and suggestions regarding electrical safety around pools and lakes, and these recommendations apply to hot tubs also.
There are plenty of sources of electricity around these areas that can cause electrical shock such as pool lights, pump equipment, power cords, or other electrical items, even overhead power lines. If you ever feel a shock or tingling sensation while in the water move away from the area (exit the same way you entered the area) and get out of the water if possible. However do not use a metal ladder.
If you see others moving away and a motionless swimmer in the area it is cause for concern and you should also move away. Immediately turn off all power sources and call 911. Trying to rescue someone being shocked in the water is very dangerous unless all sources of power have been shut off. The rescuer will likely become a victim if all power sources are not accessed and it is confirmed that water is no longer a danger. Some recommendations from the american Red Cross are as follows:
Use a fiberglass Shepherd's crook/rescue hook to reach the victim and make sure you are braced. Use the loop to encircle the victim's body if necessary to pull them to the edge. Make sure they are face up. Carefully remove them from the water and position them on their back. Check if they are breathing; if not, give two rescue breaths. Check for circulation, breathing, coughing or movement. If there are no signs, begin CPR.
Swimming in a lake, near a boat, or dock has its own hazards. Always obey no swimming signs and do not swim near docks or marinas. For more information on safety in these areas visit:
CSE Electric, LLC hopes that all of you have a safe and enjoyable summer. Remember the best way to protect your home and family is to have a licensed electrician inspect and perform all work on your home or business.
Each year lives are claimed due to electrical accidents. As part of a nationwide effort by Electrical Safety Foundation International, May has been designated as National Safety Month. CSE Electric, LLC is proud to take part in this public education drive to raise awareness about electrical safety. By simply checking for problems in your home or business
On this CSE Electric, LLC blog page we will strive to provide the community with helpful information relating to electrical safety, energy saving ideas, and project information. We will also be sharing personal stories relating to our electrical work and experiences thru our 29 years of experience in serving the St. Louis, MO area.
If you have something you would like us to discuss, please contact us. We will do our best to answer any electrical questions.