Did you know that 2020 was the worst year on record when it comes to power outages in the U.S.?
If you’re worried about power disruptions (and you should be), you may wonder how an emergency backup generator works in your house. All of us have experienced power outages at some point in our lives, and they’re more common than we’d like to acknowledge.
However, a home backup generator may be a strong instrument to ensuring that a house or company does not suffer an electrical power outage at the worst possible moment.
How do backup generators work? If you’re wondering this, then you’ve come to the right place.
Keep on reading for our full breakdown of everything you need to know about backup generators.
Backup Generator Guide 101: The Machine’s Basics
An alternate power source is known as a backup or standby generator automatically activates and provides electricity in the case of an outage. When a bad storm produces a blackout in your area, you may rely on this as a backup power source.
You may buy a generator that can power your whole house or company, all the way down to ones that will merely keep the lights and your fridge running. Standby units can operate on a variety of fuels, including natural gas, diesel, and propane, so you have even more options available to you!
How Do Backup Generators Work?
A backup generator’s mechanical and electrical wiring might be a bit of a conundrum. Despite this, generators are essentially rather basic devices. Is that all there is to it?
If a generator detects any phase imbalance or voltage drop, it will immediately override the utility power. This function is known as an automatic transfer switch. If the utility power goes out, this gadget will immediately activate the generator. Then, it’ll begin feeding the home’s main circuit with electricity.
Natural gas or propane are the most often used fuel sources for whole-house generators. The motors in the generators are powered by this kind of fuel.
The mechanical energy generated by the motor is subsequently converted to electrical energy by an alternator or an inverter. The inverter is then fed into your home’s circuits.
Your backup generator will automatically shut down whenever utility power is restored and the mains voltage power is normal again, thanks to the automated transfer switch.
Sources of Power
There are several methods to power a home backup generator system. Some systems, such as those that run on gasoline or diesel, may utilize a single kind of fuel, but others employ a variety. There are a variety of fuel possibilities for a backup generator system, including liquid propane, natural gas, and more.
The only way to know for sure which system is appropriate for your requirements is to work with an experienced and qualified electrical contractor. You can look for the right electrician for generator systems here.
Regardless of the source of fuel, having on-demand backup electrical power may considerably minimize the stress associated with an unexpected power loss.
How to Connect a Generator to a Home’s Electrical System
To keep the lights on during a power outage until the grid is restored, portable generators may be a cost-effective solution. In comparison to a standby home generator, one of the major drawbacks of using a portable generator is the time and effort attached. It’s essential for making the changeover from the main power to the electricity that your portable generator can offer.
You’ll need either a power extension cable or an authorized adaptor to connect to your mains meter in order to power your appliances.
Before we get started, make sure you’ve read the documentation for your particular generator. To avoid electrical back feeding, never connect a generator into an electrical outlet.
In the event of a power outage, electrical back-feeding may have devastating effects on your home’s circuits, appliances, and people who may be trying to fix the problem with the grid.
You may either use an extension and generator cables or transfer switches to connect a portable generator to your house.
How Many Hours Can a Standby Generator Power Your Whole House?
A typical standby generator may last anywhere from 20 to 40 years in terms of total lifetime. How long can a single run of a whole-house generator last? No matter how long the power outage lasts, would a whole-house generator suffice?
Your generator’s fuel supply has an impact on this answer. When operating 24 hours a day, a 500-gallon tank of liquid propane should last for roughly a week on one of these models. It all comes down to the size of the gasoline tank.
A whole-house gas generator, however, can operate eternally as long as it has access to a steady supply of natural gas from your home’s natural gas supply. Natural gas generators are the best option if you require electricity for a long period of time, such as days or even weeks at a time.
Keep in mind that a home standby generator requires a working battery, and if that battery fails, you’re back to holding candles in the dark like your ancestors were. A new battery for your backup generator should be replaced every two years in order to avoid these kinds of complications.
Exploring Backup Generator Tips
If you’re a new homeowner, you’re now responsible for ensuring that your humble abode has a source of power when the traditional ones fail. Needless to say, it can be an overwhelming task for the uninitiated.
How do backup generators work? Hopefully, this guide has helped shed some light on the situation and helped you understand what factors you might need when you’re shopping for one.
If you liked reading our article, then you’ll love checking out our additional tips and strategies elsewhere on the site.