Prepping for a Denver Winter – Do you Need a Backup Generator?

Prepping for winter: Do you need a backup generator?We don’t like to think about it, but winter is soon approaching in the Denver area. If you live in Colorado, you know the importance of having sufficient heating, because the weather can get cold. In fact, making sure you have heating in case of an emergency like a power outage is important. Here at Electric Doctor, we are often asked about the importance of having a backup generator in case of a power outage in the Denver metro area. Here is our take:

What Exactly is a Backup Generator?

You may have heard of backup generators, but not know exactly what it is. A backup generator look like an air conditioning unit, but it doesn’t run on electricity. It’s called an “auxiliary electrical system.” The purpose of a backup generator is that it will automatically kick in when the power goes out, providing electricity to your home. Normally, backup generators run on natural or liquid propane gas, but they can also run on diesel. In our modern society, backup generators are much more standard than in the past. In fact, some places are required by law to have backup generators (for places that provide life support, or that have an elevator).

Is it Worth it for Me to Invest in a Backup Generator?

It can be difficult to know whether or not it’s important to have a backup generator for your home or for your business. The best way to think about it is to weigh the costs. For business, consider  how much money would you lose if the power went out for 2 hours? How much would you lose if it went out for a few days? Or, think about how you would stay warm, cook your food, or live in your home if the power went out during an outage. You may not realize just how much you business or home relies on power. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Furnace: Many people can withstand cold nights, but for others, it’s important they stay warm. The elderly and young children need to stay warm to stay healthy. If the power goes out, your furnace won’t work. Consider the health of the people in your home, and how well they could handle no heat.
  • Refrigerators: Refrigerators and freezers need electricity to run. If the power goes out, you won’t have any way to keep your food from spoiling. Your freezer will thaw, and you could lose your food. Most items need to be thrown away after only a few hours of being un-refrigerated.
  • Communication: If the power is out for long enough, you won’t be able to charge your devices. Your desktop computer won’t work, your laptop will run out of power, and you won’t be able to charge your phone (not to mention your Wifi will be down). This can be dangerous if an emergency arises – you won’t be able to call 911 for help.
  • Appliances: In addition to your refrigerator and freezer, your other appliances won’t work. This means you won’t have lights, TV, microwave, or (this is the most horrific) your coffee maker. It’s amazing to realize how much of your life requires electricity once you stop to think about it.

Questions? Call an Experienced Denver Electrician

It can be difficult to know whether or not having a backup generator is important. To determine the benefit in your life, consider how much electricity you use, and how well you would fare during a power outage. If you have any questions about the cost of installing a backup generator, or about generator wiring, call an experienced electrician at Electric Doctor for more information!

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