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Benefits of Having a Whole-House Standby Generator

Dec. 06, 2023
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Think about this for a second - what would you do if you lost power in your house for an extended period of time? You would have no light, no appliances, the food in your refrigerator would be spoiled, and you can say goodbye to your electronics. Needless to say, power outages can cause extreme discomfort if you don’t have an alternate power source.

Having a backup generator in your home means that in the unfortunate event of a power outage, you will have a dependable energy solution that will allow you to use your lights, appliances, and other electronics. Whole-house generators, also known as standby generators, are typically much larger and more expensive than portable generators, but they offer maximum benefits when you need them the most.

What Are the Benefits of a Standby Generator vs. Portable Generator?

Unlike a portable generator, a whole-house standby generator can power all of your home’s major appliances, including your HVAC system, refrigerator/freezer, alarm system, garage door opener, sump pump, water heater, and more. Having power during an outage also means your electronics, such as cell phones and laptops, will be kept charged. While a standby generator’s purpose is to provide electricity to your entire home during an outage, it can also be tailored to only power specific appliances, based upon your preferences.

Benefits of whole-house standby generators:

  • Improved safety & security – Unlike portable units, whole-house standby generators don't release fumes and therefore prevent carbon monoxide buildup inside your home. In addition, they allow for lighting in the event of a blackout, helping to prevent trips and falls, and other related accidents.
  • Enhanced efficiency – While portable generators can only deliver a limited amount of power considering they need to be refilled with gas every few hours, whole-house standby generators can provide any given amount power for as long as necessary since they connect to an existing gas line.
  • Super convenient – Standby generators turn on automatically as soon as the power goes out, providing electricity for essential appliances, including air conditioners, water heaters, refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, and more. Portable generators, on the other hand, must be manually turned on and may not be able to power items hardwired to the home.
  • Saves money – Since whole-house generators help to prevent problems like spoiled food in the refrigerator or frozen pipes during the winter, you can steer clear of unexpected costs and headaches. If you were to experience several power outages over ten years, for example, the savings that a standby generator could provide would add up, providing a positive a return on your investment.

Safety and Security

During a blackout in your home, the risk of falling or tripping over something because you can’t see your surroundings are much higher. A whole-house generator solves this problem and ensures you will be able to comfortably move from room to room without worrying about tripping over something in the dark.

Separately, whole-house generators do not allow for the buildup of carbon monoxide inside your home, which is a common issue with portable generators. Standby generators do not emit as many fumes as portable generators do, making them better for your overall health and home environment.

Standby generators essentially act as an insurance policy for your home, giving you peace of mind that your home will be protected during a blackout.


Whole-house generators can power as much as you need for as long as you need. Compared to portable generators, which have a threshold for the amount of power they can provide, whole-house generators can provide power to your home and there will be no need to refuel it. In the event you are away from your home or on vacation during a power outage, whole-house generators will ensure that your sump pump is running and your home’s alarm system is working.

Ultimate Convenience

With the flip of a switch, your whole-house generator will provide total home function during a power outage. When the power goes out, you simply turn on the power switch of the generator and your electricity will be up and running within a few seconds. Standby generators guarantee that you will have access to all of your major appliances and critical functions of your home.

Save Money Down the Line

While the initial purchase and installation of a standby generator can be costly, the investment will save you money down the line in appliance repairs and potential pipe replacements. If there is a power outage during the winter, a standby generator can prevent your home’s pipes from freezing. Whole-house generators also keep your refrigerator running, meaning you don’t have to worry about throwing away spoiled food.

Don’t wait until the next power outage to decide on installing a whole-house generator. If you want guaranteed safety and security during a blackout, Current Electric is here to help. Contact us today to speak with one of our generator specialists.

Have you ever had the power go out at the worst possible time? Most of us have probably experienced an inconvenient power outage in the middle of cooking, gaming, watching an intense sports match, or hosting guests. Adding a generator to your home can make this inconvenience a thing of the past.

Of course, it’s hard to pull the trigger on adding a generator if you don’t know the benefits of a backup generator in the first place. In this article, we’ll explain the benefits of both permanent and portable generators, and tell you about some of the different types of generators.

General Benefits of a Generator

Having a backup power generator is a smart idea in case of a severe outage. Generators keep you prepared by providing backup power when a blackout occurs.

Types of Generators

Consumer-tier generators can typically be put into one of two categories: portable generators or standby generators (permanent). Both types have distinct advantages and use cases that make them ideal for certain situations.

Portable generators are best used for rare outages and for powering devices when away from home. Permanent generators are ideal for locations where power outages are common, or there is a need to consistently supply your own power.

Benefits of a Permanent Generator

Permanent generators, also known as standby generators, are stationary power generators fueled by either natural gas or propane. They can plug directly into local gas utility lines, so you don’t need to refuel them like you would a portable generator.

These generators automatically sense when an outage occurs and provide power to your home within seconds of an outage. Standby generators also provide more power than the average portable generator. Some models can generate enough energy to power an entire home.

Benefits of a Portable Generator

Portable generators are often used to power specific devices and need to be manually fueled with gasoline. They need to be used outside, as they expel carbon monoxide, which can be deadly in an enclosed space. Most are started manually via ripcord, like a lawnmower.

If you are using a portable generator to power a home during an outage, it can only power a four-outlet plug or a few circuits. It’s best for running only the essentials.

Power Generator FAQs

How long can a backup generator power a house?

How long a generator can power a building will depend on the generator's capacity and the home's size. Portable generators can only power a house for a few hours at a time, while a standby generator, or permanent generator, can power a home for dozens of days.

What size generator do I need to backup my house?

To calculate the required generator size for your home, you need to identify the running watts for all the items you wish to power and then find a generator that can power all of those devices. The square footage of your home, the size of your appliances, and various other factors will all influence the size of the generator needed to back up your home.

Do I really need a generator for my home?

If you live in a storm-prone area, specifically an area with regular hurricanes or supercell storms, a power generator can help prevent multi-day outages. This will keep your food from spoiling and keep your climate control running. When deciding if you need a generator, consider the impacts of a long-term outage and if you would be able to tolerate it.

Call Neighborly for Help Choosing and Installing the Right Power Generator

If you’ve decided that you need a generator, Neighborly® can help. The team of experts at Mr. Electric®, part of the Neighborly family of brands, can install your generator and help you choose the right size.

Call today or schedule a service online to ensure your home never goes without power again.

Benefits of Having a Whole-House Standby Generator

Benefits of a Power Generator | Neighborly® Expert Tips



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