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What is a standby generator?

A standby generator, often called an emergency generator is a machine designed to produce electricity in the event your normal source of electricity (i.e. FPL) is disconnected or unavailable for an extended period of time.

The cost to own and operate a standby generator is directly related to how much power you need in the event of an emergency. Many people are surprised to find out that a standby generator is affordable when sized to true emergency conditions. For example, in the event of a hurricane, are you going to be running the A/C full time? Can you get by without the use of your hot water heater? Are you going to be having the family over for a turkey dinner?

By preparing ahead of time, you can figure out what electricity demands are absolutely necessary and see if you can afford a unit to fit your needs. Some simple math will allow you to see the total power (expressed in wattage or watts) you need to fulfill your demand. Since generator sizes are measured in watts or kilowatts (kW), once you know how many watts you need to run your home in an emergency you can then shop around to find a good value.

Most manufacturers recommend not maxing out the capacity of the generator. A good rule of thumb is size your generator for 125% of the total wattage you need. You can then shop around for comparison prices. Check to see what fuel the unit runs on. Common fuels are LP, Natural Gas, an Diesel. Find out the pros and cons to these different fuels and also availability.

BJ Electrical Service has experience wiring and installing numerous standby generators. We look forward to working with you!

Get your generator installed right, call 941-761-7601.

common household items wattage

  • 1 light bulb 60
  • refrigerator 800
  • freezer (stand alone) 500
  • well pump 1000
  • space heater 1800
  • ceiling fan 800
  • window A/C (10,000 BTU) 1200
  • microwave 1000
  • coffee maker 1500
  • television 27" 500
  • personal computer 800
  • garage door opener 500
  • hair dryer 1000 watt 1000
  • water heater 40 gal. 4000
  • washing machine 1150
  • dryer 5500