How long has it been since you had a home generator oil change on your Potomac, MD backup power system? If you can’t remember the date, odds are that it’s past time. While the particulars vary from one make, model and manufacturer to the next, a good general rule of thumb is to change the oil after about 60 hours of use.
If you have access to the official recommendation from the manufacturer of the generator you purchased, by all means, default to that, but if not, sixty hours is a good rule of thumb to fall back on.
Don’t have a generator to provide backup power in the event of an extended outage? If you don’t, you’re certainly not alone. Having said that though, it’s worth asking why not.
Here’s the simple truth: Most people don’t tend to think about their electricity, where it comes from and how dependent they are on its uninterrupted supply until and unless there is a problem. Of course, at that point, it’s far too late, and you’re going to have to cast about for other options to get you through the outage. Unfortunately, none of those options are great. They include:
Obviously, all of these are problematic. The first idea on the list is probably the best of the bunch from an economic standpoint, and if the outage doesn’t last terribly long, you may even be able to pull it off with minimal discomfort.
Of course, that depends on a lot of factors, including what time of year it is, how hot or cold it is, and what your tolerance for inconvenience is. Remember, when the lights go out, in the blink of an eye, you’re going to find yourself living a lot like people did back in Colonial days. When the sun goes down, unless you had the foresight to stock up on candles or oil lamps, you’re pretty much done for the day.
Then there are the practical considerations with living in a home lacking in power. How will you cook your meals? Do you have enough water for drinking, cooking and keeping the toilets flushed? If it’s hot, do you have some means to keep you and your family cool? If it’s cold, how do you plan on keeping warm?
These kinds of questions represent just the tip of the proverbial iceberg, but you get the idea. No matter how you slice it, making the decision to ride out an outage in your home without power can be a risky move if the outage extends for longer than just a couple of days.
Springing for a hotel for the duration is a great idea in theory, but even if you try to do it on the cheap, you’re looking at a minimum of sixty bucks a night in most places, for however many nights the outage continues, and that’s if you can find a hotel in the area that still has power. Depending on what caused the outage, that might be a problem, and if you don’t act quickly, all the rooms might be taken by people who have the same idea. Not only is it very expensive then, but it’s also something of a gamble. Maybe you’ll find a suitable room and maybe you won’t.
On the surface of it, staying with family or friends might seem like a decent compromise and if you have a strong, healthy relationship with your family or friends that could work for outages of relatively short duration. The longer the outage grinds on, however, the more of a strain the situation will put on those relationships and more than once, we’ve heard stories of them ending and ending badly.
Fortunately, there’s a simple solution that gets you around every single one of those less than optimal alternatives. Get a backup generator. Of course, there’s some prep work involved before you open up your wallet and spend money.
The very first step we recommend before you even start worrying about making a purchase than worrying over details like periodic home generator oil changes in Potomac, MD, is having a home energy audit conducted, and we can help with that.
Basically, that’s a fancy way of saying we’ll walk through your home and measure how much electricity you’re using, light by light and appliance by appliance. One of the major things we’ll find out when we do that is what the major drivers of your power use actually are, and once you know that, you can start making smart decisions about how big a generator you’ll actually need.
It’s an important first step, but it’s not the only one. After all, there are budgetary constraints to consider, as well as your own personal assessment of which specific appliances you’ll want to try and power during an outage.
Somewhere in the intersection of those variables, you’ll find the optimal size of your future generator, but even when you know that, it’s still not quite time to make a purchase. In addition to coming in all shapes and sizes, generators also come powered by a variety of fuel sources. You can get gas or propane powered generators, solar powered ones, and even a few generators that can be powered by multiple types of fuel.
Taking all of those factors into account, you’ll ultimately arrive at a firm understanding of how big a generator you’ll want to buy. Some people like taking a minimalist approach, powering only a few lights and one or two essential appliances. In those cases, a portable generator might be enough to get the job done.
Other people have more ambitious goals, with a desire to just about every appliance in their homes for as long as the outage might last. Obviously, in those cases, a portable generator isn’t going to cut it, and you’ll need to opt for something larger, more robust and fixed in its position.
There’s good news on that front too, however. We sell full-line, world-class Generac generators and would be happy to recommend one to you that will meet all your needs. If you decide to purchase one, we’ll install it for you, teach you how to use it, and if you prefer to outsource your periodic home generator oil changes on your Potomac, MD generator, we can take care of that too.
It’s something that a lot of people don’t consider, but regular maintenance is every bit as important to the integrity of your backup power plan as buying the generator itself. In fact, one could easily make the argument that your backup energy system is only as strong as your maintenance plan is.
Sure, we can come by and do periodic home generator oil changes on your Potomac, MD generator, but even better would be to get you signed up for our preventive maintenance contract. Consider this to be incredibly cost-effective insurance that will help keep your backup system in tip-top condition and ready to work whenever you need it, and let’s face it – if the lights go out, your generator just needs to work, without question or delay.
In addition to all that, we also offer a full range of electrical services to all our clients, both commercial and residential, so if you need your older home wiring brought up to code, we can do that. If you’ve recently added a room onto your home, we can make sure it’s wired for power and ready to use.
Best of all though, we’re also home automation specialists! If you haven’t considered home automation but are intrigued, there’s never been a better time to jump in with both feet. While it’s true that in the earliest days, the technology made the first home automation systems problematic, to say the least, most of those problems have been solved. Even better, there has been an explosion of smart appliances which have dramatically increased the scope of what home automation means in practice.
The bottom line is, whatever your needs are, from a simple, periodic home generator oil change in Potomac, MD to a robust whole-home automation setup, we’ve got you covered. Give us a call today and let’s talk about how we can help you.