An emergency generator can thwart a power outage

Jul 11, 2022, 4:30 PM | Updated: Jul 21, 2022, 3:10 pm

backup generator emergency...

FILE: Standby generators run on natural or propane gas and are permanently installed to a home. (Photo credit: DIY Network via Deseret News)

(Photo credit: DIY Network via Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — We are in prime time for power outages in Utah. The seven-day forecast shows triple digits all the way to the weekend, and there are wildfires burning around the state. Both conditions by themselves can lead to a loss of power. Together, the chances just go up.

So, how do we prepare? What can we do to protect ourselves during these scorching summer months? One way is to get an emergency backup generator.

Get an emergency backup generator

Jason Kelly from Superior Water and Air explains that an emergency backup generator can not only keep your air conditioner running during the hottest parts of the day, but also keep your food from spoiling, door cameras and security alarm equipment running, and medical equipment operating.

“We get a lot of calls from customers every year that have medical sleeping devices or other life support type systems who are worried if they’re asleep in the night, and the power goes out, that their CPAP machines or other devices might not operate or keep them healthy or alive in some cases,” Kelly said.

Don’t confuse these generators with the smaller gasoline-operated generators you might keep in your garage and take camping. These are larger, permanently installed generators. They are attached to your home and run on natural gas or propane if there is a loss of natural gas.


“Generators come in all different sizes,” Kelly explained. “Some people will do a generator just to power a couple of things – a furnace and a refrigerator, maybe just keep the bare-bones minimum going.

“Other people will power their house so they have their computers.

“Since COVID-19, with more people working from home either part or full time, people are getting these generators to make sure that their internet service is not interrupted so their Zoom meetings and other work responsibilities are not threatened,” Kelly said.

The generator will run the house until the power comes back on

How much protection does a home standby generator provide? In other words, how long will it keep the power going?

“As long as it needs to really,” Kelly said. “They’re designed to run indefinitely until the power comes back on. During the last wind storm, we had generators that were running for weeks upon weeks until the power was fully restored.”

For more information or tips, visit the Be Ready Utah website.

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