In an age of smart homes, multiple home computers and internet-connected TVs, reliable power supplies are more important than ever before. At the very same time, both natural and man-made threats to the electric grid are increasing. North Dakota homeowners want to know that they can count on electric-powered HVAC systems, whether temperatures soar above a hundred degrees or dip well below zero.
The demand for standby home generators is rising as homeowners respond to a variety of challenging developments:
Increased dependence on residential power – Many of today’s smart homes feature integrated systems that regulate lighting, TVs, door locks, garage door openers, thermostats and other vital systems. Families rely on electricity to recharge the batteries that operate their personal mobile devices. Also, overall home security is optimized when a continuous power supply is ensured. The cost of extended power outages quickly escalate when frozen and refrigerated food valued at hundreds of dollars is put at risk.
Aging power grid – With much of the nation’s power grid many decades old, the threat of power outages due to an aging infrastructure increases. The total cost of needed repairs and upgrades exceeds $2 trillion. Therefore, it is not surprising that the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) gives our energy infrastructure a D+ grade. In fact, the total infrastructure investment required by 2020 is $3.6 trillion, according to an ASCE estimate.
Threats to the grid – Power grid failures occasionally happen because of unlikely culprits – squirrels. The Washington Post discussed a variety of outages caused by, of all things, squirrels. They can wreak havoc by gnawing through the insulation on power lines and by burrowing under fences and into electrical substations. The American Public Power Association even maintains a squirrel index that tracks blackouts caused by squirrels!
Many homeowners want to know that they can still power their homes should there ever be a damaging cyber attack against the grid. In February 2016, Forbes suggested that a such a future scenario is now “likely” after hackers took down a portion of the Ukrainian power grid.
Increasing storm intensity – The severity and frequency of severe storms appear to be increasing as overall global temperatures rise. This may mean more power outages of greater duration in the future. The cost and inconvenience of a days-long outage should not be underestimated. Popular Mechanics discussed the advantages of home standby generators in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
High winds are not the only threat when summer thunderstorms and winter blizzards strike. Also, as the Weather Channel notes, severe ice storms can bring wreak havoc on electric lines. Severe ice storms have interrupted power supplies for days or even weeks at a time. A more active atmosphere yields more lightning strikes, some of which cause blackouts by taking out transformers. The loss of a single major transformer can interrupt the delivery of electricity to thousands of utility customers.
Peace-of-mind is Valuable
A home standby generator offers an intangible but very important benefit – peace-of-mind. A property owner can take real comfort in knowing that, in the event of a power outage, all home systems and appliances will continue to operate properly. With a home standby generator installed, you’ll no longer feel anxious when a severe storm approaches. A feeling of calm is of particular value when you happen to be away at work or on a vacation when inclement weather closes in on your residence.
Midwest Electric & Generator offers North Dakota residential generator sales, installation, service and maintenance. Our highly trained and experienced staff will gladly help you evaluate your specific generator needs. For prompt, professional and friendly service that addresses all of your electrical needs, please contact us today.