Power outages happen. There is no doubt. Purchasing a home standby generator is a proactive step in saving yourself from the frustration, and money, a power outage can cost. Aside from the inconvenience of not being able to utilize the recreational electronics in your home, you could lose food, be subjected to extreme temperatures and be left to replace expensive electronics that were damaged by power surges. Air cooled generators are tools that many home owners have implemented in order to save themselves from these inconveniences.
Generac is synonymous with generators. They offer the largest air cooled kW range in the market. The smallest Generac home standby unit is the off grid EcoGen 6kW. This model can be used in pair with battery backup in off grid situations, or as a home standby unit. Their PowerPact 7.5kW line is a money saving home standby compromise. It is a smaller unit, but it can provide enough power to back up your food and heat sources. The larger 8kw, 11kw, and 16kW models are the middle of the road choices. You can use these models to backup select circuits. The 16kW might even be large enough to power your whole house in select situations. The largest Generac models are the 20kW and 22kW models. These are whole home standby units and can be paired with a variety of transfer switches. The 22kW models 70432 and 70422 have revolutionized the way that people are powering their homes. These models offer the best cost per kW on the market. There is no doubt that Generac is a trusted provider of backup power.
Kohler Generators has provided backup power for almost 100 years. With such a familiar name, many home owners feel very comfortable trusting their generators in emergency situations. Kohler has a limited kW range compared to Generac. The Kohler 6kW series can provide power as a home standby unit, but are intended to solely be off gird generators. The next size up would be the Kohler 8kW followed by the 8.5kW. Kohler also offers a 12kW model, the 12RESVL-100LC12. The 8kW and 12kW Kohler models are new additions to their line this year. The final two sizes you will find are the 14kW and the 20kW. These two models can be packaged alone or with transfer switches. Because of the wide variety of options for each kW rating, Kohler has recommended you contact our office for more information on each model. If you have an account with us, you can login and request authorization to view these products online.
Briggs and Stratton is a formidable name in the engine market. You can find a Briggs engine in almost every piece of equipment from lawnmowers to generators. For some time, Generac actually used the Briggs and Stratton engine in their generators. Briggs is the only manufacturer with a 10kW generator option. You can also find their models in 8, 12, 16 and 20kWs. Their transfer switch technology is more comprehensive than you can find in Kohler or Generac. The switches are designed to take full control over your power instead of load shedding the larger draw items. The exhaust system is also designed to work back to front as opposed to other brands which work right to left.
Cummins Generators probably gained their popularity due to their RV generators. Cummins is actually one of the only manufacturers of RV generators. These generators are special order because of the amount of customization you can choose. You might have to wait 4-6 weeks for the shipment, but the quality and reliability is worth it. Cummins air cooled generators are available in 13 and 20kW sizes only. Cummins is the only manufacturer who offers a 13kW air cooled model that isn't fueled by diesel.
Off Grid Generators are made to be paired with battery backup power. You can use an off gird generator with any kind of primary power source whether it is batter or solar power. When you pair this generator with battery backup, the unit acts as an inverter to make sure the batteries never die. That's not the same situation as some installations that require "prime power". Some air cooled models can be modified to work in off grid situations, but, this will void the manufacturers warranty leaving your unit unprotected. We strongly encourage anyone considering an off grid generator to speak with someone in our office, or with a licensed electrician to insure you are using the generator in the correct application.
Generators need to be mounted in pea gravel and cement. Generac and Kohler both offer pre-poured, cut and drilled concrete pads to simplify the installation process. These pads are offered in 3' or 4' selections. Cummins units do not require a concrete pad because it is already built into the unit's enclosure. You can save money on these pads by buying them with your generator. We also have many starter kits for Kohler and Generac that include the concrete pads, warning stickers and maintenance kits.