A Kohler standby home generator will keep your home running when the power goes out. They are incredibly convenient and often essential although the cost makes the decision . When being without power is not an option, how do you decide which standby generator your home needs? As a Kohler Dealer, we are frequently asked about how to select the right standby generator. Here are some of the questions we are asked most often to help you get started:
Why Choose a Kohler Standby Home Generator?
Kohler Generators offer a 3-year parts & labour warranty (with an additional 2-year parts warranty) beginning on the day we install and test your new generator. Kohler is a family owned company that manufactures their generators domestically in Kentucky, USA. They have a comprehensive testing process that ensures every generator and its components had been tested and examined for quality and operation. In addition, we find them to be most reliable and user friendly in comparison with other brands we have worked with over the years!
What Size of Generator Do I Need?
Do you want it to run your entire house or just a few essential loads? This will determine the size (and price) of the generator required. All the Kohler standby home generator models, regardless of size, are fully automatic. This means a transfer switch is installed to switch the main electrical panel’s power over to the generator in case of power outage. Therefore, your decision mainly comes down 2 options based on what you’ll need powered in an outage:
Whole Home Standby Generator
The transfer switch will transfer power from your entire electrical system to the generator with a whole home generator. All lights, outlets, appliances and electronics will function as normal. In other words, there is no interruption to daily life.
Essential Systems Standby Generator
A separate ‘generator’ panel is installed containing your property’s essential loads. Only these important loads will be transferred to the generator in a power outage. These loads usually include the furnace, a couple kitchen circuits, bathroom lighting, well pumps and other essentials. Not powering absolutely everything in your home will reduce the load on the generator., and as a result, will reduce the size and price of the generator required.
This type of system will provide your family and your property the essential services they need while keeping costs down.
The panel on the right is the main panel, the transfer switch is in the center and the left panel is for essential loads only.
Exquisite Electric will work with you by analyzing your home’s electrical load to ensure you can confidently choose the Kohler standby home generator that is right for your power needs and right for your budget. For more information on how standby automatic home generators work, please visit our generators page.
Is a Generator a Cheaper Alternative to Electricity?
Going ‘Off-grid’ and using a backup generator to power a whole house seems like a tempting idea due to rising electricity prices. On the contrary, the cost of the gas it would burn far outweighs the cost of the electricity required for the same amount of power use. Your Kohler generator should be treated as standby power for emergency situations. It is meant to provide power and heat for your home and power to essential rural equipment such as well pumps, septic systems and stock waterers until the outage is over. Purchasing electricity from traditional energy service providers is a cheaper alternative than 100% generator use at this point in time.
Additional Generator Equipment Needed
The heater accessories do not come factory installed with Kohler standby home generators. However, in our colder Canadian climate we highly recommended their installation in a generator. Heating accessories are not standard because Kohler Generators are manufactured in the USA where many areas have climates that do not require them. Likewise, we also recommend adding a battery warmer, oil pan heater and carburetor heater to your generator. This will keep these vital parts warm enough to start up without issue throughout the cold winter months. In addition, a regulator heater is also recommended when installing a propane-fueled model (as opposed to a natural gas-fueled generator).
How Do Kohler Standby Home Generators work with Solar Power and Off-Grid Systems?
Kohler standby home generators work really well in tandem with solar systems. As a matter of fact, a generator will nicely offset down times in solar systems for off-grid power systems. Daylight hours are significantly reduced and energy demands are higher during a stretches of very cloudy days or in the winter. Correspondingly, solar panels are not likely to store enough to meet household needs due to insufficient input during these conditions. At this point a backup generator will switch on to make up the difference and provide the required power.
Additional Requirements To Consider When Installing a Standby Generator
There may be additional costs associated with installing your new generator. For example, you will need to consider code requirements, municipal bylaws, permit costs and inspections. Also, you may need to hire additional trades to hook up fuel lines and pour concrete bases, if required. There are a lot of factors to think about but we can help! The experts at Exquisite Electric know all the provincial codes and local bylaws and we’ll obtain the proper permits on your behalf. We will also take care of subcontracting trusted local trades as needed for the other areas of the installation. All costs will be presented up front before any work is undertaken. You won’t have to worry about coordinating services and you will know the job will be done right.
Exquisite Electric is the Calgary area’s Authorized Kohler Dealer and Service Provider. We’ll help you choose the right generator, take care of all the installation factors for you and keep it running smoothly with yearly maintenance. Give us a call at 587-333-3373 or use our online form to request more information.
October 30, 2018