One of the great benefits of living in the Pacific Northwest is the summer weather. Being this far north, we have long, sunny days, moderate daytime temperatures, mild nights and rarely have any severe weather.
But winter is another story. While our traditional winter weather is mostly grey skies and drizzle, typically at least once a year we have a major rain event with driving winds and flooding. And every couple of years, when the conditions are just right, we get hit with a real snow storm.
January of 2012 was one of those times. We received over 2 feet of heavy snow within 24 hours. "Snowmageddon," as we nicknamed it locally, caused city-wide power outages and literally trapped people in their homes for days. Some people in the outskirts of town lost power for over 2 weeks.
Predictions are that these types of weather events will become more frequent due to climate change and global warming, so it's wise to prepare your home for the long term.
Whole house generators are a solution to provide on-demand power during these weather events. When the power goes out, your home is instantaneously transferred to generator power, providing electricity to run all of your electric systems, including heaters, refrigerators and hot water heaters. When utility company power returns power is automatically transferred back to the grid.
Whole house generators typically run on either natural gas, provided by utility lines, or propane, stored in a tank on your property. While natural gas is less expensive and more efficient, it is not available everywhere, requires a costly hook-up from the utility company (if you do not already have one). Also, while natural gas typically is available during a power outage, it may not be during a natural disaster. Propane, while less efficient, is stored on your property, but you have a limited supply on hand and need to have additional propane delivered by truck. There are whole house generators that can use natural gas and also use propane as a backup, but these do tend to be more expensive. If you are considering a whole house generator, discuss fuel options with a qualified professional.
When you install a whole house generator, you will need licensed electrician to connect the generator to your home's electrical systems, and you will also need a gas line installer to connect the gas source to the generator.
M & M Plumbing is a qualified gas line installer. We work with the utility company and your electrician to connect your whole house generator to natural gas or propane.
A whole house generator is a significant investment in your home, but it can provide you with piece of mind during severe weather and power outages. Give us a call at M & M Plumbing. We'll be happy to discuss the best option for you. We'll refer you to a trusted whole house generator installer, and then work with them to install the gas lines to get your system up and running.