Climate change is affecting all areas of the globe, and the UK is no exception. Unexpected storms are as likely to hit in the summer as they are during the winter. With storms come the high winds, trees coming down across power cables, sub-stations hit by lightning strikes, or being flooded by torrential rain. Businesses and homes face an increased risk of being hit by a power blackout at any time of the year, and these power outages can last from an hour to 12 hours, to days at a time in the worst case scenarios. While many of the UK’s hospitals, large businesses, and hotels have backup power installed as a matter of course, smaller industries, and many homeowners, are considering installing a backup generator. But how much do backup generators cost? Is it worth it? And what size do you need?
Working out the perfect backup generator for you
Modern backup generators are powered by propane gas, natural gas, or diesel, while smaller are usually home portable generators are powered by petrol. Specialist companies such as The Power Depot, based in Chesterfield Derbyshire, carry large stocks of new and used commercial diesel and gas generators in all sizes. They also hire, repair, and maintain generators from all manufacturers.
The size of your backup power supply will depend on what you need it to power. The higher the Kilowatt (KW) rating, the greater the power output, the more power your generator produces, the more appliances it can operate at the same time. So, a 2.8 kVA portable generator will produce 2,800 watts, while a 3.75kVA portable generator will produce 3,750 watts of power.
The average UK household uses over 10 kWh hours of power per day, while an average medium size UK business, can use between 80 and 140 kWh hours of power daily. For instance, in the average household;
- A two slice toaster uses around 1,000 watts
- A washing machine can use 1,200 watts
- A fridge can use 130-190 watts
- To boil a kettle around 1,800 watts.
While a small portable generator might be perfectly adequate for what the average household needs to power during a power blackout, for businesses it can be a whole different ball game.
Hotels, bed and breakfast establishments, restaurants and pubs have walk-in freezers, large fridge freezers, and commercial cooking ranges which have to be kept operating. Manufacturing plants and engineering companies need power for production lines and machinery. All this power needs to be calculated to ensure you obtain a generator of sufficient output for your needs.
Most small generators have a manual electric start, but larger models are wired directly to your incoming power. As soon as the electricity is interrupted, they kick in automatically, restoring power in seconds.
If you have suffered financial loss due to business interruption in the past, or you feel now is the time to consider installing a backup generator to minimise the risk of prolonged downtime, contact a specialist company such as The Power Depot. One of their electrical engineers will discuss your requirements, make onsite visits, and suggest the type and size of generator you need to ensure when all around you are plunged into darkness, your premises remains a shining light.
The question really isn’t how much do backup generators cost, the question is what you could lose by not having a backup generator.