A standby home generator is a big investment: when you purchase a generator, you want to know that it will provide a lot of value. But how can you be sure your generator will be there for you when you need it? How long will a standby generator last during an extended power outage, and what is its overall lifespan?
How Long Will a Standby Generator Last in an Outage?
As long as your generator has fuel, you can expect it to run indefinitely during an outage. This will depend on the type of fuel that your generator uses. If you have a natural gas generator, fuel should not be a concern because the generator will be hooked up to your home’s gas line. But if you have a diesel or propane generator, fuel should be your top concern. Most generators are equipped with a 24 hour fuel tank, but larger tanks can be purchased if you want to store more. To ensure you don’t run out, you should keep in contact with a refueling service that can keep you stocked during an extended outage.
While your generator should be able to keep running during an extended outage, there are things you can do that help your generator to function better. Make sure it is clear of snow and debris, and do what you can to lighten its load. Too much stress will shorten your generator’s lifespan, so use it to power only the appliances and lights that you really need, and give it some time to rest by shutting it down periodically. This will give the engine a chance to cool, and it is a good time to check the oil level. Kohler recommends checking your oil every 8-24 hours of operation, so you may need to check it several times during an extended outage.
What is the Lifespan of a Standby Generator?
The overall lifespan will depend on the type and size of your generator, but a typical range is about 1500-3000 hours. You should be powering your generator on for about half an hour each week to exercise it, which means it will run for a minimum of 26 hours per year. Power outages, especially extended outages, will require running your generator for more time. Typically, standby generators have a lifespan of 20-40 years, depending on how often they run and how well they are maintained.
How to Extend the Life of Your Standby Generator
As with any engine, your generator will only have a long life if it is properly maintained and cared for. There are a few ways that you can extend your generator’s life. Be sure to exercise your generator weekly, perform routine maintenance, and schedule yearly service. Additionally, be wary of how long you run your generator during extended outages, and lighten its load if possible. When you take care of your standby generator, you can expect it to last for a long time.
Are you considering purchasing a long-lasting standby generator for your home? Do you already have a generator, and want to make sure it is properly maintained and cared for? Call one of our certified technicians today.