Does a Standby Generator Increase Home Value?

If you’re a homeowner thinking about purchasing a generator, you may be wondering whether your investment will pay off when the time comes to sell your home. Not to mention there are a lot of conflicting messages online about the value a generator can provide to your home. Some examples include “Standby generators will increase the value of your home tenfold!”, and “No, a standby generator is not a consideration in the buying process!”

This disparity leaves many people feeling caught in the middle. So what is the truth: does a generator increase home value or not?

Does a Standby Generator Increase Home Value?

The short answer: Yes. But maybe not as much as you’d hoped.

The long answer: The return you get on your generator will depend on two factors: your home’s location and the likelihood of a power outage. If you live in an area with frequent storms and outages (like New England) buyers will be more willing to pay for the peace of mind that comes with a generator. Conversely, if you can’t remember the last time a big storm hit, then a generator may not be as appealing for the buyer.

Similarly, think about your area’s power grid. Do you have overhead lines? These are far more likely to lose power than underground ones. Do you experience frequent outages even without severe storms? Then a generator is a must! Of course, even a home that is connected to a strong grid with underground power lines will experience outages from time to time. Under these conditions, a generator may be perceived as a “nice to have” feature for a home buyer.

Overall, the return on a generator investment tends to be between 56 and 84 percent. While the investment will increase your home’s value, you’re not likely to make a significant return on what you spent buying and installing the generator.

The Real Value: Peace of Mind

If you’re solely interested in increasing the value of your home, then you’re probably wondering whether it’s worth the effort. But it’s important to note that most homeowners don’t buy a generator simply as an investment—standby generators come with the guarantee that you’ll never be left in the dark.

Extended outages are common throughout New England. In fact, it’s rare to go through a blizzard or a thunderstorm without some homes losing their power. And going without power for days at a time comes with costly risks: burst pipes in the winter, spoiled food year-round—not to mention you can’t watch your favorite shows or enjoy the comfort of air conditioning!

With a standby generator, you’ll be free from worry. Your generator will automatically switch on in the event of an outage, meaning you’ll enjoy the comforts of electricity even as your neighbors sit in the dark. The best part? Your generator will switch on even if you’re not home, so you can take peace of mind with you when you’re on vacation or when you’re at the grocery store!

Whether you purchase a standby generator for your personal benefit or in the hopes of increasing your property’s value, there’s no denying that they are an excellent addition to any home. Are you ready to give your home the benefit of reliable backup power 24/7? Contact us today. One of our qualified Kohler generator technicians would be happy to speak to you about all of our home generator options.

Do I Need a Standby Generator? Things to Consider

Here in New England, we’re no strangers to power outages. From heavy snow and damaging ice storms in the winter (and fall… and spring!) to summer thunderstorms accompanied by lightning and torrential rain, we’ve seen it all. And for some homeowners, this is worrying! Maybe you did okay during the last power outage, but do you really want to go through that again? You may find yourself wondering whether a generator is the right option.

Do You Need a Generator?

It may seem unnecessary, but your first step should be to assess whether you really need a generator to begin with.

Some New Englanders pride themselves on surviving power outages. The stories of long outages begin to sound like fisherman’s tales: “I went without power for two weeks back in ‘08!”

But others aren’t so keen on the idea of being left in the dark. This may include elderly homeowners or those with special needs who really can’t afford to be without power, but it also includes those homeowners who just enjoy the comforts of a home with electricity!

Consider your personal needs when deciding whether or not you need a generator. If you don’t mind extended outages from time to time, a generator may not be in your best interest, but if the idea of another outage is less than exciting for you, it’s time to think about purchasing one.

What Type of Generator is Right for You?

Despite the frequency of hard-hitting storms in the area, it seems that right before each new storm hits, New Englanders make their way to their local hardware stores en masse, snatching every last generator off the shelves in frenzied last-minute preparation.

Think about this; if you grab the last generator left in the store, what are the chances it’s going to meet all of your requirements? Will it be the right voltage to power everything you need to run during an outage? Will it be the right brand? The right price? Probably not!

This is why it’s important to do some thinking in advance. What type of generator is really right for you? There are two main types of generator: standby and portable. Each type has its own advantages, and the type you choose will depend on your unique needs. However, we recommend standby generators over portable ones because of a few key advantages.

Do I Need a Standby Generator?

As you decide whether or not a standby generator is the right choice for your home, consider these points.

What Do You Need to Power?

Generators come in many different sizes, and the size you’ll need will depend on what devices you plan to keep running during an outage. If you only want to run a few appliances, such as your refrigerator, you may not need a standby generator. But if you want to run multiple appliances, keep the lights on, run your air conditioner, and watch television, a standby generator will be your best option. They are much more powerful and can handle power more devices – making your home more comfortable during extended outages.

The Power of Convenience and Reliability

Picture this: the next time there’s a big storm, your electricity goes out. What do you do?

If you have a portable generator, you’ll go to your garage or shed and drag your generator out of storage. You’ll trudge through rain or snow until you find the ideal place to put your generator, and then you’ll get it running. Did you remember to buy fuel for it? When was the last time it was run?

If you have a standby generator, your power goes out. Your generator – constantly monitoring your electricity – turns on, and you have backup power.

Which one sounds easier? Standby generators come with peace of mind you can’t get from a portable generator. You don’t have to do anything to get it running – and it will turn on even if you’re not home! You’ll never have to worry about coming home from vacation to burst pipes and a fridge full of spoiled food.


For many homeowners, the cost of a standby generator is the one thing standing in the way of purchasing one. While it is true that standby generators come at a higher cost than portable ones, the convenience and ability to power more appliances throughout the home is well worth the higher price tag.

Take the Next Step

Is a standby generator the right solution for your home? If you’re interested in installing a home generator, contact us today. One of our qualified technicians would be happy to help you select the generator that’s right for your home.

Can A Home Generator Run an Air Conditioner?

A standby home generator is a good option for powering your air conditioner, but be sure to do your research first. There are a lot of different types of generators, and you shouldn’t try to power your AC if your generator isn’t powerful enough to handle the load.

Can A Home Generator Run an Air Conditioner?

Summer in New England can often mean big storms, and with storms come power outages. While it may be a relief to know that your pipes aren’t going to freeze during one of these summer outages, you may find yourself uncomfortable without your air conditioner. So should you take the chance and run it off of your generator? Keep in mind that there are a few factors that will influence whether or not it will work.

The Wattage of Your Generator

The first thing that you should note is the size of your generator – that is, how much it is capable of powering at one time. Electric power is measured in watts, and standby generators are rated in kilowatts (kW). While a small generator may support about 3,000-4,000 watts at a time, a large standby generator can support 10kW to 15kW! This is a big range, so if you don’t know what size generator you have, find that out before you do anything.

The Needs of Your Air Conditioner

Just as there’s no one size fits all generator, there’s a lot of variation in the sizing and wattage of different air conditioning units. Are you looking to power one or two window units or a 3-ton central air system? There is a big difference in the power required to run these different ACs.

It’s also important to know that your air conditioner doesn’t use the same amount of power all the time – it takes much more energy to start your AC than it does to keep it running. Your generator must be powerful enough to meet these startup demands, or you won’t be able to use your AC.

Every air conditioner is different, but Kohler estimates that a typical window unit will take about 5100 watts to start and will run at around 1700 watts. Meanwhile, central air conditioners tend to run at about 3500 watts – and their startup wattage can often be thousands of watts higher than that! You can buy a hard start kit to reduce the impact of startup, but it’s always best to consult a professional.

The best way to know your power needs is to check for yourself. Take a look at your air conditioning unit – it should list the startup and running wattage on it. This is the only way to know for sure what your unique AC’s power needs are.

Don’t Forget the Rest

One last thing before you turn on your AC! Your generator may be strong enough to power your air conditioner, but is your AC the only thing plugged in? If you’re powering other appliances, your lights, or your TV, you don’t want the cumulative power needs to exceed what your generator can provide.

If you haven’t already, check the wattage of everything you want to power at once and add it up. Don’t forget to factor in those high startup wattages! Now does your generator still meet your power needs? Go ahead and enjoy that AC! But if it doesn’t, you’re going to have to decide what’s most important. Can you leave the TV off for a while to run the AC?

The Right Generator

Every home has unique power needs. Are you looking for a generator powerful enough to keep you comfortable during outages all year long? Contact Standby Generators today – one of our experienced generator technicians will be happy to help you find the right generator for your needs.

How Long Will a Standby Generator Last?

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.

How Often Should a Standby Generator Be Serviced?

A home generator is a big investment, so you want your generator to keep running for as long as possible. What’s the secret to a longer life? Maintenance and service! A well-maintained generator can last as long as 30 years, but one that isn’t regularly serviced will certainly run into problems well before then. If you want to make the most of your generator investment, start with regular standby generator maintenance. Power Products specializes in Kohler generators, so we will be using those as a reference point, but these maintenance tips can apply to all generator brands.

First: Read the Manual

All generators need to be serviced regularly, and they all have similar needs. However, not all generators are the same. Your specific model may need more frequent service or have specific needs that other models do not have. Make sure that you are familiar with your generator so that there are no surprises later.

Factors Affecting Standby Generator Service Frequency

Every standby generator should be run weekly for half an hour. This exercises the generator and ensures that it is ready to switch on in the event of a power outage. If you’re lucky, this weekly exercise is the only time throughout the year that your generator will need to switch on. However, we know that in New England that is often not the case.

If you experience frequent or lengthy power outages, your generator may be running for hundreds of hours per year. This type of heavy use puts a strain on your machine, so it may need more frequent service.

You should also consider your generator’s environment. Standby generators sit outside your home, so if your environment is particularly cold, hot, dusty, or otherwise difficult for your generator to manage, you may need to have it serviced more often.

Monthly Maintenance

There’s no need to have a professional technician come out to see your generator every month, but you also shouldn’t be ignoring your generator throughout the year. Once a month, you should perform some basic maintenance tasks, including:

  • Visual inspection. Look at the wire connections and clamps to make sure nothing has come loose. If you have a gas powered generator, check its piping for damage or leaks. Make sure that the generator and the area around it is clean. This may include clearing away snow during the winter months.
  • Check oil level. Between oil changes, check that your machine has enough oil. You may need to add some. Be sure to perform this check when the generator is off so that you can accurately measure your oil level.
  • Check coolant level. Take a look at the overflow tank. You may need to add some coolant.
  • Check fuel (for diesel generators). Be sure to add fuel when you’re running low. You don’t want to find out during a power outage that you’re running on empty.

Schedule Service with a Kohler Technician

There are basic maintenance tasks that you can perform yourself, but to ensure a long life for your generator you should schedule standby generator service with a qualified technician. Typically, this is done yearly, but keep in mind how often your generator runs and your specific generator model; you may need to schedule maintenance more often.

During these scheduled visits, your technician will perform maintenance tasks such as:

  • Changing your oil and filter. Just as a car cannot keep running on old oil, your generator’s oil needs to be drained and replaced.
  • Replacing air and fuel filters. Your air filter keeps dust and debris from clogging up your engine, so it’s important to have a clean one installed.
  • Changing spark plugs. Spark plugs get worn out by frequent use. Your technician can install new ones to ensure your engine will keep running to the best of its ability.
  • Other services. Your technician will perform a thorough inspection of your entire generator. If your generator has been damaged or parts are worn out, it may require additional service.

The Importance of Standby Generator Service

Just like your car, your generator needs regular service in order to function effectively. You can do many of the simpler maintenance tasks yourself, but it is essential that you have a professional service your generator at least once a year. Want to make sure that your generator stays in tip-top shape? Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our certified Kohler technicians.

Will My Home Generator Run in the Snow?

Have you invested in a generator for your New England home? Are you considering one? Many homeowners in the area know that unpredictable weather and harsh storms mean they can lose power at any moment – especially in the winter. Snow and ice have a habit of ruining even the best-laid plans. Can you count on a home generator to run in the snow?

Will Your Home Generator Run in the Snow?

Winter in New England is no joke. Every year, the area is hit by heavy snow and ice storms which can be powerful enough to down trees and power lines. This is often the harshest season of the year, and for that reason, it is the most common season for power outages. It should come as no surprise that Kohler generators are built tough; your generator needs to withstand ice, snow, and frigid conditions so you always have power when you need it. However, it is important to properly maintain your generator, especially in harsh winter weather, or you will run into problems.

How to Properly Maintain Your Generator in the Winter

There are a few actions you can take to ensure your generator will be up for the challenge when the snow starts to fall.

  • Clear snow from the intake and vents. The air intake is there for one reason: to take in air. When the air intake is clear, the generator can operate efficiently and cool the engine. However, if your generator is covered in snow, the intake cannot do its job, which may cause your engine to overheat and your generator to fail. To ensure this doesn’t happen, periodically clear snow and ice from your generator. During particularly heavy storms, this may mean doing the job a few times a day.
  • Make a path. If you’re going to be cleaning off your generator, make it easier for yourself by clearing a path from your house to your generator. You don’t want to find yourself trudging through several feet of snow just to clear your generator. Additionally, having a path clear ensures easy access if you do need emergency generator maintenance.
  • Take care of it all year long. All generators need to be properly maintained throughout the year to ensure top performance when you need it. Don’t ignore your generator through the spring, summer, and fall just because the weather is nice! You should be running your generator for 10-30 minutes at least once a month – and during the cold months, be sure to run it for about 10 minutes a week. Frequent exercise keeps your generator in peak condition, ensures it will function as it should when you lose power and will extend the lifespan of your machine. In addition to periodically running your generator, you should also have yearly maintenance performed by a professional.

Don’t Get Left Out in the Cold

Winters in New England can be brutal, but with the right generator and proper maintenance, you never have to face another storm without power. Are you considering purchasing a generator for your home? Contact one of our certified technicians today; we can help you select and maintain the generator that fits your needs at home.

How Much Does a Whole Home Generator Cost?

If you’ve been considering getting a generator for your home, you know there’s a wide range of options out there. From portable generators to large whole house generators, there is a generator out there to fit every home’s unique needs. If you’ve spent some time weighing your options and decided that a standby generator is the way to go, you may be wondering about the cost of a whole home generator. PowerProducts specializes in Kohler brand generators, so we will talk specifically about Kohler, but these same considerations apply to all brands of generators.

Benefits of a Standby Generator

Standby generators are permanently installed outside your home and connected to your home’s energy source. Because they are constantly monitoring your power, they are able to quickly and automatically switch on when there is a problem. A whole house generator is powerful enough to keep your lights on and appliances running throughout your home. You’ll never have to worry about going days or weeks without power due to a severe storm, and because they’re automatic you don’t even have to be home to ensure your generator switches on. Having a standby generator ensures ease of mind, but that convenience often comes with a high price tag. Keep in mind that the confidence that comes with a reliable generator is worth the cost.

Cost of a Whole Home Generator

Because there is such a wide variety of generators, there are a lot of factors that will determine how much your ideal generator will cost. Your generator needs will not be the same as your neighbors’, so the cost of a generator will vary. These are some of the most important factors to consider.

  • Size of house. A large house with lots of rooms and appliances to power is going to need a bigger generator than a small home. When shopping for a generator, it’s very helpful to know your home’s square footage – it will help you to better gage your energy needs.
  • Power needs. Are you looking for a generator that will power your lights and refrigerator for a few hours, or one that can power your whole home, including all of your appliances? The more power you’ll need, the bigger your generator will have to be, and that will have an effect on the cost. For an idea of what size generator you’ll need, try out Kohler’s Generator Selector.
  • Installation. Once you’ve selected and purchased your unit, you’ll still need to get it installed. If you go through a certified Kohler dealer, they will install the generator, including hooking it up to your gas and electricity. Otherwise, you will have to hire a licensed electrician and gas piper. This is not a do-it-yourself project, so there will be costs associated with installation.

So, how much does a whole home generator cost? While it’s impossible to know for sure without discussing your power needs with a trusted dealer, doing your research ahead of time will help you to determine the range that you can expect. The Kohler Generators product page will show that a small 8 kilowatt generator has a starting price around $2,500, but a much larger 38 kilowatt generator starts at just over $14,000. The best way to know for sure how much a whole home generator will cost you is to reach out to a trusted generator dealer. Contact one of our certified technicians today to get your free quote and be prepared for the next power outage.

How to Choose the Right Generator Size

The cold weather is here, and with it you can expect snow, ice, and the occasional power outage. Are you prepared for the lights to go out? If it’s time to consider purchasing a generator, it’s important to select the right type and size for your home. But with so many generators out there, how do you go about choosing a generator size?

Assess Watt You Need

It all depends on what you need the generator for. If you just need the essentials, like keeping your refrigerator and lights on, you will not need a generator built to run air conditioners and appliances for several days straight.

When considering your generator needs, start by making a list of everything you will want to power during an outage and its wattage. Examples include a refrigerator (about 600 watts), computer (250 watts), television (200 watts), or washer (350-500 watts) and dryer (1800-5000 watts). Remember that some appliances, such as your refrigerator, require more wattage during certain times in their cycles. You should also take your heating system into account. Gas and electric systems will use different wattages, so take the time to consider your unique needs. If you’re having trouble assessing your energy needs, consult an electrician.

Choosing a Generator Size

Once you know what you’ll need to power, you’ll have a better idea of how much energy your generator will need to provide. Different sized generators offer different wattages, and standby generators can power more than portable generators, so be sure to select a generator that is capable of handling your power needs. A small portable generator can support 3,000 to 4,000 watts, while a large standby generator can support 10,000 to 15,000 watts. Carefully consider whether you may need the generator to power more in the future. You may feel that a small generator can power everything you need now, but somewhere down the line you may need more power (and a new generator).

Be Prepared

The most important thing when thinking about buying a generator? Don’t wait until you need one. When the power goes out, you want to stay in your home and enjoy your generator, not run to the store to purchase one. In an emergency situation, options will be extremely limited, and you will not have the luxury of selecting the right generator for your home. Prepare now: assess your energy needs, select a generator, and have it installed before there is a problem.

Choosing Between Standby and Portable Generators

As winter storms fast approach, do you have a plan for when your home loses power? As most New England homeowners know, a storm can strike at any time and loss of power can affect your home for days or even weeks. A generator is the best way to protect your home during these winter months. There are two kinds of generators: portable and standby. What is the difference, and which type is better for your home?

What’s the difference?

Portable generators are designed to be set up and used when the need arises. Because they are not permanently installed, they can be stored in a garage or basement until they are needed. When the power goes out, they need to be taken out of storage, set up, and fueled. They are powered by a fuel such as propane, which must be stored separately from the generator and added only when it is ready to be used. They can typically be used to power the basics, such as your lights, refrigerator, and heating system, and they require very little maintenance. However, they also give off high levels of carbon monoxide when in use, which means that safety precautions must be taken to ensure the gas is not inhaled.

Standby generators are professionally installed as permanent fixtures outside of the home. They are connected to your home’s energy source and constantly monitor your power. When a problem is detected, standby generators automatically switch on, so you’ll only be left without power for a few seconds. They can be used to power the basics, as well as your water tank, furnace, and other appliances, though depending on their size you may need to turn some appliances off in order to use others. Standby generators must be run for about 15 minutes every week to determine whether or not additional maintenance is needed, so it is often beneficial to work with a generator company to perform services as needed.

Advantages of Standby Generators

Though portable generators cost less and require less maintenance, standby generators are the best option for powering your home. Because they are always monitoring your power, you don’t have to worry about switching them on when there is a problem. Conversely, if you are not home to turn on a portable generator when the power goes out, you run the risk of your pipes bursting or food spoiling while you’re gone. Even if you are home when a problem comes up, you will have to go through the effort of setting a portable generator up outside and turning it on, which may be easier said than done during a big storm. Standby generators are typically more powerful than portable generators; while you may not be able to power everything in your home at once, you will have more flexibility to use the appliances you need.

If you want a worry-free way to ensure your lights stay on this winter, a standby generator is your best option. Don’t get left in the cold during harsh storms. Make sure your home is prepared by installing a generator before you’re left without power.