The decision to invest in a backup generator for your home or business is a big one. And, as with any major purchase, you want to know that your generator will last long enough to provide you with true value. In this blog, we answer a few common questions about the lifespan of a backup generator and what you can do to prolong that lifespan.
How long will a backup generator run continuously in a power outage?
Let’s start by talking about how long a generator will run during a power outage. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily speak to its entire longevity, but it does answer a more short-term questions of sustainability during a time of need.
In theory, a backup generator can run indefinitely, provided it has a fuel supply. Most residential generators run on either natural gas, propane, or diesel fuel. If your generator runs on natural gas, fuel isn’t really a concern, because its fuel source comes from your home’s gas line. However, if your generator uses propane or diesel fuel, you will need to keep an eye on the fuel supply.
Most generators have a fuel tank size designed to last 24 hours of use, but you can purchase a larger tank if you think you might need it. During an extended power outage, you may want to keep in contact with a refueling service that can provide you with additional fuel as needed.
In the event of an extended power outage, be sure to allow your generator to cool down periodically by simply turning it off for a few minutes. This will prevent overheating and will allow the generator to continue to serve you well throughout the power outage. You may choose to lessen the load on the generator by reducing the amount of electricity demanded. For example, you may choose to use the dishwasher only when it is completely full, instead of for smaller loads of dishes.
What is the lifespan of a backup generator?
Now, we’ll look at the more long-term question of backup generator lifespan overall. As with any engine, the lifespan of a backup generator will really depend on several factors. But, in general, a typical backup generator lifespan is about 20-40 years. This range will be impacted by factors such as how well it is maintained, how often it is exercised, and how many running hours it is used.
How can I extend the lifespan of a backup generator?
We already know that proper maintenance will help extend the lifespan of any engine, and a generator is no different. There are a few easy ways that you can extend your generator’s life.
First, be sure to allow your generator to exercise without a load regularly. (Most generators will automatically turn on to exercise a couple times per week.) This helps prevent wet stacking and moisture buildup.
Secondly, perform routine maintenance regularly. Changing the oil, checking oil lines, cleaning and testing the battery, and so on are important parts of keeping the generator running properly and for longer.
Finally, enrolling in a scheduled generator maintenance program will help ensure the longevity of your generator. Midwest Generator Solutions makes keeping your investment in tip-top shape easy with generator maintenance packages designed to suit your needs.
Still have questions?
Ready to make the investment into a backup generator? Still have a few questions? We’d love to help. Give us a call today!