Wisconsin's #1 choice for back up power!

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of generator do I need?

It will depend on what you need to power and where you are. If you are looking for some temporary power for a campsite, hunting shack, or garage then portable solutions from Generac will be just what you need. If you are looking to power your home or business in the event of a power outage then an automatic backup power solution from Generac or Kohler will be correct. If you are looking for a generator for your construction site, sand mine, or other location where you need rugged dependable power then a Kubota diesel generator would be perfect.

How do I go about getting a generator for my home/business?

Give us a call and we will schedule a technician to come out and discuss options with you on what kind and size generator you will need, the best placement of the generator to access the gas and electric utilities, where the electrical transfer switch will be located, the capacity of your current gas delivery system and whether the meter, regulator, and/or gas piping needs to be upgraded, and how many electrical items you want to work when the power goes out other than the necessities such as furnace, sump pump, and refrigerator/freezer.

Do you carry generators for Green Energy applications?

Both Generac and Kohler make generators for wind, solar power, and off-grid applications for when there just isn't enough electricity being generated by mother nature, these units can charge the batteries to get you by.

Is the generator loud?

Generators are powered by an internal combustion engine so they do generate some vibration and noise but these are greatly deadened by the enclosure that the generators come in. Portable generators run with barely an audible whisper while automatic backup generators will only be heard as a slight hum inside the home or building.

How long does it take to have a generator installed?

The process will depend on several factors including:

  • Is the generator in stock or readily available?
    Some units are in higher demand that others and can run in short supply especially if there is a natural disaster such as a hurricane or tornado that causes accelerated buying among the general public and low inventory.
  • Does my gas service need to be upgraded?
    Sometimes the gas meter, gas regulator, and gas pipe sizing needs to be upgraded before the generator is installed adding several weeks to the timeline.
  • How accessible are the utilities?
    If the gas line needs to be trenched a long distance or more wire needs to be pulled to tie the transfer switch into the electrical service then it can add time to the project.
  • What time of year is it?
    If the ground is frozen then we will have to wait until spring to trench in any utilities, perform any landscaping, or pour a concrete pad if it is a larger unit.
  • The short answer is that a generator project can typically be finished from signed contract and deposit received to generator installed and up and running in approximately 2-4 weeks depending on the variables. Our staff will be able to give you a much more detailed timeline once we understand the details and your needs.

What is better; a portable generator or a standby generator?

It will greatly depend on how you plan to use your generator. A standby generator will automatically turn on by itself when it detects a loss of power. If you travel and the safety of your home and your family rely on their being power then a standby generator is the only way to go. If you want to option of taking your generator with you to the shop, the farm, or camping, and you are adept at connecting cables then a portable generator will certainly be a flexible option for you.

Can I run my house on a portable generator?

In general portable generators are smaller in sized compared to a full standby generator. With these smaller generators you will need to decide what fixtures and appliances are important to you in case of a power failure and have these wired to work with the transfer switch and load center that would also need to be installed as a part of your wiring for your home.

How much room do I need outside for my generator?

Most standby generators are about the size of a central air conditioning unit. But standby generators will need a minimum of 5 feet of clearance out the back of the unit for the hot exhaust. If landscaping, sidewalks, animal pens, or other delicate items are placed closer than 5 feet then they risk being damaged or destroyed. Otherwise generators will need 3 feet of clearance on the other three sides to be able to access the unit for its routine maintenance and any other service needs throughout the lifetime of the unit.

What maintenance does a generator need?

At a minimum a generator will need to have it's oil, air filter, and spark plugs replaced once a year. If you experience an extended power outage then it is best to replace these items once power is restored so the next time you need the generator it is ready to use.

What is included with the generator?

For most applications the generator itself is just the starting point. You will most likely also need a transfer switch, a starting battery, a pad to set the generator on which can be concrete or a formed area or landscaping rock, an electrician to change over the wiring, add the transfer switch, add the service disconnect if needed, a plumber to extend the gas line to the generator, a gas regulator if needed, miscellaneous plumbing supplies to connect the gas line to the generator itself, a technician to install the generator, start up the unit, and program it for its exercise cycle.

What other costs may I experience with my generator installation?

Depending on your specific installation you may also have special permits that need to be obtained, landscaping that needs to be changed, removed, or modified, delivery and installation costs for setting the unit if the access to the site is difficult, costs to change out or modify your gas supply system including a new tank, new regulator, new gas meter, or fees to the gas public service to even determine if you need an upgrade, a site plan for state approval, etc. Every installation can have its own set of variables that need to be analyzed by our technicians to be certain what all may be involved.