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Kilowatt Heating, Air Conditioning and Electrical Blog

Summer Power Outages and Whole-House Generators


When you think of backup generators for homes, do you usually imagine houses on the East Coast during frigid winters or when enormous storms and hurricanes strike? Unfortunately, here in Southern California, we have some pretty good reasons to have generators installed for our homes as well.

Last summer, Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley experienced extreme heat levels and a record-breaking demand for electricity. Homes use more electrical power than ever before, and when this was combined with the heat, it resulted in multiple power outages that lasted for hours and sometimes longer.

We can expect similar conditions this summer. The Los Angeles County Department of Water and Power is even setting up an alert system to report outages as they happen and deliver estimates on when power may be restored.

If your power goes out, there’s not much you can do except sweat it out and hope the DWP estimate is correct … unless you have a whole-house generator.

The Whole-House Generator in Action

A whole-house generator is different than the portable generators people often use in their cars or take camping. Smaller generators can’t effectively handle even the simplest power demands of a house. During the summer, a home should at least have enough electrical power to run the HVAC system to keep the building cool and provide energy to any life-saving medical equipment for people in the household. Portable generators can’t take on this burden, at least not reliably. And reliability is critical to have the peace of mind that a generator is supposed to provide!

A whole-house generator is wired directly into the electrical system of a home. When the generator turns on, it cuts the house off the from the electrical grid and takes over delivering electricity. Generators can run from a range of fuel sources, although the most popular is natural gas because it’s inexpensive and piped directly to the house.

Whole-house generators also come in automatic models. These generators will activate on their own whenever there’s a power outage. This is useful in situations where nobody is home who can turn on the generator in an emergency.


Finally, we need to bring up earthquakes. We’re sure these have been on your mind recently because of the large Ridgecrest quakes during the first week of July. Earthquakes can cause large power outages due to downed lines and other service interruptions. However, earthquakes can also lead to gas line shut-offs, which is a problem for natural gas-powered generators. If you’re interested in a whole-house generator to help in case of an earthquake, you have other options for fuel, such as using liquid propane or diesel.

For whole-house generator installation in North Hollywood, CA or elsewhere in our wide service area, simply call our team. We will help you with selecting the right unit to meet your power needs and keep your family safe and happy.

Kilowatt Heating, Air Conditioning, and Electrical serves Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. Call our certified service technicians 24/7 for exceptional customer service!

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