One way to cope with the impact of hurricanes, tropical storms, and other severe weather, of course, is to invest in a whole house propane generator. But a backup generator only helps if your family and your equipment are ready to respond quickly and decisively when severe weather is forecast.
To make sure you’re prepared the next time Mother Nature unleashes her fury, it pays to take a few minutes to develop a severe weather Generator Readiness Plan. Here are some items to include:
Review your generator’s operating manual – Don’t wait for the moment of truth to learn how your generator works.
Run your system – If your generator has been sitting idle since winter, run it for a full half hour to make sure everything is in working order. Run it for 10 minutes in subsequent months before scheduling maintenance in advance of the winter storm season.
Fill your generator’s propane tank – Your propane generator should have enough propane gas stored to run your generator for a full week in the event of road closures. If it isn’t, schedule a propane delivery as early as possible.
Prepare a “Plan B” – Know what you will do if your generator does not start.
During a severe weather event
Keep access to your generator clear – Try to keep a pathway clear of debris, and keep its gas line accessible for refueling.
Listen to your local authorities and evacuate if you need to. If you do vacate the premises, use extreme caution when returning to your property.
Monitor and document generator operation – Keep track of how often and for how long your generator is called into service, along with any problems or repairs that may occur.
Post- storm event
Check all existing equipment – Make sure all your home comfort equipment operates correctly; if you experience any problems, have them checked out by a professional immediately.
Have your system maintained – Severe weather can strike any time of the year – especially in the summer and winter. Be sure your system is ready when it’s called upon!
Review /revise your Readiness Plan – After the storm, and again when summer ends, assess what worked and didn’t work in your plan, making changes as needed.