Well, we’ve made the move: we’ve ordered a diesel powered stand-by generator to be installed behind the house. The contractor will come next week to pour the concrete pad upon which it will rest. We plan to post pictures of the installation and final beautification of the thing as it is happening.
There are several reasons we have decided to make this substantial investment. And I do mean I think it will be an investment. Power outages were rare several years ago in our area, but seem to be becoming increasingly frequent. We might as well prepare for ourselves as we try to age in place and for whomever will receive stewardship of this place when we pass away.
1. I’m tired of being without water when we have a power outage
We are on a well and our well pump runs on electricity. No power, no water. Okay, we can drink bottled water, but what about taking a shower? In the heat of this summer’s outage, we visited friends about five times to use their shower.
2. I’m tired of being without a toilet when we have a power outage
See above. When we have no water, our toilets don’t fill up after a flush. We stopped up two toilets during the last power outage. We now keep a few gallons of water in plastic gallon jugs near the toilets in case we lose water, but…
3. I’m tired of throwing all the food in the freezer out because power was out too long
The food in the freezer will last a day or maybe 2, after that, stuff defrosts. Last time we lost power, we called friends about 50 miles away who still had power to come get the food in our freezer before it was lost. I am really against throwing food away, but what if we had not found friends who could take the food? We could only cook so much and save it in an ice chest. Last year we lost everything in the refrigerator and freezer. It was wasteful and unnecessary if we had had a generator.
4. I’m tired of roasting in the heat or freezing in the cold when we have a power outage
We have oil heat that requires an electric blower to move the heat into our home’s rooms. So no power, no heat. DH has had to bring in wood to burn in a basement fireplace stove to provide enough heat during the winter during power outages. He is getting older, and a few fires is a nice touch, but hauling wood shouldn’t be a twice daily necessity for him.
5. We have a pup, so it is more difficult to find lodgings when there is a power outage
Thankfully, pet friendly hotels are becoming more prevalent, but requiring a place where we can all stay does rule out the majority of hotels. Hotels really fill up fast when there is a power outage. As we get older, it becomes more imperative (or at least more convenient) that we be able to stay at home when there is a power outage.
6. We both use CPAP’s and they don’t run on candles!
DH and I both have sleep apnea, and have continuous positive air pressure machines that we wear at night in bed. Hard to use when there is no electricity to pump air!