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Winter Tips for your Automatic or Portable Generator

 

Power outages can happen at any time of year.  They can be widespread or localized. You’ve made the investment in ensuring you have power during an outage with an automatic standby generator.

As an authorized Generac dealer and service provider here a few tips will keep your generator in good working order for the winter. A monthly check of these items goes a long way in preventative care.

Perform a visual inspection

Inspect the unit visually, looking for anything that’s out of place. Check the interior and exhaust for any debris that can interfere with the unit’s operation. Brush, leaves or mulch should be cleaned up.

Make a Path to Easily Access Your Standby Generator

Shovel or snow blow a path to your standby generator and keep it clear! in order to easily access and quickly troubleshoot during the winter. This also makes it easier for your local generator technician to perform any repairs, maintenance, or emergency service!

Check  the oil

A standby generator is, essentially, a fuel-powered engine, similar to a car. Just like with a car, the oil needs to be checked.  In most cases, generators take 2 quarts of oil. Natural or synthetic oil can typically be used, but synthetics tend to perform better in temperature extremes. Have  SAE 5W-30 motor oil SAE 5W-30 motor oil on hand as this helps your standby generator start more easily during the winter months .

 

Check the Fuel (LP)

Check your propane tank(s) and make sure you’ve got fuel.  Contact your fuel provider for percentages and when you might need a delivery should you experience an extended outage.

 

 

 

 

Portable generators require maintenance as well; some helpful hints:
Think About Fuel. If you have your generator in storage and do not plan to use it within 30 days, stabilize the gas with fuel stabilizer. Add the stabilizer according to package directions and then run your generator for a few minutes to circulate the solution through the carburetor. This is also a good time to rotate your fuel supply. Pour the gas from your stored fuel into the car and then fill up the gas cans with fresh fuel, again adding fuel stabilizer for storage. Start up an run the unit outside.

Check  Your Generators Oil. Make sure your Portable Generator has enough oil to keep it running smoothly. Many generators shut down automatically to protect the engine if the level gets too low. To keep yours protected and ready-to-go for a winter storm or home emergency, check the oil level by referencing the dipstick and filling to the full marker. Keep a few quarts of oil on hand in case of emergencies. Refer to your engine manual  for exact specifications.

Know How, Where and With What. Keep a flashlight handy so that you will be able to find your way to your generator and learn to start, adjust and shut off your generator to make sure you are familiar with how you will operate it when there is a power outage. Running your generator occasionally will not only help you learn to use it, but will also keep the engine well-lubricated.

Also be sure to think about where you will place the generator when you do need to use it. Do not run a generator inside homes, garages, crawlspaces, basements, sheds or similar areas, even when using fans or opening doors and windows for ventilation. Deadly levels of carbon monoxide (CO) can quickly build up in these spaces and can linger for hours, even after the generator has shut off. Place the unit outside and far from doors, windows, vents and other openings that could allow CO to come indoors or be drawn into potentially occupied spaces. Direct the engine exhaust away from potentially occupied spaces.

 

 

Should you experience an outage or generator emergency Lucci Electric is on call 24/7 to help.

 

Check out this helpful video/link

http://www.consumerreports.org/video/view/home-garden/outdoor/3909184331001/5-tips-to-keep-your-portable-generator-ready/

The Nest Pro Thermostat

Do you worry about getting the right level of heating and cooling when you are away?

Whether you are traveling for the holidays, a long weekend or the winter or summer months, a Nest thermostat just might be the answer to keeping a check on your heat and air conditioning while away or out of town.

Today’s improved technology allows you to keep track of your thermostat from your Smartphone or Tablet, insuring that it’s operating in the most cost efficient and effective way.

In the past, the best way to save energy at home was with a programmable thermostat. Now with improved technology, the NEST thermostat provides a more advanced solution to your heating and cooling needs. Said simply, the new NEST thermostat can save you money and simplify your life by optimizing your heat and air-conditioning.  It adjusts to the right temperature that you have been doing manually regardless of where you are.  How does it do that?

The NEST is a learning thermostat.  Once installed and used for a few days it will acquire the temperatures at the times you prefer and start to activate those heating and cooling requests. Connected to your home or office WIFI it’s that simple. Control NEST with  “Nest Mobile app” on your smart phone offers all of the control you need to check in.

Lucci Electric is a NEST PRO provider and installer and that brings several benefits to you that you can’t get from “the big box stores” and doing it on your own.  For starters, we offer an exclusive 5-year warranty versus the standard 2 year warranty and we can make it seamless for you from installation as well as train you how to use it.  And if a problem does exist, when you are away, we are here to help.

NEST can bring you more energy efficiency, and peace of mind. It also “connects” with other NEST product such as cameras, smoke detectors and CO2 detectors.

In some states (including Connecticut), there are rebates available if you purchase a Smart thermostat (including Nest) and provide proof of purchase.

Check out this NEST Video to better understand how it works and we are here to help make it happen for you.

De-icing During the Winter Months

Shorter days mean winter is fast approaching and sadly this winter is expected to bring
more snow, ice and colder temperatures.* For your personal protection, that may mean a warmer coat,
and weather resistant boots. For your home, it’s time to think about protecting your roof, ceilings and walls from ice damming and water damage with roof and gutter deicing cables.

What is Ice damming?
Those “winter wonderland” icicles hanging from your gutters are not as benign as you think. Ice dams are caused by a buildup of ice that prevents melting snow from properly draining. The water that is trapped behind the ice buildup spreads under the shingles back into the house. Your home could suffer thousands of dollars in water damage from ice dams and frozen, blocked gutters.
Why is it dangerous
Ice dams and snow buildup are not only a danger to your roof and the interior of your home, but to people as well. Large chunks of ice hanging from a roof can break off, causing injury to people or damage to property. A slowly dripping ice dam can create a thin sheet of black ice on walkways, steps and driveways, posing a serious danger to those walking beneath.

What can be done?
Roof and gutter deicing cables can be installed to protect your home and NOW is the time to do it before it gets too cold.
Roof and gutter deicing cables are designed only to create a small open tunnel under the ice dam to allow water that is trapped above the dam to drain off the roof and or through your gutter system.
Roof & gutter de-icing systems help prevent both ice dams and icicles from forming by creating a continuous path for roof snow melt to drain from the roof. They have been installed in many homes in the area, saving homeowners thousands of dollars in potential damage.
These systems operate with an automatic control or a switch inside your home.
Once installed, you can sit back and relax when the predicted cold and icy winter hits!

*Prediction based on The Farmer’s Almanac and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.