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Frequently Asked Questions

We know you have questions, and we have answers. Having installed and serviced hundreds of generators across central North Carolina over the years, we’ve learned a thing or two. Below you will find answers to many of the questions that our customers have asked. If you dont find an answer to your question below, please contact us and a generator representative will be back in contact with you soon.

What is an automatic backup generator?

An automatic backup generator is a back up electrical system that operates whether you are home or away. Within seconds of an outage, it automatically supplies power directly to your home’s electrical circuit breaker box. After utility power returns, the generator shuts itself off and waits for the next outage. It operates on natural gas or liquid propane gas and sits outside just like a central air conditioning unit. See our “How It Works” video for more information.

Why should I buy an automatic backup generator instead of a portable generator?

During a utility power outage, an automatic backup generator provides numerous advantages over a portable generator:

  • The American Red Cross recommends permanently installed backup generators as a safer way to provide backup power to a home than a portable generator.
  • With an automatic backup generator properly installed outside, your home is protected from deadly carbon monoxide poisoning that is a much greater risk with portable generators.
  • Running on the home’s natural gas or LP fuel supply, it is less expensive to run than gasoline and sources such as natural gas do not need to be refilled.
  • They start automatically within seconds of a power outage, and eliminate the need to haul a portable generator outside or run extension cords throughout your home.
  • They provide protection 24/7, whether you’re home or away, and they turn themselves off when utility power returns, so there is no need to monitor the unit during an outage.

How do I correctly size a generator for my home?

The most logical way to determine your needs is to envision your home without power. Some outages may be short in duration, while others could last for days or weeks. What would your family miss during an outage?

The very best way to understand your options and work within your budget is to schedule a free in-home assessment. During your consultation, you will receive the personalized attention and detailed evaluation you need to find a solution that works for your need.

Essential Circuit Coverage – Generac takes the guesswork out of sizing by offering prepackaged Guardian Series generator systems. The generator will be paired with a transfer switch containing a predetermined number of circuits based on the generator’s kW power rating. Each circuit is directly connected to a matched circuit on the home’s main circuit breaker panel, providing electricity to that specific appliance or area of the home.

Managed Whole House Coverage – You can get more coverage with less generator, up to whole house coverage, by pairing a smaller generator with one of Generac’s load shedding options. This creates a managed power solution where non-essential circuits are shed when the generator approaches maximum capacity. They are cycled back on when essential circuits no longer require power, so all circuits receive power at different times.

Complete Whole House Coverage – Easily cover every circuit in your home by pairing one of Generac’s larger kW units and the proper transfer switch to provide full coverage. No circuit is ever left uncovered, so every appliance is available every minute.

How does the Generac G-Force® engine compare to air cooled engines used in other brands of backup generators?

Unlike other engines used in backup power generation, Generac G-Force engines are made specifically for generators. They are engineered to run for the long periods of time required during a severe power outage or on a job site, utilizing the same type of pressurized oil lubrication used to give automobile engines long and trouble-free lives.

Do generators have to be maintained?

All generators require periodic maintenance, such as oil and filter changes to ensure maximum performance for years of reliable service. Beco recommends you have your unit serviced every 6 months to ensure that it is ready to run when you need it most. And unlike others, Beco does not require a maintenance contract to service your generator. Refer to the owner’s manual for routine maintenance procedures and schedules. 

What size Natural gas line do I need?

We recommending contacting your gas provider, or a licensed plumber, and they will be able to size the gas line for you. Gas pipe size will depend on length of run from the source and how many elbows and T’s there are. 

Every home is different, and so is every installation. The placement of the generator, the amount of materials required, and the installation of the natural gas or LP fuel source all make estimating installation costs unique. The best way to know for sure is to get a free in-home assessment. Beco will listen to your needs, assess your home, and give you a detailed quote. All at no charge, with no obligation, and no pressure. 

How big should my liquid propane (LP) tank be?

Beco recommends at least 250 gallons for our Generac automatic standby units.  However, every home is different, and so is every installation and set-up.  We recommend that you get a free in-home assessment to help determine the best set up for your needs.  In-Home Assessments are available to you at no charge, with no obligation, and no pressure. 

Can I install the generator myself?

For safety reasons and to ensure adherence to all local, state and national electrical codes, particularly for non pre-wired or larger systems, it is highly recommended that you have your Generac home standby generator installed by a experienced, licensed electrician like Beco. Beco has installed hundreds of generators, and so you can be sure when you get your Generac generator from Beco, its installed correctly and safely.