A backup generator that's outside on top of a slab of raised bricks

Automatic Backup Generator FAQ

In Western New York, our winters can be unpredictable and problematic. Power outages are common --- and when they occur, everyone wishes they had a generator. Graves Bros. Home Improvement has collected our most frequently asked questions to help you decide if an automatic backup generator is right for you.

What is an automatic backup generator?

When a power outage hits, an automatic backup generator supplies power to your home. Once your electrical power returns, the unit switches off until the next time it is needed. Generators ensure that you are never without electricity in your home.

Why should I choose an automatic over a portable generator?

  • Automatic backup generators are safer than portable generators for providing backup power to your home.
    • Portable generators carry the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning if improperly placed.
  • Backup generators run on your home's natural gas line.
    • There is no need to refill the unit with gas.
    • They are less expensive to run than portable units.
  • Backup generators kick in within seconds of a power outage.
    • A portable generator requires you to pull it out and fill it with fuel.
    • Portable generators require you to run extension cords throughout your home to use power.
  • Automatic backup generators work round the clock and turn off when not needed.
    • There's no need for supervision of the unit.

What size generator do I need for my home?

Use the Generac® generator sizing calculator to determine the appropriate size for your home. Before you begin using the tool, assess what areas of your home you want to include in case of a power outage. For example, do you want to be able to use your washer and dryer?

Still not sure? Contact us to schedule an appointment. We're happy to help pair your home with the right generator for your needs.

What kind of maintenance does an automatic generator require?

It's recommended to schedule service every six months with an authorized Generac dealer. They will perform oil and filter changes to keep your generator working smoothly for years to come.

Can I DIY a home backup generator?

It is recommended that you have a trained, licensed contractor install the unit because of the need to connect to the electrical panel and natural gas line to your home. Your contractor will obtain the necessary permits and perform all of the necessary components of the installation.

Contact Graves Bros. Home Improvement

If you're considering an automatic backup generator, contact us at Graves Bros. We have the training, experience, and know-how to have you ready for the next power outage.