Reply to "Power outages and generators"

This is an area that I'd love to get some education on. My level of preparedness here is probably lacking. I currently have a couple of the small 2000 watt Generac generators that can be piggy backed to create 4000'ish watts. These were the quietest option I could find to power refrigerators/ freezers and still provide a bit of extra juice should I need it. I researched a bunch and the best option I could find was either the small Honda's or the Generac's. I was very familiar with the Honda options because we used them extensively where I worked in the army. When I called the guys up to ask about long term reliability, since I've been gone for a couple years, they told me they switched to Generac after testing proved them to be quieter than the Honda's. Reliability seemed about the same to them with no major issues reported. 

I did the dual option rather than a single for a couple of different reasons:

- Quiet. I'd rather not have the generator drawing attention to my house when everyone else is quiet. I also use it for other things like camping where I don't want it making a shitload of noise and ruining my zen. 

- Just enough power for the fridge/ freezer without burning a bunch of fuel.

- Very efficient for the size/ weight.

- I can split them up and loan one out to a neighbor or friend should they need to cool a freezer down or to make ice. More versatile than a single generator option. 

- Can be used for camping or other outdoor activities without a huge footprint or bunch of drama. 


Now that I am in a house with natural gas, I have been wondering about getting a whole house generator. The cost is kind of steep at around $7K for one to power my whole house but it seems like a decent deal if I could pretty much function with everything in the house as normal, especially during an extended power outage. We had a storm here a couple years ago that left people without power for more than 2 weeks in my neighborhood. The biggest threat from power loss is probably tornados and I hate not having air conditioning when it's hot. Maybe I'm a pussy but I'm too old to sweat through the night. Now for my questions:

- Does anyone else have experience with one of the whole house options? Does anyone have experience with natural gas being shut off 

- Does anyone have experience with natural gas being shut off during a major power outage? I'm  kind of skeptical about gas being shut off with the electricity in the case of a tornado. Snow and ice worry me less in this regard. 

- I do have a gas fireplace and other options to stay warm during the winter so am I just wasting money on convenience rather than necessity? 

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