electricians, wiring, installations
Written by Larry Cook

Standby Generator Basics for Small Businesses – Part 2

From 2000 to 2013, the U.S. averaged 200 reported power grid outages annually. As discussed in Part 1, failing to plan for the loss of electricity could lead to a small company losing business, communications with clients or customers, inventory, and money. Businesses of every size can prevent these potential problems by installing a standby generator on their premises. Part 2 will discuss Capacity, Proper Operation, Noise, and Talk to Experts.


Prior to buying a standby generator, consult with a licensed commercial electrician regarding your power requirements. Typically, a generator will not be capable of generating adequate wattage for powering a whole commercial building. Thus, it is important to carefully prioritize what should be powered when there is a loss of electricity from the utility. Once your needs are narrowed down and the required power capacity is determined, ensure the model you purchase will meet those requirements.

Proper Operation

A standby generator must only be operated by following the instructions of the manufacturer. Ensure compliance with local building codes and obtain the proper permits for your commercial standby generator.

Regularly scheduled testing of standby generators will ensure they are properly functioning and ready in an emergency. It is also important for their proper maintenance. Like a car, they need to be started occasionally.


A standby generator will generate a level of noise when being used. There are some models that are quite loud and may disturb the people in surrounding buildings and residences. Fortunately, a commercial standby generator is typically more quiet than portable generators. In any case, operate a generator only when it is needed. Schedule its automatic testing during normal hours.

Talk to Experts

Do not hesitate to discuss subjects that you think may be important regarding standby generators with a licensed electrician and manufacturer representatives. Gather the information you need prior to committing your company to installation.

Electrical Peace of Mind

Providing professional electricians since 1988 in Maryland, Cook Electric is the company you can rely on for all your electrical service needs, including:

  • Commercial & Residential Electrical Installations
  • Marina & Residential Pier Wiring
  • Electrical Service & Repair
  • Specialty Electrical Services

For knowledgeable, fair, honest, reliable, and conscientious service, call Cook Electric today at (410) 266-9040. We will be very glad to help you.