frequently asked questions
How Much Does a Backup Generator Cost?
More and more families are realizing that whole home backup power is necessary equipment to provide safety and comfort when power outages occur. However, it can be difficult to tell how much a generator costs. We have found online estimates anywhere from $4,000 to $25,000 for a fully installed generator. That range isn’t too helpful for our customers, so let’s get more specific.
Components of Generator Price
- The price of the generator itself is determined primarily by the generator capacity. Generator size depends on the appliances and fixtures to be powered. A whole-home generator that powers the HVAC and everything in the house will be larger – and therefore more expensive – than a partial-home backup generator that powers only a few of the circuits. Most of our customers prefer the security of a whole-home system despite the modest increase in cost.
- The price of installation is the trickiest to predict, and typically requires an on-site visit from a professional system designer. It depends on the generator location, service size for the house (e.g. 100 amp, 200 amp), the fuel type (e.g. natural gas v. propane), the length of gas and electric runs, local permitting, and electrical upgrades necessary. Material quality and craftsmanship also matters. We believe the workmanship on your installation should last at least as long as your generator. To find out more about our installation process, call to schedule a meeting with one of our pros.
- The price of system improvements can also drive installation cost. Many customers choose to add cold-weather kits and Uninterruptible Power Supply devices to their generator investment. Some customers opt for a smaller capacity generator and get the most from it by including load management or “Smart Management Modules (SMMs)” in their systems. If you are curious about these options, just give us a call to talk with a system designer.
NWI Generator Average Cost Ranges
We believe our customers should get the highest quality installation and excellent service at a reasonable price.
Whole Home Backup Generator Cost v. Alternatives
While we believe natural gas or propane backup generators are an excellent choice, there are a few alternatives to power your whole home in the event of a power outage:
- Battery backup systems such as the Tesla Powerwall or the Generac PWRCell can offer backup power for a shorter duration (a few hours). We typically recommend these systems as part of a solar installation, but they are available on a stand-alone basis starting around $14,000.
- Solar power systems provide a sustainable source of energy for your home, and can lower your electric bills significantly. Most of these systems include battery backup that works in tandem with the system and can provide backup power for a shorter duration (a few hours). These systems typically start around $25,000 in our service area.
If you would like to discuss the pros and cons of any of these alternatives, please give us a call to speak with a system designer.