Be a Hero! Plan for the Power Emergency Coming Your Way
Allentown, New Jersey, January 2, 2019 - Emergency preparedness: Most homeowners are not ready for the power outages common in weather disasters and heading toward this State during the upcoming hurricane season. Emergency power generators prepare the population for loss of power.
Seniors and the sick: Vulnerable populations require power for refrigeration and air conditioning.
Starting A/C on low power sources requires more power than running on low power sources: Micro-Air’s EasyStart permits the starting of air conditioning on emergency power, reducing the current required to start an air conditioner on smaller power sources.
‘Twas the night of an electrical emergency and all through the house, not a light bulb was lighting, not one for your spouse. With the classic poem’s vision of ”children nestled all snug in their beds” behind us, the image of security at home lingers. Fireplace lit, heat (or A/C) for comfort, lights burning brightly and food keeping in the freezer. Now fast forward to storm season. Power out, darkness, no A/C or heat, food spoiling in the fridge, and the utility company working feverishly to restore power. After Hurricane Katrina, only 75% of Louisiana customers had their power restored within 23 days. Then Hurricane Rita hit and caused additional outages. Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Wilma and Ike knocked Florida out of power for stretches of up to 14 days before power was restored to 95% of those who lost it. Power outages are inevitable. How the homeowner addresses the outage is the variable in the equation.
Who needs it?
A storm can render your home uninhabitable, a problem for anyone--especially for those high-risk groups of the elderly, infants, and those with breathing difficulties and other chronic medical conditions. Food borne illness can also follow the loss of power. And let’s not forget that certain medicines spoil if not under refrigeration and others can increase the effects of heat on an individual.
The Centers for Disease Control recognizes that people with chronic medical conditions are less likely to sense and respond to changes in temperature and notes that conditions like heart disease, mental illness, poor circulation and obesity are risk factors for heat-related illness. Access to air conditioning becomes critical to survival when power is out. The heat of a heat pump can be just as essential to have, if not more so. Without it, many scurry to uncomfortable shelters or the far away homes of friends and family. The CDC recommends that people plan for “alternatives to meet your needs when the power goes out.”
Hero or Goat?
Most people don’t own a portable power generator and never consider buying one. If they do, they don’t follow through to acquire and install one. Then the next storm bears down, takes out the power and leaves the homeowner fleeing the loss of power and the resulting heat. The owners are the goats when even a small generator could have avoided the problems that fall to them. An emergency power generator may be sized well for running your home’s A/C or heat pump, refrigerator, TV and a few lights. But starting your air conditioning/heat pump is another story without the right technical product. What’s that technology? It’s the electronic soft starter known as the EasyStart™. The electronic soft starter reduces the power needed to start an A/C unit. The evaluation of your needs is not that complex overall, but someone needs to gauge the BTUs you will run and the size of your generator.
Why do the lights blink when you turn on your vacuum at home? That’s because additional power is needed to start the appliance. The power required to run it is less. The same is true for air conditioning and heat pumps. Starting A/C requires a millisecond power in-rush of up to 100% (RK) of the power needed to run the same A/C unit. That makes some people balk at purchasing the much larger generator needed to satisfy the start requirement. But there is an alternative.
Micro-Air, Inc. (www.micro-air.com) makes the EasyStart 364™ and 368™, an electronic soft starter for home air conditioning units. Economically priced at $300.00, it works with any window unit, through-wall unit and most other central air conditioning single-phase A/C motors. So if your home A/C unit requires, say, 1200 watts (RK) when kicking on, and then settles into a constant 200-watt draw, (RK) the EasyStart™ and a properly sized small generator can do the start/run job. And the range for the EasyStart goes up to 72,000 BTUs for A/C units and heat pumps. If “home is where the heart is”, imagine the difference between a temporary move out of your home to avoid the heat/cold in an emergency, to remaining “where the heart is.” The EasyStart™ makes that possible.
Originally developed for the marine and RV industries, it is primarily a do-it-yourself installation for those contexts. Most homeowners will need an electrician to determine which appliances and devices (along with their A/C) they will need in an electrical emergency, to choose a wiring system and to install a transfer switch to change from utility power to emergency power. Once that’s done, the homeowner is ready to ’plug and play’ the generator in an emergency. He’s the hero----and the only owner on the block with lights for safety, A/C or heat for comfort, power for his wifi and TV, and food and medicine safely stored in the refrigerator.
The CDC is clear on using backup generators:
“Power outages are commonplace during disasters, and they may last for several days. You can reduce losses and speed the recovery process by installing an emergency generator.”
https://www.energy.gov/ceser/emergency-preparedness/community-guidelines-energy-emergencies/using-backup-generators Be the hero, not the goat. Install a backup generator and an EasyStart for air conditioning/heat pump use after an emergency. What a difference it will make in your quality of life in an emergency!
Micro-Air is attending the 2019 Florida RV Supershow at the Tampa Fairgrounds from January 16-19, 2019 and can be found there at Booth A-113 in Building A.