What To Do When The Power Fails
What do you do when the power fails? Are you a traditionalist that relies on candles and for the power to come back on or are you prepared so you can continue life as usual without interruption. Having a back-up power supply means you don’t need to worry about losing access to the internet or your freezer defrosting.
Power Cuts Affect Everyone
The electrical grid serves everybody, from homeowners to farms, meaning we are all at risk of suffering from a power cut. Whilst power cuts are usually quite uncommon in built up areas, they can have a detrimental affect; especially on businesses. People living in rural areas and on farms are likely to suffer from power cuts.
Understanding how the power grid works and and the factors that contribute to power cuts will help you to make a more informed decision about whether you need a backup power supply or not. The basis of the electrical grid are:
- Power Generation – Large generators produce high voltage electricity, these generators can be steam driven by fossil fuels or nuclear power or water driven by dams and rivers.
- High Voltage Lines – The high voltage is then transmitted through these lines to substations.
- Sub-Stations – Substations receive high voltage from power plants and then step down the voltage using transformers.
- Poles and Transformers – The transformers then receive the voltage from the substation and step it down again for residential use.
- Industry Substations – Some factories and larger industries have dedicated substations. These substations can step-down the high voltage to various different levels dependent of the industries requirements.
This type of structure is often referred to as an electrical infrastructure. Each part of this infrastructure is part of a chain, and if a part of the link is broken then the system will fail.
A Proactive Approach To Power Cuts
There a re a number of things that can cause power cuts. Both nature and human error can cause the electrical grid to fail. No matter what the cause might be, the result is the same when one part of the grid fails you’ll be left with no power. Isolated damage caused by the weather can be repaired quite quickly or rerouted to avoid disruption. However, substation failures or line damage can have much longer repair times, meaning you’ll be left without power for much longer.
Be Prepared With A Backup Generator
It’s impossible to tell when a power cut is going to happen. So one of the best defences against a power cut is to be prepared with a backup generator. One of the best backup power options for both individuals and businesses to use is a diesel generator. Medical facilities, farms and catering facilities will usually have emergency power ready to kick in, should the mains electricity fail. If you think you mightn’t need one that often then a used one, can provided a much more cost-effective backup generator option.
Many people realise that their need for electric power is not something they can easily go without. Whether it be a temporary power outage or something else, losing power can have a number of negative effects. Having reliable power means you can continue to operate even during a power cut.
What Is A PTO Generator?
PTO stands for power take off generator. This type of generator is one of the most reliable power supplies to operate equipment. PTO generators convert the energy output shaft of your vehicle into electricity at minimal loss. However, it can also be used in a similar way to power a building during a power cut.
It’s highly unlikely you’ll be powering up your generator every day, so having a cost-effective backup power supply will mean you always have an alternative source of power. Many farms choose PTO generators as they are often powered using tractors.
4 Reasons To Consider A Power Take Off Generator
1. Take Power Anywhere
With the ability to take power to multiple locations is a huge advantage. Using a power take off generator means you can easily access power whenever and wherever you need it. From emergency power supplies to powering your tools, the options are endless. For what is considered a relatively small investment, will mean you can benefit for a reliable backup and mobile power supply.
2. Reliable Backup Power Supply
One of the biggest advantages if a PTO generator is the ability to supply your home or business with backup power during a power cut. Owning a PTO type generator means the next time there is a power cut, you’ll still be able to use and access power. Just think about the last time you suffered from a power cut and how you coped. Would it not of been easier to just hook up a generator and use your power like it had never gone off in the first place.
3. Lower Maintenance & Operation Costs
The more equipment you have, the more you need to worry about maintaining it and this will come at at expense. Whilst breaking down the finances will start to complicate things, a PTO generator has very minimal running costs and its simple components means it doesn’t require much maintenance either. Even with very little maintenance, the generator will smoothly all year around.
4. Low Upfront Cost
It’s not just the cost of running a PTO, the initial purchase is quite inexpensive too. Purchasing a PTO generator means your making use of an engine that you already know and use. On average it’s usually 50% cheaper compared to other types of generators such as diesel powered generators. The ability to move the generator around with ease, means you can benefit from power at anytime.
Power outages can have a more detrimental effect on your business that you may think, especially when it comes to losing money.
Research has shown that 59% of Fortune 500 companies experience over 1.5 hours of downtime a week, meaning £30.4m being lost each year.
With an increase of power cuts over the past couple of years, it’s never been more important to make sure you’re prepared.
Having a standby generator on site will not just protect your business against contingencies, if the power does go out it will automatically start running and prevent downtime.
However, should you have a generator in place and there’s an outage in the area, there are ways you could lose revenue…
Communications systems will be down
Without electricity, your colleagues won’t be able to use their phones, should they have access to a landline, this means that not only will they not be able to make internal phone calls, but they’ll also not be able to receive calls from customers of clients.
Should your customers have the option to place order over the phone, should they try to call when your power is out, this will also mean you lose revenue.
You may also lose any new or potential customers who may try to call your office during downtime, they may decide to then place an order with one of your competitors.
As well as not being able to use your phones, your staff will also be unable to access their emails, again, missing important contact with customers and potentially losing out on business.
Internal systems won’t work
Regardless of the sector you work in, most businesses rely on their internal systems to help operations run smoothly. If your colleagues can’t turn on their computers, then how can they process orders, manage stock levels or monitor any existing activity.
Being forced to close complete during a powercut can happen, if you can’t access your operational systems, your team may need to spend longer working on a backlog of work once the full electricity is restored.
This will cause a number of delays and mean once the power is back, you’ll spend a significant amount of time ‘catching up’ and not working as efficiently as you usually would.
Employees can’t carry out their job
Without power, your staff are unable to work, you may think that there’s always something to do, which is true, but how can this be undertook without access to sales, ops and admin software, or phone lines or emails. Once tasks to undertake have ran out, they can be complete on paper, they may end up sat around waiting for the power to come on.
If you’re unable to get electricity u and running at your premises, you’ll also be paying staff who can’t work. Some power cuts only last an hour or so, but you don’t want to risk paying wages for a workforce who have been out of action for a week.
Operations will halt
If you’re a manufacturer and you lose mains power, if you don’t have a generator on stand by, you won’t be able to continue making your products. Without electricity, all equipment will stop working and this can be very costly. If you don’t continue to manufacture your items, you may be forced to turn down orders, or have a hard time catching up on the missed orders during the power outage.
If you cant meet demand, then this can have a significant impact on your relationship with both new and existing customers, if your best customers comes to your with a large order, you don’t want the risk of a power cut to prevent you from manufacturing their order.
Prevent losing money during a power outage
Power cuts are caused by factors out of our control meaning its likely that this may happen to you. There are steps that can be taken to safeguard your business, such as having a generator on site, this can make all the difference.
Should your local electricity operator send out an alert of maintenance or outages in the area, hiring a generator to protect your business can be beneficial.
Having a generator on long term hire, or buying one permanently could be an advantage, especially if you run a business like a factory, data centre or a call centre.
If you do have a generator on site long term, keep it in mind that you need to keep it running efficiently so it should be regularly serviced including load tests and maintenance.
Is your business prepared for an outage?
During a power cut, you may lose a lot including preventing customer service and shutting down an entire production line. This may have serious effects on both your reputation as a brand and your profits, it’s a great proactive measure to have an option in place to help safeguard your business and premises.