A generator can be somewhat tricky as a primary power source; your best bet will be a portable unit, which will require you to fuel it with every use, and may be large and/or pricey depending on how much power you plan to use. That being said, generators can provide consistent backup assistance for your power needs — and your peace of mind, especially if you only get to use your cabin every so often.
Automatic standby generators provide power when the current from your main source is interrupted, which can help during blackouts while you’re there or even when you’re away to ensure key systems are kept online if and when necessary. The system simply turns itself on when it detects a loss in power from the main power source and turns itself off once that source has been restored.
This ability to save you from major headaches also can translate to other savings as well. “It’s not very widely known that an automatic backup generator increases home equity,” states Jake Thomas, product manager for Generac Power Systems, the leading automatic standby generator manufacturer. “In some areas, homeowner’s insurance [firms also] may give you a discount.”
Different suppliers will offer their own options, but for the most part, selections are available to supply backup power only to your essential circuits or to the whole house, depending on your needs and budget. And they’re likely not as out of reach as you might think.
“There’s a fairly large misconception that it’s really, really expensive — like $15,000 to $20,000,” Thomas observes. “In the past 15 years, with the economies of scale and technology advances, it’s become much more affordable. A generator, with installation costs, could be less than $5,000.”
If you decide that alternative energy will be the more economical solution for your cabin, consider backing it up with a generator specifically designed to work with those systems, such as Generac’s EcoGen. This generator runs on propane gas and can help provide power in instances when the energy generated by other sources is not enough to meet demand.
“The EcoGen acts as an automatic backup, so you never have to get out a portable unit,” Thomas explains. “You can live life as if it were connected to the grid.”