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6 Things Hurricane Survivors Want You to Know

June 1, 2022

Hurricane evacuation route sign on highway

People who experience hurricanes have one thing in common. If they could go back in time, they would have been more prepared. Most of us subconsciously assume that our lives won’t ever really be disrupted by the weather. This makes it easier to put hurricane preparedness at the bottom of our to-do list. 

Most of you reading this probably won’t have your life disrupted by a hurricane. But wouldn’t it be worth it to go ahead and prepare anyway just in case? Get ready now and your future self, your family, and your home will thank you. 

Here are 6 items hurricane survivors recommend you take care of right away.  

  • Evacuation Plan: Know the recommended evacuation route, and keep your gas tank full. 
  • Supplies: Keep bottled water and other supplies on hand.
  • Hurricane Kit: Include a first-aid kit, medications, a battery-powered radio, flashlight, batteries, whistle, and local maps.
  • Copy Important Documents: Back up your computer, and keep copies of important documents in a safety deposit box. 
  • Prepare Your Home: Secure or store outdoor items, and make sure your roof and shingles are in good shape to withstand strong winds.
  • Back Up Your Power: Determine what type of generator you need in case of a power outage. 

Hurricanes mean power outages. If conditions are unsafe, you and your family may need to remain at home. You depend on your refrigerator, electric stove, lights, and A/C. What if they can’t be used? Communication is vital during a hurricane power outage, and if you can’t charge your phone, use your computer, or tune in to the local news, you’ll be cut off from communication.

If you lose the ability to cool your home during the summer months, the heat can make your home unbearable, and continual high temperatures and humidity can damage your home’s interior. Losing power to your refrigerator means your food will go bad and replacing it can be incredibly expensive.

Hurricane power outage readiness should include the purchase of a generator. Owning a reliable generator ensures peace of mind during a power outage caused by a hurricane.

There are two main types of generators for hurricanes: portable and home standby

A portable generator is a convenient solution if you only want to back up a few essentials. Portable generators come in different sizes, they run on either gasoline or propane, and they don’t need to be installed. If you haven’t looked at generators in a while, you’ll find lots of new technology and features designed to make your life easier. One example is Carburetor Free® electronic fuel injection technology, which helps conserve fuel and simplify long-term storage. Portable generators also include a variety of convenient features like wireless remote start so you can start and stop your generator from up to 80 feet.

If you’d like to power more than just the essentials, or even your whole home, you may want to have a standby generator installed. Standbys never need refueling since they are connected to your propane or natural gas system. Your home standby generator starts automatically when the power goes out and returns to standby when power is restored, ensuring security and convenience for your family during a hurricane power outage.

Hurricane season is upon us, so post your to-do list in a prominent place, and don’t forget to invest in a safe source of backup power. Following recommendations from hurricane survivors and making preparations ahead of time will give you and your family peace of mind so you can relax and enjoy your summer. 

Pressure Washing 101 for Spring Cleanup Success

May 24, 2022

Grime, pollen, mold, mildew, and dirt have been busy accumulating over the winter. Why hire someone to clean things up for you when you can do it yourself? 

Using your own pressure washer is cost-effective, efficient, and satisfying! Here’s what you need to know so you can be confident your spring cleanup projects will be a success. 

Hot or Cold 

You can buy a hot water pressure washer or a cold water pressure washer. 

The hot water variety is especially good for cleaning up any kind of grease or oil, plus hot water kills germs, mold, and bacteria. The hot water allows you to use less detergent and you’ll also have a shorter drying time. Hot water pressure washers are typically much more expensive than cold water pressure washers. If a pressure washer is not explicitly labeled as “hot” it’s generally safe to assume it’s a cold water unit. The vast majority of pressure washers available at retail are cold water.

Cold water pressure washers are less costly than the hot variety and are the machine of choice for most homeowners. They are a popular solution for cleaning up your home’s exterior,  driveway, sidewalk, patio, or deck.  

Do I really need a pressure washer? 

When springtime arrives, most people notice how dingy or dirty their home looks. Winter weather tends to leave dirt and debris behind, but warmer weather’s arrival means it’s time to clean things up. 

Whether your home’s exterior is brick, stucco, or vinyl, a pressure washer and a little time on the weekend is all it takes to brighten up your home and give it a fresh appearance for spring. Your sidewalk, driveway, patio, or deck may also need a spring cleaning. Unless you enjoy using a scrub brush and a bucket, you’ll love how a pressure washer will make your outdoor cleaning a lot easier.  You might also want to clean up your patio furniture, your vehicle, or your boat. 

Pressure washing saves your back. When you are washing your deck, you don’t have to be on your hands and knees scrubbing away stubborn stains. Stand upright and let the water do the work for you. 

Pressure washing saves time. You can have all the outdoor areas of your home fresh and clean in the amount of time it would take you to do one area by hand. You also don’t have to drag out lots of extra stuff like buckets, cleaning solutions to mix, sponges, and ladders. Speaking of ladders, using a pressure washer means no more dangerous climbing. Just point your pressure washer up and spray away that hard-to-reach mildew on your house. 

Pressure washing saves money. Did you know that using a pressure washer instead of a garden hose saves water? The high pressure creates more cleaning power with less water so you’ll use less water and save on your water bill. 

Pressure washing keeps your family safe. You’ll blast away contaminants and harmful mold so your family can breathe easier. When you clean slippery algae off horizontal surfaces, you’re preventing dangerous slips or falls. 

Pressure washing boosts curb appeal and helps maintain the value of your home. Improving the condition of your driveway and sidewalks and spraying away unattractive mildew will make your home more attractive so it stands out whether you’re selling your home or not. 

Which detergents should I use? 

First, you don’t have to use detergents with your pressure washer, but sometimes it might be necessary. 

Before you clean, read up on the safest way to clean each surface.  

If you want to use your pressure washer for lots of different projects, you should consider a multi-purpose detergent so you can use it on your house, deck, vehicle, or driveway. Also, using one detergent for most of your projects is more cost-effective than buying different specialty detergents for each item you want to clean.

On the other hand, you might get better results from a detergent created specifically for the job you have in mind. You might choose a detergent specifically formulated for removing stains on stucco, or for destroying mold and mildew on brick. If you’re washing a boat or a car, you should read your owner’s manual in case you should use a recommended type of detergent. If you’re about to clean all the concrete, you might want to grab a detergent created to get the job done right. 

If eco-friendly products are important to you, you’re already familiar with reading labels. Choosing the right detergent also means you need to read the label and make sure the detergent you choose is biodegradable and the ingredients are environmentally friendly. You’ll also want to check the toxicity levels of the product to make sure it won’t cause harm to people, animals, or plants.

Outdoor Cleaning Simplified

Simplify all your outdoor cleaning projects with pressure washing and be confident your spring cleanup projects will be a success.

What a Site Survey Is and Why It Is Important When Purchasing a Home Standby Generator

March 2, 2022

A site survey takes the confusion out of purchasing a home standby generator.

Knowledge is power. Purchase a Champion site survey now to learn exactly what’s involved with the purchase and installation of a home standby generator. A Champion dealer will walk you through the installation process from start to finish, and you will be equipped with all the details you need, all your questions answered and a customized estimate specifically designed for you, your family, your home and your budget. 

Contact an Authorized Champion Dealer with our Home Standby Generator Selector.

Automatic home standby generators provide peace of mind since they operate whether you are home or not. Your family is your biggest investment, and we understand how important it is to know they are safe and protected during unexpected emergencies.

Champion’s “keep it simple” strategy connects you with the most affordable backup solution for your needs.

Your costs for purchasing and installing a home standby generator system will include:

  • The generator itself
  • An automatic transfer switch
  • Any power management modules needed for high demand appliances (e.g. electric cooking range or electric clothes dryer)
  • Placement and installation of the system by an authorized Champion installer, including materials related to electrical connections and natural gas (NG) or propane (LPG) plumbing, fittings and connections and batteries 

Once purchased and installed, ongoing costs are fuel and maintenance. Your Champion dealer can size your generator to minimize your fuel consumption costs with an efficient Champion home standby generator and support your Champion home standby with scheduled maintenance.

During a site survey: What you will learn

Champion will contact you within 48 hours of your site survey purchase and connect you with a local, authorized dealer. Then, the authorized Champion dealer will schedule a convenient time to meet with you at your home to conduct the site survey.

The Champion dealer:  

  • Walks you through the system installation process 
  • Ensures local codes are met·        
  • Provides a turnkey solution that works for you   

In order to avoid costly mistakes that would need to be corrected in the future, no important details will be overlooked. Your dealer site survey determines the placement, installation and materials needed for your home standby generator system. Your Champion installer will teach you how your system operates, and once installed, will demonstrate the features of your new standby. 

Where can my generator be installed?

The answer to this question isn’t always easy due to the various local codes and proper safety precautions that must be considered. A Champion dealer knows exactly how to answer these questions and make recommendations resulting in an efficient and cost-effective installation. Champion home standby generators are rated for installation as close as 18 inches from the outer wall of your home (where code allows), saving wiring and plumbing costs.  A home standby generator should never be installed closer than 5 feet to an opening in the home, including windows, doors, and vents, and should also never be installed under decking.

Do I need a concrete pad?

Depending on local code, some installations may require a concrete pad, although home standby generators are usually installed on graded landscape rock or pea gravel to allow for drainage.  A Champion dealer can provide a pre-formed pad solution if required.

How much plumbing will I need?

Your Champion generator must be connected to your home’s fuel source (NG or LPG) in order to create electricity. The installer will determine the best standby generator placement based on several factors including the location of your gas meter in order to minimize the fuel pipe required. An optimal installation uses under 20 feet of pipe.

Do I need a meter upgrade?

In order to prevent your generator’s fuel requirements from starving the other appliances in your home, natural gas may require a gas meter upgrade through your gas utility. This will be determined by a Champion dealer.

Where will the transfer switch be installed?

Your Champion generator is connected to your home’s electrical distribution system through an automatic transfer switch. Depending on where your distribution panel is located, your home may need a transfer switch installed either outdoors or indoors. Champion offers switches for either requirement.

How much wiring will I need?

The amount of wire you’ll need depends on what side of the house your electrical meter and main distribution panel are located. This will affect how much wire needs to be run to the generator. The Champion dealer will determine the best standby generator placement in order to help minimize the electrical wire and conduit required. The optimal wire run is under 20 feet.

Do I need a load management module?

For whole house power, with intelligent load management technology, larger electrical demand items that use 240-volt double pole breakers such as electric cooking ranges or electric clothes dryers can be managed with the optional load management module (LMM). Managing these items with an LMM allows you to use a smaller generator by intelligently controlling when each appliance can start, saving you money on fuel consumption and the cost of a generator

Before a site survey: What to know

What are my goals for a home standby generator system?

  •  If you want your generator system to manage your entire home’s electrical demand during a power outage, then you are the perfect match for our most flexible solution a Whole House Standby Generator System.
  • If you want your generator system to manage 12 or 16 select circuits in your home during a power outage, then you are a great fit for our most cost-effective solution a Select Circuit Standby Generator System.

Other helpful items: 

When estimating installation costs, it’s helpful to know the size of your home in square feet, the size of your home’s electrical panel, and whether your home’s fuel supply is natural gas (NG) or propane (LPG). Your home’s electrical service size in Amps can be found at the main circuit breaker in the distribution panel of your home.

  • Whole House: For Champion Whole House managed power systems, if your home is under or around 4000 square feet, typically, it may be managed with a Champion 14kW generator.
  • Select Circuit: Champion’s Select Circuit systems can manage 12 or 16 circuits and requires your preselection of items you want to power during an outage. Sizing requirements are not based on the square footage of your home.

If you’re not sure about any of these items, a Champion Dealer will be happy to answer any questions you might have and offer a personalized recommendation during your site survey.

Get the process started and get connected to an Authorized Champion Dealer with our Home Standby Generator Selector tool.