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Power Outage Survey: Cost & Effects For Homeowners


Power outages are a nuisance. But while many of us think of power outages as briefly occurring during the occasional thunderstorm, power outages are a common reality that can be more expensive and destructive than previously thought.

A Harris Interactive survey sponsored by Briggs & Stratton revealed that 69% of U.S. adults, who had faced a power outage lasting more than 12 hours in the past two years, dealt with subsequent associated costs. From spoiled food to repairing damaged property, power outages can be costly.

Read on to learn more about the costs of power outages and how a home generator can help you avoid these costly damages.

The Hidden Costs of Power Outages:  A Look at the Data

In the Briggs & Stratton survey, respondents shared their power outage costs.

What Are The Most Common Costs?

Here are the top costs draining homeowners’ bank accounts after an extended power outage.

  • 40% had to replace spoiled food
  • 29% incurred costs for emergency supply purchases to protect their home and family during the power outage (including candles, flashlights, firewood, etc.)
  • 16% invested in a portable generator
  • 13% lost wages from having to take time off work
  • 11% reported property damage
  • 8% reported having to pay for a hotel room during the power outage

How Much Do These Expenses Cost?

The combined average of these incurred cost can top $3000. See the average expense breakdown based on categories.

  • Property Damage:           $1,916
  • Portable Generator:         $650
  • Lost Wages:                   $310
  • Spoiled Food:                $160
  • Hotel:                           $108
  • Emergency Supplies:      $76

The most significant costs hit the owners who faced property damage – spending money on repairs to sump pumps, basement flooding and general clean up.  Property damage and other associated costs can be prevented by a backup power solution.  If your area commonly experiences power outages, it may be worth investing in reliable standby power from a home generator to help prevent any potential costs that power outages can cause.

Stay Protected with Backup Power from GE Standby Generators

Now that you’ve read about the expensive consequences that can come with power outages – or perhaps you’ve experienced them firsthand – it’s time to learn how you can protect your home and family from them.

With unit prices starting below $3000, GE Home Generators are one of your best bets to help guard against power outages, whether they’re caused by hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards, or even an uncertain connection to your power grid. Generators work by automatically switching on backup power when you lose connection to the power grid, to provide electricity to your lights, major appliances, and other power needs that you prioritize. It switches off when your power is restored, providing an uninterrupted stream of power to your home.

Unlike portable generators, a standby generator doesn’t require storing fuel, refueling (interrupting your service), turning it on/off or plugging in individual appliances. You can stay safely indoors during a storm and rely on your backup power solution for the duration of the power outage.

You can learn more about how generators work, and use our generator size calculator to determine what size generator will work best  for your home. If you’re interested in learning more, or if you’re ready to purchase a home standby generator of your very own, find a GE generator retailer or GE dealer today!