ServiceMax Blog: Archive for the ‘Generators’ Category

Giving Serious Thought to a Whole-House Generator? We Can Help!

Monday, February 11th, 2019

generator-residentialThe recent polar vortex dropped Chicagoland into an extreme deep freeze, bottoming out the temperature at a record-breaking low. We hope you and your family made it through this intense weather—you’ve probably never loved your home heating system as much as you did during this time!

Now that the freeze of the vortex has passed, you may be thinking about what might have happened if the power went out in your home during the extreme cold. It’s not a pleasant thought. In fact, it’s bit terrifying. Unfortunately, extreme weather conditions are when power outages are most likely. During this warmer stretch of weather, you might be giving serious thought to having your home’s electrical power protected with a whole-house generator. This is great planning, and we offer professional services to install a whole-house generator in Wilmette, IL or elsewhere in Chicagoland. Don’t hesitate to call us to ask for more information.

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Why We Recommend Generator Installation

Monday, December 18th, 2017

natural-gas-generatorElectricity is such a basic part of our lives that we rarely stop to think about all that it does for us. It’s simply always there when we flick on a switch, turn on an appliance, or plug in a phone or laptop to charge. But what if that electricity suddenly vanished? Stopped working and didn’t turn back on a few minutes later? What if it stayed off for hours or even days? Think about the impact an extended power outage like that would have on your life and on your family.

Unfortunately, long blackouts are a possibility during winter. Downed power lines, accidents at power plants, or grid failures can mean whole blocks going black for extended periods. You can’t prevent these power failures, but you can protect yourself with a generator.

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Have You Scheduled Generator Maintenance Yet?

Monday, November 6th, 2017

emergency-home-generatorOne of the important jobs to have done before fall is over and the serious cold weather starts in is to have your home’s heating system maintained. One of our technicians will come to your house and give your furnace or other heater a thorough inspection and take care of necessary cleaning and adjustments. This helps ensure the best heater performance during the winter, with little chance of repair troubles and needless energy waste.

If you have a whole-house standby generator to protect your home in case of a power outage, you should also arrange for generator maintenance as part of your regular seasonal maintenance.

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Get Your Generator Maintained before the Serious Cold Hits

Monday, December 12th, 2016

The temperatures in Chicago are dropping rapidly into the 30s and 20s, and of course it’s only going to get colder. We hope that you’ve already scheduled an inspection and tune-up for your heating system (it’s always best to have this arranged in the early fall) so that your heater can have an easy time for the rest of the season. But have you arranged for maintenance for your home’s standby generator? If you haven’t, call our generator specialists right away!

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Why Do I Need Generator Maintenance?

Monday, August 15th, 2016

We’re still enjoying the summer weather, but now is also a good time to think ahead toward the end of the year and period when you may need to rely on your whole-house generator in case of an extended power outage. Sometime during the next few weeks is an excellent period to arrange for your annual generator maintenance.

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What Happens During Standby Generator Maintenance?

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

If your home has an automatic standby generator, it’s essential that you schedule annual maintenance for it. After all, what good is an emergency generator that will see to your home’s electric needs during a power loss if you can’t count on it to actually work when the time comes? Regular generator maintenance is like and insurance policy for an insurance policy, essentially.

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Don’t Forget Maintenance for Your Generator This Fall

Monday, November 16th, 2015

We’ve already talked a bit this season about the importance of scheduling heating maintenance in preparation for winter. You definitely don’t want to get caught without a working heater during a cold Illinois winter. But there’s another important maintenance job you should take care of this fall. A heating system won’t work without electricity (even a modern gas furnace uses some electrical power), so make certain that the whole-house generator that protects your home’s electrical system during a power outage is also ready for storm season.

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3 Reasons to Consider a Whole-House Generator

Monday, July 27th, 2015

What do you do when you lose power? If you’re like most homeowners, you rummage around the junk drawer or garage for your trusty flashlight and set to work either finding the other flashlights (and perhaps some candles) and possibly your portable generator (hopefully you have some spare gas). But more and more homeowners are considering whole-house generators for their homes. To many, this seems like an obvious home improvement. Few things are as convenient as being able to fire up your whole-house generator to run not only your lights, but also major appliances. Here’s why you need one for your home.

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Is It Time to Repair Your Generator?

Friday, January 30th, 2015

The main reason to own a whole-home generator is to be able to power your home should a power outage occur; if this help isn’t available from your generator when you need it, there isn’t much point in having a generator. Unfortunately, because generators aren’t used constantly, it may not be clear whether or not a problem exists with your generator until you need to use it. However, there are some steps you can take to determine whether or not you may need generator repair for your home in Wilmette.

Common Generator Repairs

Here are some of the more common problems that can develop with your whole-home generator:

  • Loss of lubrication – all the moving parts on your generator need adequate lubrication to operate correctly; without proper lubrication, these parts will grind and can eventually break.
  • Electrical problems – wiring and spark plugs inside the generator can corrode over time, which will affect the operation of the generator.
  • Blown generator fuses – your generator has its own fuse box that helps it to run; blown fuses will hamper its operation and require replacement in order for the generator to be operational.
  • Problems with the fuel line – the fuel line is integral to your generator’s operation. If it is bent or kinked, or has developed an air bubble, the fuel feed may be impeded.

Signs of Problems

So how can you know about some of these problems? Here are a few tips:

  • Leaking – if you see any kind of leaking or puddling around your generator, there is a good chance is has sprung a leak.
  • Visible wear on electrical components – some corrosion of the electrical components may be visible, so if you see frayed wiring or rust around terminals, call for an expert.
  • Burning smell – if you smell a burning odor while testing your generator (or using it), shut it off immediately and schedule an appointment with a repair person.

Test on Your Own

One of the best ways to assess whether or not a problem has developed is to test your generator every 3 months. Simply turn it on and let it run for 10-15; while it’s running, inspect the outside and stay aware of any strange noises or odors.

And if you’re in need of professional generator service in the Wilmette area, give Malek Heating & Cooling a call today.

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Protection for Your Home with Whole-House Surge Protectors

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Power outages can pose serious problems for your home and family, especially if they last for an extended period of time. Some of the reasons for loss of power from the grid include trees falling on power lines, severe wind conditions, lightning strikes, floods and heavy rainstorms, accumulation of ice and snow, accidents due to construction digging, and even interference from wildlife. Using a whole-house generator to shield your home from a long-term outage is wise planning and will provide you with peace of mind during the times of the year when the frequency of outages begins to rise.

Here is something else to consider: many of the above causes of power outages are also sources of massive power surges. You probably already connect the idea of power surges with lightning strikes and downed lines, but any event that could cause an overload of the power grid or a loss of power could also send a huge power surge into your home that could cause damage to appliances, especially precision equipment like laptops and home entertainment systems. A small power strip at an outlet can offer some protection from this, but not always.

At Malek Heating & Cooling, we advise that homeowners look into whole house surge protectors in Skokie, IL as an adjunct to their new generator installation. These systems installed into your electrical panel will guard your electrical system from both outside power surges as well as any malfunction that might occur with the generator. It will also help with the smaller surges that can occur without you realizing it, and which contribute to slow wear and tear on appliances.

These smaller surges are worth looking at a little closer, because many homes suffer from them. Whenever a large appliance in your home (such as a refrigerator or air conditioning system) makes too large a demand on the electrical circuits, it causes a momentary imbalance that sends a power surge through the lines. If you notice lights flickering whenever a powerful appliance turns on, then you are dealing with a power surge.

Worry about power surges is another reason that you must have professionals install your whole-house generator. If an amateur picks the wrong size unit of generator for your needs, the generator could cause a dangerous power surge in your home when it comes on, knocking out your lights and other appliances and possibly damaging them so that even when the power is restored, they won’t come back on.

Keep Malek Heating & Cooling in mind when you are thinking about whole house surge protectors and generator installation in Chicago, IL. Let our trained technicians know about your generator needs: we will keep your family out of the dark. Give us a call today.

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