August 31, 2018

Backup generators for aging in place

Posted In: Construction in Avon, Ohio

When the power goes out, it could be hours or days until it is restored.

Standyby power system in Bay Village, Avon Lake is a smart idea

Some 90 percent of people aged 65 and older would rather live in their own homes as they age, making it all the more important to have a standby power plan. A major storm or electric grid outage could knock out the power for conveniences and essential appliances that people, and especially the elderly, rely upon.

While an American household may experience only one or two outages a year averaging three hours, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, longer ones due to violent storms can last days.

A windstorm on Sept. 14, 2008, spawned by Hurricane Ike knocked out power to more than 234,000 Northeast Ohio households. In parts of Bay Village and Avon Lake, power was not completely restored until a week later. With utility poles often located in resident’s back yards, utility crews were not able to use trucks to reach affected spots, and had to climb poles using boots and belts, a more time-consuming process.

A hailstorm caused more than 100,000 households to lose power in northern and central Ohio on Nov. 17, 2013. In the years 2016 and 2017, members of a Bay Village Facebook group reported 13 and 14 outages, respectively, in various city locations from a variety of causes.

These incidents all raise awareness that a standby home generator makes sense for those worried about uninterrupted power for their loved ones.

Making a list will help you decide your needs for backup generators for aging in place in Bay Village, Avon Lake and other areas. Does your loved one need an oxygen generator or a home infusion pump?  Or for those with sleep apnea, what about power for a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) device?

Home medical devices need an uninterrupted source of power.

While refrigeration of medicines is an obvious need, don’t forget common items such as an electric hospital bed or lift chair. Don’t forget air conditioning for loved ones and pets—including air pumps and heaters for your fish aquariums.

While many of these devices have battery backups, such provisions are for the short term. For a longer power outage, a home standby generator or invertor generator may be a better solution.

While less expensive than home units, portable generators run on fuel such as gasoline and are often noisy. They can usually produce up to 2,000 watts, enough to power a refrigerator, TV, computer and 5 to 10 lights. It’s easy to see that powering an entire house can require 20,000 watts, when you include everything under the roof: refrigerator, freezer, central air conditioning, microwave oven, electric range, big screen TV, computer, dehumidifier, lighting, and security system. By tallying the wattage of all these devices, you’ll get an idea of the capacity you will need.

A home generator offers peace of mind during a power outage, as well as keeping critical appliances operating.

The advantage of the home standby generator, other than its ability to power many devices for a long period of time, is that it will kick in automatically, being directly connected to your electrical panel. It also has protection to prevent a power surge when the electricity comes back on, protecting sensitive appliances.

Portable generators need someone to start them. They also need to have appliances plugged directly into them and require refueling as needed. Fuel will need to be stored on site as well.

Some cities have established regulations for home generators. In Bay Village, those regulations require than the generator should be placed in the rear yard, but the side yard is acceptable under certain conditions.  Landscape screening or fencing is usually required. Only natural gas generators are permitted. Generators must not generate noise louder than 75 decibels at 23 feet, about the sound of a vacuum cleaner.

Avon Lake follows the 2017 Ohio Building Code, which is less restrictive than the Bay Village regulations and takes into those generators than use gasoline or propane.

Prices of home standby generators have come down recently, and range from $2,000-$6,000. Installation typically adds $1,110 to $6,300, according to

When a major storm or other incident causes a power outage for days, living without a generator can become frustrating and dreary—and dangerous–very quickly. A backup power supply is the solution not only to keep the electricity on and the anxiety low.

When it comes to backup generators for aging in place in Bay Village and Avon Lake and other areas, Sciarappa Construction will make your project happen. We’ll discuss your ideas and analyze your needs, taking into account any home modifications needed along the way. With over 40 years of experience in construction projects, Sciarappa Construction offers the highest level of proficiency, quality and efficiency to complete your project.

To get started, it’s just a phone call away. Contact Sciarappa Construction at (440) 930-2882 or by email at We’re located at 32961 Pin Oak Pkwy., Avon Lake, OH 44012.


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aging in place, Avon Lake, Bay Village, blackout, elderly, generator, home generator, medical devices, Ohio, power outage, uninterrupted power