Signs It’s Time to Upgrade Your Standby Generator

Whether you’ve purchased a generator in the past or moved into a home with a standby generator already outfitted on the property, you know how critical it is to have backup power when there’s an outage. Being without electricity isn’t just an inconvenience — it can compromise your appliances and wellbeing, too.

While home generator maintenance and partnering with a trusted provider can extend the life of your unit, generators don’t last forever. At a certain point, you’ll have to purchase a new generator to replace the one you currently have. However, determining when you need a new unit isn’t always easy if you don’t know what to look for. Fortunately, our generator installation team has put together a list of the top signs it’s time to upgrade your standby generator:


The older anything is — from appliances to vehicles and beyond — the more likely it is to fail. Ultimately, the age of a generator isn’t determined by its physical age but instead by how many hours it gets used per year. The average generator is designed to last for 10,000 to 30,000 hours of use.

If you lose power repeatedly and rely on your generator, you’ll have to replace it sooner than someone who only runs it a few times yearly. For light-duty use, you can expect a properly maintained unit to last roughly three decades.

Constant Repairs

Aside from preventative maintenance to ensure it functions properly, you shouldn’t have to repair your generator more than once or twice a year. If your generator breaks down almost every time you use it, it’s more than likely time to replace it. If it’s only a few years old, check to see whether it’s still under warranty.

Issues Kicking On

A new generator should start up quickly as soon as it’s needed. If you have a system where the generator is designed to come on automatically if the power goes out, you shouldn’t have to go out and fiddle with it excessively. Once or twice may signify a moving part that needs to be repaired. More than that, especially within one year, you should start thinking about replacing your generator.

Increase in Fuel Consumption

Your generator’s manual should contain information on expected fuel consumption. If it has not been maintained or is starting to buckle under wear and tear, usage will begin to rise, and excessive fuel usage will be reflected through staggering bills. Some parts might be able to be repaired or replaced, but eventually, the whole system will need to be swapped for a new one.

Inconsistent Power Output

One of the most substantial appealing factors of a standby generator is steady power. If you’re using the same appliances and devices that you’ve always used, yet the power flickers or brownouts occur while using the generator, that’s a telltale sign it’s time to upgrade your standby generator. While there’s always the chance a part simply needs to be replaced, it could also mean your generator is nearing the end of its useful life.

Live Life Uninterrupted With a New Standby Generator

Whether you want to upgrade from a portable generator to a whole-home unit or you’re curious as to whether your existing system’s glory days are behind it, it pays to partner with experts. When you turn to Colonial Generators, you can rest assured you’re teaming up with specialists that know how to diagnose all generator issues and make informed recommendations on next steps.

For more information about securing reliable power, including how much it costs to install a backup home generator, get in touch with our team today!