Larger, high-rise residential buildings are typically required to have backup power for critical functions, such as the operation of one elevator and a fire-suppression pump. Smaller buildings are not. Backup power becomes even more necessary if residents are sheltered in place during power outages. Critical systems package for back-up generators are a specialty of Mikulka Electric.
Critical Systems Package
Sizing a generator.
Consider what systems will be connected to the generator’s emergency circuit. The higher the power needs, the more complex and costly the system must be. Local codes frequently require that when a generator is installed, it powers emergency lighting, fire-suppression pumps, at least one elevator, at least one sewer ejector and other equipment. In addition to the minimum requirements, consider adding:
- Emergency outlets to charge cell phones and computers.
- Electronic igniters for gas- or oil-fired heating systems.
- Fans and pumps for heating systems.
- Water-booster pumps to deliver potable water to upper floors.
- Sump pumps.
- Telecom systems.
- Cable modems and wireless routers.
- Alarms and security equipment.
- A central washer and dryer.
- Transfer switches.
When utility power fails it is essential to switch to emergency power smoothly and safely. Most systems include a transfer switch which makes this happen.
Automatic transfer switch (ATS)
An ATS continuously monitors electric utility power and automatically switches over to emergency power when necessary, then back to normal power.
Manual transfer switch (MTS)
An MTS must be activated by staff and takes much longer to switch power over than an ATS. Much less expensive than an ATS, an MTS is much more challenging to operate.
There are many types of backup generators, each with advantages and disadvantages. You must consider the needs of your site when selecting an appropriate generator, including the location where it will be installed, fuel storage issues, the amount of emissions it will produce and your budget.
Using backup power
- Employ only a licensed electrician to install and maintain a backup power system.
- For larger systems, consult an experienced engineer to oversee installation and maintenance.
- Install generators and the systems that support them (transfer switches, fuel pumps, etc.) above the DFE.
- Ensure that your building is able to support the weight.
- Minimize noise and vibration of generators to avoid disturbing residents and neighbors.
Operations and maintenance
Develop a maintenance plan that “exercises” the generator regularly and cycles through stored liquid fuel on a defined schedule so you can be sure it will be available and not stale when needed. Train facility staff in equipment operation.
Building codes typically require regular inspection and testing of generators.
Develop a maintenance log protocol, which can be used for manufacturer reimbursement in cases of system failure.
Critical Systems Package
Public and/or large buildings have emergency power systems installed to allow certain electrical components to operate during a power outage. Homeowners are also installing smaller standby generators on their property, especially if they are in rural areas where power restoration after a storm could take days or weeks. Emergency and standby power systems can be fairly simple (for homes) or very complex (for large institutional buildings like hospitals).
Hiring a professional electrician is the safest and efficient way to troubleshoot electrical issues. Mikulka Electricians are always professional and efficient. Insured and trained to do the job right the first time. Experts in the field of electrics with over 25 years’ experience. Prepared with up-front pricing and a lifetime guarantee. We observe all PPE (personal protective equipment) and COVID 19 requirements in to keep our staff and your family safe. Our team of experts will respond immediately to your call for help. Call Mikulka Electric, Inc. for a wide range of electrical services, including indoor and outdoor lighting, electrical heating, electrical repairs, and back-up generators. We service Central New Jersey area. Address 275 RT. 79 Morganville, NJ 07751 https://mikulka-electric.com/contact-us/
Phone 855-645-8552 or 855-MIKULKA