Loss of power can be damaging for businesses, especially those that are ill-prepared and do not have a backup power source. Investing in a standby generator can help your operation continue during untimely outages and minimize your financial setbacks while simultaneously keeping your staff and customers safer.
Learn more about emergency generators and how you can optimize them with a device called an automatic transfer switch.
Exploring Your Emergency Generator Needs
Does your business require continuous power? Some examples of organizations that need to keep their facility's lights on and their systems running around the clock include:
- Data centers
- Retail stores
If you're unsure if your business needs an emergency standby generator, consider the following questions.
Is Your Location Prone to Outages?
If your business headquarters is in a city that historically deals with power failure due to factors like inclement weather or delicate power grids, you may need a backup generator. Repeated utility loss can lead to costly downtime and adversely impact your productivity.
How Long Do Power Failures Typically Last?
Along with the regularity of power outages in your region, you should also consider how long these failures usually last. If it takes days for crews to restore the electricity, your business could face significant losses. For example, you could lose valuable inventory if you sell food products that require refrigeration and the power goes out for multiple days.
What Financial Impact Does Power Loss Have on Your Operations?
Consider the possible financial consequences of your business losing power. You must account for the following costs:
- Lost sales
- Power restoration
For instance, retail stores can't open their doors to customers if there are no lights or a digital point-of-sale system. That means the business may miss out on expected sales and still have to pay employees for their time, despite not having any customers in the store.
Does an Outage Create Safety Issues for Your Team?
Another crucial consideration is safety. Outages can pose a significant threat to operations that work with heavy machinery or in dark areas. Factories, hospitals and manufacturers are all examples of businesses that can become unsafe without power.
Some industries have specific requirements for backup power needs to avoid issues related to safety and well-being during an outage.
What Backup Power Source Equipment Does Your Business Need?
A standby generator can get your business through an outage with minimal downtime. By using an automatic transfer switch for the generator, you could seamlessly continue operations during a power failure without missing a beat.
What Is a Transfer Switch?
A generator automatic transfer switch is a device that can sense power failures and switch a power supply from the primary utility to a standby generator on its own. They are self-acting and intelligent pieces of equipment that help businesses keep operations running despite an outage.
If you manually switch over to your backup generator, your business could still face downtime while the process finishes. With an after-hours power outage, someone would have to travel to your facility and switch over to the emergency power source. However, an ATS does all the work for you as soon as it senses a failure, providing you with more peace of mind.
How Does an Automatic Transfer Switch Work?
A backup generator transfer switch works by constantly monitoring the electric voltage on your primary power supply. The device behaves as the brain of your business' electrical system. When it detects lower-than-normal voltage and frequency, indicating power loss, the ATS immediately shifts to your standby generator.
If the device functions correctly, your business will never miss a beat, and the power will remain on during the transfer. The ATS circuit initiates the automatic shift to the generator and then back to the primary power source when it is finally available.
The Importance of Having an ATS for Backup Power Systems
Using an automatic transfer switch can be highly beneficial for businesses. Explore the importance of these devices and how they can help your operation in multiple ways during an outage.
Dealing With Emergencies
Having an ATS can protect your business during emergencies. Whether you are dealing with the dangers of severe weather or a medical crisis, a power outage can be daunting for your team.
When you use an ATS and backup generator, you can address these high-stress situations better with lights, phone lines and other helpful technology readily available.
Your business needs its power supply to be reliable and ready when you are. You can minimize and even prevent costly, unplanned downtime by installing an automatic transfer switch. These devices can seamlessly keep your power on, so you can maintain productivity and continue serving your customers as usual.
Managing Fewer Responsibilities
Another advantage of having an ATS is managing fewer responsibilities during an outage. Instead of hunting around the dark for your generator or asking emergency personnel to switch your power over to the backup system during hazardous conditions, your business' power source will transfer by itself.
Plus, you can keep your business' generator and automatic transfer switch location somewhere away from customer-facing areas. No one will need to access it during a power outage, so it can remain in a remote area away from your facility.
Maintenance Requirements for an ATS
To keep your ATS in peak operating condition, your business will need to perform some regular maintenance tasks.
- Inspections: You should conduct visual inspections of your transfer switch every few weeks. Ensure all cables are intact and that all the parts are functioning properly.
- Cleaning: Do not forget to have a professional clean and lubricate your automatic transfer switch switchgear as part of your maintenance cycle.
- Running tests: You should also have a professional regularly perform a series of tests, such as resistance and operational testing, to ensure your ATS works properly during an unexpected outage.
Turn to Thompson Power Systems for Your ATS and Electric Power Generator Needs
For more than 60 years, we have provided customers in Alabama and Northern Florida with high-quality electric power generation equipment. Our generators and automatic transfer switches can support your business during a power outage or failure.
We want to help you find the right pieces of equipment for your applications. Our experienced experts are reliable and here for you. Our services extend to ongoing maintenance, repairs and a vast range of replacement parts.
Are you interested in learning more? Explore our selection of equipment or reach out to us today.