A Y2K Just-In-Case Purchase Becomes the Go-To Tool for Power Outages and Portable Electric Power

A Generac GP 5500-Watt Portable Supplying Emergency Power During an Outage Following a Storm

Homeowners Often Rely on Portable Generators for Backup Power During Outages.

Everyone has either heard a story like this or has one of their own to tell. A product they purchased, or their parents or grandparents purchased, is still delivering service years beyond what anyone ever expected. Sometimes people will point to those products made years ago and declare, “No One Builds Them Like That Anymore.” They may be right in some cases. Other products are built to last longer than ever before. When we start with a quality product and take care of it, more often than not, that product will take care of us far beyond our original expectations.

In the years and months leading up to 1999, large and small companies were scrambling to ensure that a computer programming problem called the ‘Y2K Bug’ would not crash their computers. Older computers had limited memory and storage space, and programmers tried to use as little memory and storage as possible. Instead of storing a date as 1999 or 1961 or 1979, they used two digits instead—99 or 61 or 79.

Would banking systems fail? What if the power grid shut down? Virtually any form of business that relied on older mainframe computers and minicomputers was subject to doubt in its viability to perform after the New Year.

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A Y2K Generator Purchase

A Data Center with a IBM Sytem 360 mainframe computer system

An IBM System 360 in a Data Center with 4 Tape Storage Units and two 28 Megabyte Disk Drives. No monitors, the terminal-printer served for input and output.

In December of ’99, many people prepared for the worst-case scenario. They bought heaters and generators, stocked up on non-perishable food, and took their money out of banks.

Bruce bought a Generac Portable Generator just in case the power went out. Who knew how long it could stay off, or even if utilities could restore it before chaos and disorder descended on the world?

“In December 1999 we purchased a Generac portable generator because of all the Y2K hype regarding computers crashing and people losing power. Y2K came and went without incident.”

No one, except possibly a few doomsayers, bemoaned how the year 2000 came and went with little more than extravagant parties and millennial celebrations. People everywhere were relieved that we were not cast into darkness and chaos. For a couple of years, it was easy to pick up a never-used heater or portable generator at a garage sale at a considerable discount.

Other people held onto their purchases. It made sense to prepare for unexpected needs.

“Several years later, there was a major ice storm where my daughter lived in upstate New York.  Hundreds of trees fell on the power lines and thousands of people lost power for days. My wife and I took our generator to my daughter’s house where she ran it for five days until the power was restored.”

How to Use a Portable Generator for Emergency Power

Generac GP 6500-Watt Portable Generator Connected with Generator Cord

A Generac GP6500 with a Generator Cord for Backup Power During an Outage

That five days of emergency backup power probably paid for the generator and a lot more. Power outages leave sump pumps, refrigerators, freezers, lights, or furnaces inoperable. The portable generator purchase paid off. Bruce did the maintenance, drained the tank, and put it back in the garage.

“A few years later, we were hit with some huge storms and our power went out for four days. Thankfully, we had our Generac. I ran an extension cord to the sump pump and kept it running which prevented our basement from flooding. I also ran the extension cord to the water pump and we had plenty of water.”

Bruce used his Generac portable generator for backup power several times in the next few years. He took care of it, and it took care of him when he and his family needed it. Not long ago he loaned it to a friend in need. Not for backup power, but to use where there was no power at all.

“A few months ago, a friend who owns a bulldozer had a link pin for the track break while he was using it in the woods. He needed to weld it, so I lent him the Generac. He took it to his bulldozer in the woods and welded it in the field.”

Portable Generator Safety Rules to Live By

Generac Portable Generator with Safe Operating Advice

Demonstration of Safely Using a Portable Generator for Backup Power

The Generac portable generator that Bruce purchased ‘just in case’ the computers shut down the power grid has paid for itself many times over the years and to this day, serve his home and family with power whenever they need it.

“As I write this, our power is out, and our Generac portable generator is running the sump pump once again to keep our cellar from flooding. Our Generac is now 18 years old. I put gas in the tank, gave it 3 pulls, and it was running! A testament to undisputed quality.”

Bruce has not regretted buying his Generac Portable all the way back in 1999. If you asked him, he’d probably tell you that some things do last a long time and perform just as well, or even better, than products manufactured in the past.

“Thank you and your employees for a totally AWESOME PRODUCT.
Sincerely, Bruce”

It comes as no surprise when Generac proudly states, “Generac Generators are Engineered and Built in the USA with a Customer Call Center in Wisconsin staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week to answer your questions and help solve problems. Generac. Reliable. Dependable. We promise.”

Portable Generator Buyer Guide