Increase in homeowners seeking back-up generators as gas supply crisis deepens

Electrical services and generator providers said they’ve seen a recent surge in homeowners requesting back-up generators

Thomas Kingsley
Tuesday 21 September 2021 15:20
<p>Rising energy costs are causing consumers to look to alternative means in preparation of a shortage </p>

Rising energy costs are causing consumers to look to alternative means in preparation of a shortage

A growing number of UK homeowners have been making enquiries about back-up domestic generators as the energy crisis deepens.

Four small UK energy companies have already collapsed as a result of soaring energy prices, with business secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, insisting there is “no cause for immediate concern” over the UK’s energy supplies.

UK homeowners, however, have already begun seeking alternative energy supplies in the case that a large shortage does impact consumers across the winter.

London based electrical services provider, Quantum Electrical Services told The Independent that it was now receiving enquiries into domestic generators for the first time.

“Historically you’d only got commercial clients looking for generators for obvious reasons but now it’s coming from domestic customers,” Dan James, CEO of Quantum Electrical said.

He added: “It's been going on for a few weeks, in the last month we’ve noticed people phoning up.

“We’re up 100 per cent on generator domestic instalments, we might do a few each year but now it’s double that. It’s something that people are thinking about.”

Mr James said that customers are taking note of the rise in energy prices and are seeking ways to secure their energy supply in the case of shortages.

Issues with gas supplies, rising costs and a possible hard winter, could provide the necessary components for a “perfect storm,” Mr James said, a scenario where power cuts could not be ruled he added.

Norfolk based generator supplier, Just Generators, has also recorded a spike in customers seeking domestic generators in the last week with customers citing the recent gas supply issues as their main reason for enquiry.

“Since 2020 , we’ve seen a big increase that was the catalyst then with the further release of information recently there’s been another spur,” a spokesperson for the company told The Independent.

“There’s been a two-fold increase in enquiries,” they added.

Just Generators, part of the Calgary Just Companies which supply power and garden equipment across the UK, said customers are making enquiries about domestic generators, “earlier than usual.”

Generators provide a back-up energy supply in the case of power cuts and are routinely fitted in hospitals and large commercial properties such as hotels and shopping centres.

Business secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng has insisted in parliament on Monday that “there is absolutely no question of the lights going out or people being unable to heat their homes,”

“There will be no three-day working weeks or a throwback to the 1970s. Such thinking is alarmist, unhelpful and completely misguided,” the business secretary added.

However, Paul Lawrence who operates an electrical services company across South East England, specialising in specialist domestic generator installations, said he is also already seeing an uplift in queries about backup generators.

Mr Lawrence said customers are showing a “knee jerk” reaction to the energy crisis news with “rumblings of hysteria” building.

10 Downing Street has been warned about a difficult period ahead for Britons due to rising energy costs, with firms stating that the price shock could trigger a three-day week for factories and more gaps on supermarket shelves.

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