Backup electric power can be a part of any preparedness plan. Find out what you need to know about using backup power. View the Backup Generation Fact Sheet (PDF, 360 KB).
Though PG&E is not responsible for providing backup power before or during a Public Safety Power Shutoff, we want to provide as much support as possible for homes and businesses interested in energy solutions.
Backup electric generators can operate as a stand-alone power source and some require interconnection to PG&E’s electric grid. Backup power is typically fueled by solar plus storage, batteries, natural gas, gasoline, propane or diesel fuel. It is the customer’s responsibility to understand how to safely operate the equipment and to read the equipment manufacturer instructions, warranties and all other information related to the operation of the equipment.
Ready to go solar? Learn more about your options.
Solar customers, please note: During an electric power outage, your solar system will not function unless designed to work with a battery or standby generator. For more information, call your service provider.
Interested in backup power programs? Learn more on the “Explore Backup Power Options” tab below.
Backup power can keep the lights on, help appliances stay running, save perishable food, and power essential equipment and electronics during a power outage.
Generators can be expensive, noisy, and can pose safety hazards. It's important to understand how to safely operate your generator or battery before an emergency occurs. This means doing regular safety checks and being sure you have enough fuel to last a few days.
Please be aware that operating a generator may be subject to Air Quality regulations. To find the air quality regulator serving your area and obtain more information please visit arb.ca.gov/app/dislookup/dislookup.php.
Do you own certain devices or equipment that need to keep functioning in the event of a loss of power? How crucial is it for you to have power during an extended outage? This is especially important for customers who are dependent on life-support equipment or require special heating or cooling needs for a medical condition.
Are there community ordinances where you live or work that restrict or limit the decibel level allowance for outdoor equipment?
Generators can cost thousands of dollars. Take any immediate needs into consideration as you examine which generator option may be the best choice for you.
If you rely on electric or battery-dependent medical technologies such as assistive technology, breathing machines, a power wheelchair or scooter, and home oxygen or dialysis, it is critical that you have a plan in place for an extended power outage.
Power outages can occur at any time. Ensure that your employees, tenants and customers know what to do during an emergency and that you have plans for backup power.
If you decide to purchase a generator or battery, explore what will work for you. Factors to consider include:
Generators and batteries can produce enough electricity to power your phone and laptop or power your whole home.
Your preference may be determined by environmental concerns, accessibility, affordability, and available space for secure generator storage.
If you don't understand how to use your generator or battery, you risk damaging your property, endangering your life and endangering the lives of PG&E employees who may be working on power lines in your community.
FOR YOUR SAFETY: Operating a portable generator improperly can contribute to fire ignition risk. Users should follow all safety instructions provided by the manufacture before operation. Never connect any generator to another power source, including PG&E power lines.
Eligibility requirements include:
Program partners will first reach out to eligible customers to conduct a phone or email assessment. The assessment surveys customer emergency preparedness plans and medical device information to connect the customer with the best battery available for their needs.
The Backup Power Transfer Meter (BPTM) Program is a free offer available to PG&E customers who are located in a Tier 2 or 3 High Fire-Threat District and/or served by an Enhanced Powerline Safety Settings (EPSS)-protected circuit. Customers located in these areas must have a compatible generator (XLSX, 23 KB). It is good for a limited time only and subject to change at any time. The offer is not transferrable.
BPTM Program participant eligibility and site qualifications include:
This program is observing new policies as stated below effective August 9, 2022. The stated rules prior to this effective date are no longer applicable to this program.
PG&E is offering eligible customers a $300 rebate on the purchase of a qualifying product (generator or battery) to prepare for power outages.
Customers who are enrolled in PG&E’s CARE or FERA program will receive an additional $200 rebate. The total rebate amount cannot exceed the purchase price of the product, nor can it include taxes or shipping costs.
Generator and Battery Rebate Program Eligibility Requirements (must satisfy all to qualify):
Notes (please review these completely to ensure eligibility):
Please Note: The rebate application must be submitted within 12 months from purchase date of the qualifying product or by December 31, 2022, whichever date is sooner.
PG&E does not make any endorsements or recommendations. Below is a representative list of suppliers and contractors that may be able to help you. This list is not inclusive. Contact retailers directly for additional information, including FAQs, pricing, and financing.
In contrast to generators, with portable power stations and battery technology you can charge anything from phones to refrigerators and everything in between. These solutions work indoors and out, without the noise, fumes, or maintenance of a traditional gasoline-powered generator.
For more information on portable power stations and battery technology visit PG&E's Energy Action Guide.
PG&E provides ﬁnancial incentives for business and residential customers installing new, qualifying equipment for generating and storing energy.
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