Monsoon season in Scottsdale runs from the middle of June until September, though we often don’t get the full force of these storms until July. It’s important to be ready to deal with the heavy rains and their effects on daily life. Going out can be dangerous as roads are flooded and power lines are often down where vehicles and pedestrians are traveling. At home, flooding is a concern, along with the loss of electrical power.
- Power loss
- Drain backups indoors and out
- Sewer line backups
- Septic pump failure
- Water damage to wiring
- Power surges
- Extended power blackouts
Blackouts can occur both during the storms from downed lines and thunderstorms, and afterwards as crews cut power to safely address loose wires and damaged poles. Backup power generators are part of many Scottsdale residents’ lives during this time, both to keep daily life closer to normal, and to power protective devices such as security systems and sump pumps.
What Powered Devices Can’t You Do Without?
You’ve probably thought about lighting and refrigeration, but there are many ways your home uses power that are essential for modern life. Your septic system or sewer line may have an ejector pump, your sump pumps are critical, even your network router may be essential to you. Ask your licensed electrician for help with planning backup power such as battery-powered UPS and generators, and for a list of typical electrical needs you might not have thought about.
Reasons for Power Outages During Monsoon Weather
Lightning strikes on your power lines, at generator stations, or hitting trees that in turn down power lines can cause sudden power outages. These types of failures often produce power surges that damage electrical equipment inside your home as well. They may also affect power company equipment or your power panel, requiring repairs of affected gear before life returns to normal.
New and Continuing Outages After Storms
In the news after a monsoon hits, there are typically stories about downed power lines that take some time to repair. If your home is in an affected area, it could be days before your power is restored, depending on repair crew capacity. One source of surprise outages is the cutting of power by company crews to allow the removal of cars trapped by downed power lines. You may find that skies clear and everything is returning to normal, then the power is out again for a while.
Being Prepared for Monsoon Emergencies
It can give a false sense of security when storms occur less frequently during some monsoon seasons. They can be just as disruptive, and recovery from storm-related damage can be quite costly. Keeping on top of your weather-related preparations is always a good idea, even if it has been a while since the last storm. That’s especially true of protecting your home against flooding, and ensuring that you have the backup power you need.
There’s a wide range of power resources for when commercial power is interrupted, sometimes for days. Some homeowners use basic generators supplying minimal power with a manual transfer switch, others have automatic backup power generators that sense power loss and supply power rapidly. Power capacity can meet partial needs such as food refrigeration and lighting, or everyday life including HVAC systems. Having a checklist is critical not only as storms approach, but on a weekly basis to make sure backup power is ready.
Basic generators need to have a proper manual transfer switch for safety, and a safe location outside the home where they can operate without carbon monoxide risk, even if they have sensors built in. More advanced systems require regular self-tests plus technician testing and maintenance. Fuel checks, battery and battery charging systems, and other critical components should be verified by professionals.
Do You Have the Backup Power You Need?
Your family’s backup power needs may change over time. You may realize that a basic portable generator doesn’t meet your needs, and that automatic power has its advantages, in particular supplying sump pumps while you’re away. Generator capacity can keep the lights on, or provide the comfort you need up to several days or more when the storms have passed and hot days have returned, but power is still off.
New Power Needs for Scottsdale Homes
If you’ve had an upgrade to your home’s electric service for new equipment such as EV chargers or tankless hot water, it’s time to think about your backup power as well. Adjustments in generator capacity may be needed. We can also help with dynamic power management equipment that prioritizes your power usage during times of high use. Lighting and surge arrestors for the whole house protect you against damage during thunderstorms, and surges from disruption of power lines.
Sump Pumps and Drains
When heavy rains fall, your sump pumps are going to work hard. Homes often have more than one for backup, or to more rapidly address a rising water table to protect finished basements. A professional inspection can make sure yours is up to the job, and suggest the best replacement if it’s had a long service life, about eight years. If the pump discharge pipe isn’t properly installed, or it gets moved during yard work, the pump will not work as planned.
An underground installation ensures reliable discharge for peace of mind. Drains around your property should be ready to handle high volume. Your sewer or septic connection needs to be in good shape so backups don’t occur from the rains. If you don’t have a generator, backup battery power for your sump pumps is an excellent option.
HVAC, Electrical, and Plumbing Cleanup After Storms
If your air conditioner is a mess after blowing rain, water leaks have affected your wiring, or sewer line leaks caused backups, it’s time for cleanup. At AC by J, we have professionals to address all of these needs and more with one call.
Making an After-Storm Success and Concern List
After the storm, you may encounter drain and wastewater system problems, electrical issues, and the need for a generator servicing, especially if it’s been operating for an extended time. This is also a good opportunity to make note of anything you weren’t fully prepared for, to see whether additional measures could be taken for the next monsoon.
Preparing for Increasingly Severe Weather
Weather professionals have been predicting increasingly severe monsoon weather over the years, and in recent years headlines are reflecting their accuracy. It’s important to consider whether your preparations are adequate for right now, or have an extra measure of care for unexpectedly heavy or long-lasting rains.
Keep the Conversation Going with Your Scottsdale HVAC and Electrical Resource
At AC by J, we’re ready to help you prepare for monsoon weather in Scottsdale, as part of our wide range of HVAC, plumbing, and electrical services. Since 1983, we’ve been the company to call here and in surrounding valley areas, and your expert resource for all your concerns and questions as a homeowner.