How Americans are prepping for more frequent power grid problems

NEW YORK — A third of Americans believe severe weather events will leave their homes without power more often, compelling them to take action to protect their families over the next five years, a new survey reveals. The poll of 2,000 homeowners finds three in four have made improvements to their homes to address severe weather concerns, 73 percent of whom made modifications proactively to prevent future damage to the home.

Homeowners state they’re the most concerned about tornadoes (44%), hurricanes (30%) and thunder and lightning storms (30%). Their top concerns as a result of severe weather are structural damage to their home (65%), power loss (58%), and the health and safety of their family/friends (57%).

Sixty-four percent were concerned about power loss in their home — so much so that 59 percent would prioritize buying a portable power supply over other essentials like extra food (54%) and water (53%).

Infographic: on people preparing homes for frequent power outages
(Credit: SWNS)

How people are preparing for power outages

To address concerns about their homes, the survey, commissioned by Generac and conducted by OnePoll, finds homeowners implemented improvements including repairing or replacing the roof (34%), getting a power generator (32%) and improving the drainage system (24%).

If they were to lose power today, nearly half (45%) say that compared to options like relying on an existing backup power source they already have (27%) or depending on a home solar system (7%), they would be stuck simply waiting for the utility to restore power. Over one in four (29%) say they “don’t feel confident” their local power provider can keep the power going during severe weather events. 

“As evolving climate patterns cause more extreme weather events, homeowners are assessing how power loss may affect their homes, and how they can plan ahead before it does,” says spokesperson Kyle Raabe, president of Consumer Power for Generac Power Systems, in a statement. “Millions of Americans are left in stressful, potentially dangerous situations amidst severe weather while they wait for power to be restored. No one should ever have to feel powerless at home.”

The new data indicates homeowners’ concerns while simultaneously demonstrating a knowledge gap in home power. Half reported they understand how their home is powered only somewhat, a little, or not at all. 

Electric avenues

The survey also looks into the awareness Americans have and lack when it comes to energy use habits and how electricity works within their home. Only 32 percent somewhat understand how their home consumes electricity, while 30 percent somewhat understand how their home is powered and 28 percent somewhat understand how their home is connected to the larger electrical grid.

Only two in five (45%) believe their homes need the most power in the evenings, from 6 p.m. to midnight. Likewise, 34 percent believe their homes consume more than the standard average of 886kWh per month.

However, the lack of knowledge isn’t for naught: many respondents monitor and attempt to manage energy consumption within their homes.

They do so by checking their energy provider’s statement on a regular basis (50%), estimating energy use based on personal observations (29%) or by using smart energy devices (28%).

Survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 American homeowners was commissioned by Generac between October 11 and October 16, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).


  1. What if it’s not “evolving climate patterns cause more extreme weather events” so often stated but the evolving unstable power grid caused by the push to go green and cut back on CO2 emissions?

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