Archive for the ‘u’ Category

One Plug Hurricane Peace of Mind
August 18, 2007

The door bell rang just after 8:00am on a weekday morning. What’s up I wondered as I headed for the door, looked out the window and saw a tall man with a hard hat and clip board. “I’m here to install your ‘One Plug,'” the guy told me. “Damn you guys are fast,” I said as we both laughed. I had placed the order just days earlier. Within in 15 minutes the technician had placed the “One Plug” on my Florida Power & Light electrical meter. He then put red, green and yellow stickers next to the switches in my breaker box. He showed me the basics and asked if I had any questions and within minutes was on to the next job.
My pal Bruce turned me on to “One Plug.” So far the “One Plug” project is a little known service that FP&L offers to provide a direct electrical connection from your portable home generator to your house. In case of a hurricane and power loss you do not have to go through the hassle of multiple, unsafe extension cords, open windows and plugging and unplugging what ever you want powered. Using a 7,200 watt generator you can power most of your critical home appliances except for your central air conditioning.
A number of my friends have had electricians or handymen put in similar devices but I was always a little leery about the safety. When, as Bruce suggested, I checked the FP&L website and realized the power company was backing the project, I was convinced to give it a shot.
The “One Plug” is expensive, a little over $900 for the device, installation and special power cord that hooks up a portable generator to your electrical box. But, we reasoned, it was the power company putting in the device. They were sanctioning the “One Plug.” It case anything went wrong then there was a number to call. I like that and to us worth the extra bucks.
A week later I hooked up our generator, followed the easy instructions, snapped off the breakers that had a red sticker, and sure enough power reached the essential appliances. The generator barely broke stride as the house powered up.
Florida Power and Light has been pretty low key about “One Plug.” It is a pilot project offered only in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. Check out the FP&L website at to get the details.
Got to tell you that it was reassuring to hear the refrigerator humming away and our little room a/c tossing out cool air. After Hurricane Wilma we were without power for 13 days. I do not want to go through that again without back up power. If nothing else, like all hurricane preparations and plans “One Plug’ does give you peace of mind that you have the means to cope with whatever a hurricane may bring.