Requirements for Residential Emergency/Standby Generation

Standby generators, also known as backup generators, are becoming increasingly popular because they can power some or all your home’s electricity needs during a power outage.

To learn about the requirements to install a standby generation system and safety precautions, please read the information outlined below and also review CoServ Electric’s Distributed Generation (DG) Manual for more detailed information.


Prior to Installation

  • Members must meet all of CoServ Electric’s membership and service requirements in addition to the requirements defined in the DG Manual in order to properly isolate from the Cooperative’s system.  Members interconnecting standby generators to CoServ Electric’s system agree to the terms of our Tariff for Electric Service and DG Manual.
  • Fill out the Application for Operation of Customer-Owned Generation found on Page 16 in the DG Manual.


  • Member generator installations must meet all local, municipal, National Electrical Safety Code (NESC) and National Electrical Code (NEC) regulations.
    • The Cooperative may, at its sole discretion, prevent the interconnection or disconnect an existing interconnection of generation facilities that cause safety concerns, reliability issues, power quality issues, breach of Cooperative’s meter seal, breach of interconnection contract, or any other reasonable issue. Any disconnection may be without prior notification.
  • Members should understand that standby generators shall not export power (or operate parallel) to CoServ Electric’s distribution system and shall use an open transition transfer switch.
    • Be aware that it is a safety hazard to connect a generator to a home’s electrical circuits without a generator transfer switch automatic-interrupt device, which automatically shuts off the generator when power is restored to the grid.
    • Generators connected in parallel with the electric distribution network can produce voltages that are potentially deadly to a lineman working on the system and/or damage Member’s equipment.

After Installation

  • Know your generator. Read all the information and materials provided with your generator and follow instructions regarding installation, safety, maintenance, and testing.
  • Generator owners are responsible for providing and maintaining all equipment deemed necessary for the protection of member-owned property and operations.
  • Generator owners are responsible for the installation and operation of the facility and will indemnify and hold CoServ harmless from liability for damage to property or person resulting from or arising out of or in any way connected with the installation, inspection, operation, maintenance, testing, and/or use of the generator.


Does CoServ allow backup generators?


Is there an application that needs to be submitted?

Yes, prior to installation, the Application for Operation of Customer-Owned Generation found on Page 16 in the DG Manual and the required application fee listed on page 6 of the DG Manual should be submitted.

Does CoServ sell generators or recommend specific generators?


Is an electrician required to install my generator?

Yes, an electrician is required and should follow all applicable CoServ policies and the current National Electric Code.

Is a plumber required if my generator’s fuel source is natural gas or propane?

Yes, generally the electrician you use will contract out the plumber for you, but that will be between your electrician and you.

Does CoServ recommend specific electricians?


Does CoServ require an automatic transfer switch?


Can I wire my generator into my breaker panel?


Does CoServ allow GenerLink transfer switch to be installed?


What is the GenerLink transfer switch?

A device that allows you to hook up a portable generator to your home as a source for backup power.

Do I need a permit?

Permits are required by most cities or towns within CoServ’s service territory. Please check with your local municipality to determine permitting requirements.

Does CoServ offer rebates on backup generators?