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California Public Safety Power Shutoff Business Owners Guide

California Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) Business Owners Guide

Keep Working Even When the Grid Doesn’t

The utilities forecast that a PSPS could last hours, days or even weeks depending on high wind and weather conditions. How will an hour, day or week without power impact cost your business? What will it cost in terms of financial losses?

According to ITIC’s 2019 Reliability and Hourly Cost of Downtime Trends Survey, on average, each hour of downtime costs a business more than $100,000, while 86% of companies report that the cost exceeds $300,000. Beyond those averages, one-third of companies say an hour of downtime costs them $1 million or more. Layer on the potential human impact of lost wages on your workforce, and the potential costs of PSPS to California businesses is staggering.

The utilities have implemented a joint power outage preparedness campaign: ‘The Power of Being Prepared’.

Step One: Understand Your Backup Power Options

Diesel or gas generators are not the only emergency back-up power available and, when combined with SimpliPhi’s safe, indoor/outdoor battery powered generators (ExprESS & AccESS), precious and often scarce fuel can be preserved during prolonged power shutoffs. SimpliPhi’s commercial, mobile and portable backup power storage solutions feature lithium ferro phosphate (LFP), offering significant advantages:

  • They are ready when you need them. SimpliPhi’s energy storage and emergency power solutions do not require annual maintenance and lose less than1% of their charge on a monthly basis when not in use.
  • SimpliPhi’s energy storage can be used indoors or outdoors without ventilation, cooling or the risk of overheating or fire. LFP does not contain cobalt, the source of toxicity, hazards and ‘thermal runaway’ associated with other lithium batteries. LFP is environmentally benign, non-toxic and safe to use as a personal power source — designed for years of extended use.
  • For businesses who have already invested in fuel-based generators, adding a SimpliPhi energy storage solution can improve generator performance, extend its life, save fuel and extend your energy budget during an outage. With SimpliPhi batteries, a generator changes its role from being a source of primary power to a source of charging power. Once the PHI batteries are charged, the generator is turned off until it’s time to charge again.

By contrast, consider the constraints of using fuel-based generators:

Most of today’s gas station fuel pumps require electricity to operate. Once your fuel reserves have been depleted, it will likely be difficult or impossible to find additional fuel to power your generators.

Fuel-based generators release carbon monoxide and toxic pollutants, making it unsafe to use them inside a business or even in a parking garage. Opening windows does not help — the carbon monoxide in generator exhaust can sicken or kill.

Step Two: Understand Your Solar Array As Back-Up

If you have installed grid-tied rooftop or ground-mount solar without energy storage, you will lose power during an outage. Grid-tied solar arrays feed electricity to the grid, not your business. Adding a PHI battery bank to an existing solar installation will allow you to disconnect or ‘island’ from the grid during a blackout and continue to generate, store and use your own power on your terms until the utility service is restored. Without on-site energy storage, your solar array shuts down along with the grid, leaving you without power.

Step Three: Understand How Much Power Your Business Will Need

How much electricity do you want at your disposal when the grid goes down? SimpliPhi energy storage and management solutions are as diverse as the range of businesses who need them. One company might decide to size its PHI battery bank to provide power only for critical loads like servers and communications, while another could decide to install a large PHI battery bank sized to support an entire facility or a campus’ total utility load. For small businesses or those that rent their facilities, you can keep it simple and select a turn-key mobile energy storage solution to take with you in the event of an evacuation, like the ExprESS.


PHI Batteries

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Hard wired*
  • Modular batteries that can be combined to create a battery bank of any size to power any electricity load

AccESS Energy Storage System

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Turn-key hard wired*
  • Back up whole-home power solution that includes all the PHI battery and inverter equipment you need in one enclosure
  • NEMA-3R rated cabinet can be installed indoors or outdoors

ExprESS Mobile AC Generator

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Turn-key mobile or hard wired*
  • Fuel-free generator alternative
  • PHI batteries and an inverter enclosed in a NEMA-3R-rated cabinet on heavy-duty, lockable casters
  • Sufficient power to operate computers, appliances, power tools and heating/cooling for hours at a time

Genny Emergency Kits

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  • Easy-to-carry briefcase- and roller bag-sized mobile generators that come with their own folding solar panel
  • Sufficient power to operate computers, cell phones, appliances, power tools and emergency lighting for hours at a time

*Initial installation by a licensed C10 or C46 electrician required

SimpiPhi’s applications engineers and I.Q. Certified Installers can help you calculate how much energy storage capacity you will need and what solution is best for you. Little and Big Genny Emergency Kits can be purchased directly from Amazon.

Know Your Manufacturer

When it comes to emergency power, failure is not an option. SimpliPhi’s energy storage and management solutions have been proven in the field for a decade, including by the U.S. military in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Safety is also critical. SimpliPhi’s energy storage solutions are ideally suited for use in regions prone to wildfires because they feature the safest, cobalt-free lithium ion chemistry: there are no toxic hazards, no fumes and no risk of fire from the battery itself. Many consumers do not realize that most other lithium ion batteries contain cobalt — which can be incredibly dangerous in a fire because there isn’t a way to extinguish a cobalt battery that catches fire, and because cobalt fires produce deadly, toxic fumes.

Not only does SimpliPhi have a proven global track record you can trust, our California operations lend us unique insight into the wildfire and PSPS problems and the ideal solutions that home and business owners want and need to be resilient and survive with minimal hardship and economic losses. Through Energize California, we’re committed to ensuring every Californian is truly able to realize the power of being prepared.


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