They look like an AC unit
Every so often people in the Columbia area are faced with a long term power outage.
SCE&G does a great job, but there is only so much that can be done during a major outage. Ice storms and the edge of hurricanes that sweep the coast have wreaked havoc in the past.
Todays generators are much more sophisticated than the old rope start ones people associate with generators.
They look a lot like a central air conditioning unit and work fully automatically. There is just a short delay before the unit starts up and you have generated power.
When the power is restored the unit senses it, and turns itself off and switches your home back to the power company lines.
They run on natural gas, so in most emergency situations you would still have a fuel supply. They also can run on propane but this requires a separate tank and the propane being delivered to your home.
Even with short power outages it is nice to know your power could be on and your home well lighted and secure.
Quite often large amounts of food are lost during power outages. A home generator can keep your freezer and refrigerator going until the outage is over.
There are a lot of good reasons for having a home generator. They will improve the quality of living in your home and also increase its resale value.