The manufacturer has teamed up with Briggs & Stratton to introduce a new line of whole-house standby generators that can be purchased at The Home Depot. Smaller and more affordable than traditional systems and 50 percent quieter than most portables, the generator will turn on automatically when utility power fails and comes equipped with a power management system that balances the demands of most small- and medium-sized homes. Cost: from $2,900 for a 10 kilowatt unit. Standby Generators by GE.