Homeowners who live in regions prone to power failure may make use of a generator to stop the annoyances of being without electricity.
Obviously, places that don’t have electrical service in any way, including camping sites and structure, may need generators too.
The generators are well suited for powering up electronic equipment during tailgating parties and camping trips, enabling power tool use at distant occupation places, and supplying electricity to lights and home appliances during power outages.
A portable generator is an excellent power option should you need electricity for tasks away from the house or should you not want to invest in a standby generator. They can offer electricity for small appliances, TVs, power tools and lights while camping.
They’re versatile. You may use them for crisis electricity at home, for electricity in distant places where utility power is not available, or for recreational functions, like camping or boating.
They range in price between a couple hundred dollars to several thousand dollars determined by characteristics and the capability.
The 10 Best Rated Portable Generator Reviews
The PowerPro 56101 Generatoris highly reputable and you’ll be able to depend on it in any certain scenario.
It’s design to run with half load capacity for more than 5 hours in merely one complete tank of only 1 gallon supplied.
It is portable that makes it perfect in just about any camping and outdoor activities like RV, camping and tailgating.
It’s physically small and weighs just 36 pounds when electricity is an immediate demand so that everyone can comfortably take it everywhere.
The DuroStar DS4000S is a compact, yet powerful generator. It is great for camping, RVs, home backup power and more.
This machine has a nice compact design, making it easy to move around if needed. Delivers all the power needed to run your home in case of an emergency.
Along with it’s compact design, the DS4000S generator weighs in at a fairly lightweight 93 pounds, which makes it easy to move. This means it is perfect for times when you need to move the machine around often.
It has a 7.0 horse power air cooled overhead valve engine with a recoil start that cranks out 3,300 constant running watts of power ,and capable of producing a peak wattage of 4,000 watts,
The DS4000S runs for a long time on a single full four gallon tank of gas, which is especially good if there is a power outage. Some people even got as much as 16 hours out of a single four gallon tank running on 50% power.
It is very quiet, especially compared to many other generator of a similar or even a more powerful wattage output. The heavy duty steel frame has four point fully isolated motor mounts for smooth and quiet operation.
The power panel features the main controls, including start switch, volt meter, and circuit breaker. In addition, it features an automatic low-oil shut off to guard the engine.
It offers two 120V, 20A to supply power to all of your home appliances, plus one 120V, 30A outlet for high powered tools.
Other features include a recoil start, super quiet muffler that reduces engine noise, and automatic low-oil shut off to protect the engine. An optional wheel kit is also available for the DS4000S, enabling easy portability. Backed by a 1-year limited warranty.
It’s small and simple to steer ,particularly with the optional wheel kit, this really is a vital accessory for virtually any homeowner who does not have a power backup system.
Many consumers would recommend this generator for a large array of different uses. It able to help you and you family make a wise and cost effective choice to help get through your power outages.
- Easy to use and quiet
- Compact and cheap
- Easy to read fuel gauge
- Low oil shut-off protects engine.
- Super quiet muffler reduces engine noise.
- No watt or amp meter
All in all, the DuroStar DS4000S is a cost effective and very reliable generator. I highly recommend this portable generator for your home basic needs.
3.Champion Power Equipment 42436
The Champion Power Equipment 42436 1500-Watts Portable Generator is the most affordable in line that supplies sufficient electricity for emergency backup functions.
This unit is light weight, small in size, good looking & surprisingly quiet! I would HIGHLY recommend this product if you need a small easily portable generator to run lights, and small power tools, or for a quickl short run emergency genny.
The generator is made from 80cc OHV engine that could produce 1,500 watts of maximum power in a solid steel framework for smooth processes and longer life span.
One complete tank of the adorable generator outstanding fuel efficiency, can survive for over 10-hours of constant use supplied with 50% load.
This generator that is impressive is Silent operations with just 65dB noise level that does not affect anyone of fellow campers or your neighbor. As a result of its lightness it can take by one adult individual making it perfect to bring along at campsite.
It is constructed of high quality materials, over head valves and cast iron sleeve and the generator is machined alunimum, not stamped steel.
It has double rubber mounts for zero viberation. After 5 hours of contineous use at 3/4 load it used less then one gallon of fuel and the generator body was warm, not hot!
It was packaged in 2 layers of very heavy cardboard and foam liner which could handle drops and extreme shipping abuse. It starts easy, makes the transition from no load to full load and back again very smooth.
it is quiet, lightweight and portable. with 1200 Watts Rated, 1500 Watts Maximum output. It can run lights, TV and refrigerator all at the same time. Great for running 1-2 power tools. Lightweight-only 56 lbs. Quiet-only 65 Dba.
it comes with a large full color seven step easy start guide. If you are considering purchasing this unit make sure what you expect to operate fitts into the watt range.
Also, for the camping, or working in a remote location, this is the perfect genny if you don’t want to spend the money on a Honda or equivalent.
Overall, the Champion 42436 is a quiet and easy to use generator, it is great for camping , and emergency situations. it can provides portable, quiet power for campsites, RV and cabins.
If you are looking for a portable generator that is portable with high efficiency, dependability and silent at an extremely affordable cost, the Champion Power Equipment 42436 1500-Watts Portable Generator is ideal for you.
4.Yamaha EF2000iS Portable Inverter Generator
The Yamaha EF2000iS is the best money can buy in portable generators. Quiet, gas sipping, long running, stable power producing life saver when the power goes out. it is very efficient and quiet, it is able to generate up to 2,000 watts of clean AC power.
It can run up to 10.5 hours continuously without refueling and uses premium technologies to maximize fuel efficiency.
The EF2000iS is a very high quality unit, nicely designed. it has a fuel gage and is a hair lighter , and liked the styling better. Specs are so close it’s a tie. the Yamaha unit specs a bit quieter in “eco” throttle but the Honda specs a bit quieter at full power.
The most impressive thing about Yamaha EF2000iS is how quiet it is. Even at full engine speed you can stand about 6 feet away and have a normal conversation without raising your voice, or talk on a cell phone without undue distraction. It features an “eco” setting which tapers down the engine throttle and noise when full load isn’t required. At half-throttle or less, from about 6 feet away it is about half as loud and amazingly quiet.
The Yamaha EF2000iS 2,000 Watt 79cc OHV 4-Stroke Gas Powered Portable Inverter Generator can be taken anywhere you need AC power. The compact design may be a bit deceiving as it producing 2,000 watts of peak power and 1,600 watts of continuous power. Its eco-friendly Smart Throttle Technology and sound damping glass wool insulation makes it a huge plus for the green crowd.
Whether you are planning a weekend trip to the lake or tailgate at the big game, the Yamaha EF2000iS generator is capable of producing all the electricity need, while not being so obscenely noisy. Its lightweight design makes it extremely portable as well.
The four stroke gasoline powered engine and generator produced an amazing 2,000 watts of peak power and 1,600 watts of continuous power and it is light enough to carry anywhere you need it. The Smart Throttle Technology cranks down engine during lower power usage means that the engine uses far less fuel over a period of time.
To help it run much quieter, Yamaha uses a sound dampening glass wool material in the casing. It also uses bumper on the bottom to help prevent sound transference. Both of these makes it run quiet enough that you can hold actually hold a conversation while being only six feet away.
As part of our research for this review we found more than one hundred customer reviews posted online. From the reviews we found that it received an average rating of 4.7 stars out of a possible 5.0 stars. The few lower ratings it received was because the customer either received a defective unit or was expecting more from the unit than they got.
it’s an Inverter as well, you can also safely power computers, charge cell phones and iPods, run a tv and dvd player, and plenty of other things, if that’s what you’re into while camping, or in an emergency situation.
It starts up really easy. Mine started first pull right out of the box (make sure to put oil in it first, it’s not included), and still does every time. If you run it on Eco Mode (tv’s, appliances, ect.) but in full power mode, meaning you’re constantly getting the amped up rpms for more amperage, the one gallon tank lasts for about 6 hours or so. I’d figure that it’d almost double that in Eco mode, and it’s twice as quiet. You can stand right next to it and it’s like a little humm.
- Quiet operation, perfect for a campsite/tailgate
- Eco-mode, saves fuel and even quieter
- Clean power, safe for delicate machinery
- Does not ship with required engine oil
The Yamaha EF2000iS 2,000 Watt 79cc OHV 4-Stroke Gas Powered Portable Inverter Generator delivered as advertised and the overwhelming majority of the customers who left a review highly recommended it.
It produced enough consistent power to run everything in a travel trailer all day without having to refill the fuel tank. It was perfect to use at a remote job site and it delivers enough power to run all of their power tools.
This generator is super quiet and the engine runs really smoothly. If you need a medium duty Inverter-Generator, I highly recomend it. You will enjoy it. It’s also very light and compact. Transporting it isn’t a problem at all.
If in case an additional silent and portable generator is what you are trying to find, the Yamaha EF2000iS 2,000 Watt Inverter Generator that is portable is perfect for you. It can bring you maximum power of 1,600 rated output signal which does provide your little refrigerator or 2,000w, TV and charge your ipod.
The Yamaha EF2000iS works unbelievably quiet; you and your buddies can discuss the usual conversation beside the generator. It’s possible for you to charge your batteries during the class of camping with its 12v DC output signal that’s not bad for RV’s, boat and auto. It comes with a focused control panel for you to get on each of the buttons for easy operations. It begins in only a one pull, thanks to its vehicle decompression setup that makes a start up simple.
Exceptional silent operations this generator, fuel efficiency, dependability, durability, portability and its characteristics stands out of the rest. Yamaha is liberally giving a 2-year guarantee for your additional peace of mind when you purchase it.Check Price On Amazon
5.All Power America APG3014 2,000 Watt Gas Portable Generator
The Watts Portable Generator is totally satisfied those who are searching for the greatest cost that can power moderate scale family up. This generator can produce 2,000w of 1,400w of constant power and rated power.
The APG3014 generator is for those who need streamlined, electricity that is adequate.It’s effective at managing computer, blower motor, fridge, central heating furnace igniter, toilet exhaust fans and lights all when you hits.
If you want to learn more about the great thing about the nature trough camping you’ll be able to depend on the APG3014, it is silent, lightweight, and pretty powerful for straightforward electrical-powered actions. The All Power America APG3014 is certainly a sensible selection if you are presuming to get a low-cost portable generator.
If you’re looking for a small generator, the All Power 2000 Watt Portable Generator is a winner! it is a lightweight and portable generator with durability and undeniable power. Take this generator camping, tailgating or use for backup power in your house or mobile home.
Its peak power of 2000 watts makes the APG3014 big enough for a 4 stroke engine doing away with the mixture of gas and oil that is required by smaller 2 stroke generators.
I would recommend this unit to anyone that needs a small but powerful generator. I noticed that most of the generators this size were rated at half the power output or at most 2/3. It also has some cool accessories that can help with jump starting your car or hooking up to other batteries that need recharged.
- Low-oil shutdown feature
- Relatively lightweight
- Four-cycle engine
- it works great and easy to install
- Mixed opinions about customer service
It’s got enough power to handle starting a motor like your fridge in a power outage which is something most would want and one like this is the minimum size for that job having at least ~1500 watts .This isn’t into the $300+ category or ones that are so big you need wheels on them to save your back while moving it .
With it having a 4 stroke engine you don’t need deal with mixing gas/oil like some other small units need, but do need to remember to check the oil. If you’re looking for one of the smallest/cheapest generators that can still run nearly any 120V item, the All Power America APG3014 is a good choice.
6.Champion Power Equipment 46539 Wireless Remote Portable Generator
The Champion 46539 generator is a excellent intelligent home owner type generator with remote. it has a time delay for loads at start up, and an advanced load shut off when shutting off. the sound level is relatively quiet, and the engine runs smooth. It easily works from in the house.
It seems to have a good muffler and enough power to run everything in the T/T, microwave, TV, coffee maker, and the furnace all the things you need when out in the wild, “roughing” it! With the highs at 50 degrees, didn’t try the A/C.
This machine features a 196cc overhead valve 4 cycle gas powered motorthat is capable of producing a peak output of 4,000 watts, and a continuous output of 3,500 watts. The generator features a decent sized tank which is great for running it for hours at a time. On 50% power and a full tank, it can run for 12 hours.
The Champion Power Equipment 46539 4,000 Watt Portable Generator is a reliable, yet cost effective machine for all of your portable power needs. This gas powered generator has the all the necessary power to deliver emergency electricity for your home or job site.
Weighing 140 pounds, this is a fairly compact machine, meaning it is not very troublesome to move around. To make moving it much easier it comes with a wheel kit, which includes 8-inch wheels. No matter what you need it for, this Champion generator will do the job.
The remote start is a really nice feature. Also, and this is important – when you utilize the remote start, the generator will crank up and wait for the engine to stabilize before supplying power to the outlets. It’s a nice feature because you can leave your extension cords plugged in, and when the engine is stable, power will automatically be supplied to your appliances. Beats having to go outside when it is cold or dark and fumble around with plugs.
The noise level was acceptable. You did have to raise your voice if standing next to the generator, but it was not as loud as other generators I heard during the storm.
There is no 240v outlet on this generator – not that one was promised, but in case you were looking for that (220/240), this isn’t the generator for you.
As part of our research for the Champion Power Equipment 46539 4,000 Watt Portable Generator, we were able to find numerous customer reviews. From these reviews it received an average rating of 4.6 stars out of a possible 5.0 stars.
- Compact design for easy maneuverability
- Decent sized fuel tank
- Powerful gas engine
- CARB compliant, available in California
- We did not find any cons to speak of.
Champion Power thought of everything, they included everything you will need including the wheel kit and initial bottle of oil.
In the end, the Champion Power Equipment 46539 4,000 Watt Portable Generator is a lower end portable generator. The 4 cycle gas powered engine is capable of delivering 3500 watts continuous power and 4000 watt peak.
7.Westinghouse WH7500E Gas Powered Portable Generator
The Westinghouse WH7500E gas-powered Portable Generator, which delivers 7,500 running watts of power and a maximum starting output of 9,000 watts while providing the owner with many features and benefits usually found on more expensive models.
it is nice looking unit and reasonably priced for what it delivers. It provides quiet operation via Westinghouse’s Pulse-Flo muffler, includes four standard household outlets ready to conveniently power your devices, able to run several times with various equipment/rv etc.
The WH7500E is also easy to start thanks to its one-touch electric start system, and it includes an LCD hour meter. It also includes everything to get started right out of the box, including a wheel kit and handle kit, oil, funnel, and tool kit. This generator is backed by a three-year limited warranty, and it’s EPA-approved.
- Longer run time than most;
- 12 hours on a 6.6 gallon tank (at 50% load)
- 3 year warranty.
- Hour meter to monitor run time and oil changes.
- Engine is designed to run on up to 10% ethanol gas!!!
- Low oil auto shut off.
- Electrical overload protection.
- REAL Customer service – Real knowledgeable people that answer their phones!
- It only has a single 30amp outlet, depending on your setup if you’re using it in the field, you may want more flexibility with another 30amp outlet
Starting it up was a simple push of the button and once the choke is off the engine runs super smooth and is relatively quiet. as long as it works this well when the power goes out, it is great. Would highly recommend to anyone wanting to purchase a good portable generator.
8.Hyundai HY2000si Portable Inverter Generator
Any search of inverter generator reviews will pop up Honda and Yamaha. They are both excellent generators – compact, quiet, built to last, and capable. They are also horribly expensive!
While it’s true that Honda and Yamaha are the top inverter generators, the Hyundai HY2000si provides outstanding service for MUCH less money. it is very quiet, about exactly the same level of noise as Yamaha.it was rated at 2,000 watts continuous/2,200 watts surge; it had good reviews as to build quality; and it was on sale for under 500$;
As far as performance, it is just slightly louder than the Honda, starts easily & performs as stated. I would have given it 5 stars, spend the extra $500 on the Honda & you will not go wrong because they make a great product, if not, the Hyundai is a good exception.
It will automatically shut down in case of a low oil situation, which is a feature not often found at this price point.
Other nice touches are a clearly labeled control panel, an extra spark plug, battery charging cables, rubber anti-vibration pads on the feet.
Also, this HAS a built-in inverter which is a good thing if you want to run high-end electronics. It will help provide “clean” power so you do not fry your computer or TV while you tailgate.
The only problem is that it is a bit too heavy for my wife when she tries to pick it up or move it around, it weights about 70 lbs. but other than that I would recommend this product to anyone who’s looking for a good generator for half of the price the others sell for.
It runs very quietly and started out of the box on the first pull. it works great, easy to use, reasonably quiet (and MUCH quieter than a conventional generator), uses inverter technology that produces clean power that won’t damage electronics, and reasonably portable. Highly recommend.
9.Generac 5943 GP7500E Portable Gas Powered Generator
The Generac 5943 GP7500 Generator is a great machine for all of your portable power needs. Powerful enough to run the essential household systems in case of catastrophic power loss. It includes the benefit of easy electric start, no need to wear out your arm pulling a cord.
This machine is 2 feet, 8 ½ inches long, and 2 feet, 5 inches wide, it is fairly large and weighing in at a hefty 130 pounds, this generator is fairly heavy. Whether you’re planning a trip, or your power gets knocked out, theGenerac 5943 GP7500E generator will make sure that you are never left in the dark.
The 420cc, 3600 RPM engine that powers this generator can produce up to a peak of 7500 watts.. With an eight gallon fuel tank, you will have enough power to run for a fairly long time with no problem. With a full tank your generator will last up to a lengthy 12 hours on 50% power.
Unfortunately, this generator is not CARB compliant, therefore is not available for customers in California.
- Semi compact design for easy mobility
- EIght gallon tank
- Powerful gas engine
- Not CARB compliant, not available in California
Popular Opinion on the 5943 GP7500E
While conducting our research of the Generac 5943 GP7500E Generator, we found less than 50 customer reviews posted online. This generator received an average consumer rating of 3.8 out of a possible 5 stars.This Generac generator assembles quick and easy, and is an very reliable product for a large assortment of uses.
The generator ran perfectly and was very useful during long periods without power, but is unfortunately fairly loud. It’s perfect for those times when storms come through and knock out your power, no more having to worry about things spoiling until the power comes back. Even while running this Generac generator for upwards of 75 – 100 hours straight still yields very good results.
All in all, the Generac 5943 GP7500E Generator is a reliable generator that can be used for a large array of purposes. It does require some assembly, and is fairly noisy, but if you can get past that it does pack a punch.
10.DuroMax XP4400E Gas Powered Portable Generator
The DuroMax XP4400E Gas Powered Portable Generator is best for the jobsite where powering saws, drills, and other equipment is critical, but you can also depend on it for emergencies at home–insuring your essential appliances are running smoothly, reliably, and without interruption. it is the great price under $400 for a 4400 watt generator.
The DuroMax XP4400 series, is not only the essential generator to safeguard your family, but can provide you power when needed for work and play as well. This rugged workhorse is ideal for the jobsite where powering saws, drills, and other equipment is critical.
It’s equally at home on vacation, perfect for powering your RV, keeping you and your family supplied with all the necessary conveniences of home. it has an automotive type muffler which helps keep the noise down. so It is fairly quiet for a generator, but keep in mind quiet is a relative thing.
The DuroMax XP4400E 4,400 Watt Portable Generator is fairly powerful, reliable, and cost effective generator. This machine features a powerful 7 horsepower engine and a 4 gallon gas tank, meaning you can run it for hours at a time with no problems.
The XP4400E features a compact design and weighs 116 pounds, so it is not too troublesome to move around. Whether your power gets knocked out, or you’re planning a trip, this DuroMax generator won’t leave you in the dark.
This generator’s 7 horsepower overhead valve 4 cycle gas powered engine can produce a peak output of 4,400 watts, and a continuous output of 3,500 watts. The machine’s 4 gallon gas tank is perfect if you need to use it continuously for a long period of time. On a full tank, the XP4400E can run for a lengthy eight hours on 50% power.
it is really nice looking and sturdy. The extra handles and wheels make it easy to move around. Compact and not too big like some. Easy set up and it fired right up. Make sure you run it every once in a while for 10 minutes to charge the battery and use fuel stabilizer in your gas.
The published numbers are not really too realistic but that is pretty common for small portable generators. It is supposed to handle 3500 watts continuous and 4400 watts surge.
During our research of the DuroMax XP4400E 4,400 Watt Generator, we found just under 150 customer reviews posted online. The product received an overall rating of 4.1 out of a possible 5 stars.
- electric key start feature – like starting a car
- available DC charging ability
- dual voltage (120/240) capability
- 900 watts extra surge over 3500 running watts
- wheel kit is included
- NEMA L14-30R outlet for high power needs
- automatic voltage regulator (AVR)
- easy gas draining for storage
- low oil warning and automatic shut-off
- inconvenient oil drain
- no run-time meter
The DuroMax XP4400E is a very durable generator, especially for the price. The machine overall is fairly quiet and the electric start makes it a very easy product to use. Capable of running many large and small appliances as well as lights any problems, ran for 10 hours straight without issue.
All in all, the DuroMax XP4400E 4,400 Watt Generator is a reliable and cost effective generator. It can be used for a large range of purposes. It outputs 4,400 watts at it’s peak, and 3,500 watts continuously, and is fairly quiet.
So, overall I do highly recommend the DuroMax XP4400E generator, especially if you are looking for an emergency backup generator. Just keep in mind that its published wattage numbers are a bit overstated. If you are expecting it to be a Honda, you will be disappointed, but considering what it costs I think it is a very good deal for the money.
11.DuroMax XP10000E Gas Powered Portable Generator
The XP10000E’s fully loaded power panel includes two 120-volt, 20-amp standard household outlets to supply power to all of your appliances as well as a powerful 120/240-volt, 30-amp twist lock outlet for high-powered tools.
A 12-volt DC output with leads functions as a charger for batteries and other rechargeable devices. It also includes one 120-volt, 30-amp twist lock outlet and a 120/240-volt, 50-amp heavy duty outlet .
They provide 3 and 4 prong twist plugs, 12 volt insert leads for charging a car battery and a small toolkit. The key falls out in the “off” position so just tie-wrap it to the frame so you do not lose it. tape the extra key to the frame also. Other items they do not mention: a nice functional fuel tank gauge. There is also a charge indicator to let you know the unit’s battery is being charged after starting.
- Arrived on time
- Good condition
- Wasn’t hard to set up
- Price was good and that’s why we chose it.
- it is a little hard to start with pull cord
What it won’t do: Electric Stove, Dishwasher, Clothes Dryer. I guess it MIGHT run these, if other loads were minimized, but I wanted more of the “creature” comforts all at once. I was willing to forgo the major power hogs, until the utility power came back on.
What it will do: everything else!
While it’s weak in some details (faint, hard-to-read manual, and the fact that its a chinese model) it comes with more features and options than you could ask for, at a very reasonable price.
Things to Know Before You Buy a Portable Generator
Buying a portable generator can be a daunting process.
What’s the wattage capability of the generator and will it support your needs, including startup spike power needed by some gear? How Much Electricity Do you Want noisy is the generator? Are there sound limitations in your neighborhood? What kind of fuel does it use? How big is the fuel tank and the number of hours of operation will it supply? Is the generator simple to move around? Does it have built in wheels and handles for portability?
Yet, you can take control by getting arranged and being educated. Here is an easy checklist to use in choosing the correct generator to take care of your own home and family to assist.
— Ascertain wattage needs. Ascertain how much power you want for the items you care about. For help, try our power choice worksheet. Don’t forget you will also need a transfer switch to power the circuits in your home if you opt to purchase aportable generator.
Starting wattage is required for when they’re running at their highest degrees of power consumption or appliances at startup. Constant electricity is the wattage needed under regular load for procedure of these appliances.
Standby generators create from 5,000 to 25,000 watts or more of power. You will need to pick a generator that provides constant wattage and adequate peak for the appliances in the circuits you must power.
A little 1,000-watt portable generator may be all you want for recreational functions. And you also may use up to 8,000 watts if using a generator to power tools on the jobsite.
— Comprehend electric terms. You will see a lot about amps, volts, watts and much more. Review the glossary for definitions.
— Decide: Standby or portable? Considering your budget, benefit, and power needs, choose which sort of generator you would like.
— Take good care of home electricity dilemmas. Locate gas line and your existing electric service panel to target any potential difficulties prior to purchasing a generator. portable generators should be used with atransfer switch.
— Perform product comparisons. Compare run times, power outcomes, and prices, along with what’s included in those prices, such as guarantees, accessories, support and setup.
— Establish funding options. Some retail stores offer funding choices for generator purchases. FREE Super Saver Shipping is offered by Amazon and provides no interest financing on select things.
— Consider contained things. Is it true that the generator come with maintenance or warranty bundle? What about oil, a power cord, wheels, and funnel?
— Consider added prices. How much more will it cost for setup by a qualified professional? Will you require an accessory like a cover for protection from the elements or a transfer switch?
— Create your financial plan. Generator costs fall across a wide range, so determining how much you’d like to spend is not unimportant.
How Do I Install and Operate a Generator?
Standby generator: Standby generators are wired directly into your current electrical system and generally require professional installation. Installing a standby generator by yourself may void the unit’s warranty or violate local building codes, so research these issues before you begin. The basic steps are as follows.
First, mount the unit outside your home on a concrete pad or plastic mounting pads that come with the generator. You may need a contractor to pour the concrete foundation and mount the generator.
Next you’ll need to contact your gas or propane company to connect the unit to its fuel source.
Last, you’ll have to call an electrician to hook the generator up to your home’s electrical system. Some generators come with pre-wired kits that make it easier for the “do-it-yourselfer” to do the wiring. In most cases, it’s probably safest and best to have this work done for you by a licensed professional.
Once installed, operation depends on whether you’ve used a manual or an automatic transfer switch. With an automatic transfer switch, if the generator senses a disruption in utility power, it turns itself on and takes over power production until utility power resumes. With a manual transfer switch, you have to handle these chores yourself.
On a standby model, you’ll have to change the oil and filters on a regular basis. Many manufacturers provide maintenance kits to make this easier.
Portable Generator: Setup for portable generators is easy. Just make sure to keep the exhaust port pointed away from your house, and to have the proper distance from your windows and other house openings. If you’re not planning to hook your portable generator into your home or building’s electrical system, there is not a lot of setup involved other than finding a safe place outside your home for the generator. Because portable generators create carbon monoxide, you should never run them inside a building, beneath a window, or near any opening to your house (doors, vents, etc.).
Once situated, fill the generator with the required type of gasoline and oil and start the unit. Startup can be as simple as pressing a switch, but on some you’ll have to yank a manual recoil pull-cord.
Of course, you will have to plug the appliances you want to power into the generator, refuel it as necessary, and shut the generator off when you’re finished with it.
If you want to connect your generator to your home’s electrical system, you’ll need a manual transfer switch. Make sure your generator’s manufacturer supports connecting your model to a transfer switch. If supported, comply with your model’s safety and warranty guidelines as well any local building codes during the installation. In general, it’s best to hire an electrician to handle the wiring of your home to the generator and transfer switch.
However you use your generator, over time you’ll have to change filters, oil, and spark plugs. Plus, you should not store gasoline in the generator when you’re not using it. Either run the generator empty or add a gasoline stabilizer that will prevent the gasoline from “gumming” up. Many manufacturers sell tune-up kits for their models.Follow the instruction manual closely.
All generators have the same basic function: to supply power. In many other regards, however, generators can vary to dramatic extents.
Before making a purchase, you must consider how you want to power the generator, your voltage resources and needs, and where the generator will be located.Any of these variables might disqualify or privilege a certain model, so it is important to approach the decision holistically.
It is also important to consider installation and maintenance costs, as these less obvious factors can add a lot of expense and frustration if not handled correctly. Despite the potential pitfalls, a satisfying generator can be found through a little research and a structured plan. Stick with the recommendations in this guide, and you’ll be drawing your own power from a new generator faster.