Things to Consider While Buying a Standby Generator

Standby Generators are permanently installed at your home and they are great to have when the power goes out. This type of generator can run on propane or natural gas and they provide the fantastic feature of automatically kicking in as soon as the power goes out. This type of generator also provides other alluring features, such as running a self-diagnosis that will inform you when maintenance may be needed. Certain standby generators send email or text message reports, which is extremely convenient.

Unfortunately, people seem to make purchase standby generators during times when there is concerning weather and major storms. As a result, it is not uncommon for people, in general, to make decisions out of desperation when buying a generator that simply is not suitable. It is vital to have a solid plan when buying a standby generator and during setup, it is crucial to follow safety precautions to ensure that the generator will function as it should. Here are a few important things that you should consider while buying a standby generator.

Be Aware Of Your Priorities

Before you can buy a generator, you will need to determine your priorities as generators are sold by the power output, which is measured in watts. The power output of the generator will determine how many appliances and lights can be powered at once. However, the consistency and the quality of the power output will establish just how well these things will run. To be able to run only the basics in your home, roughly 5,000 watts would be suitable. Standby generators usually range from 5,000 to 20,000 watts and you can discover more about standby generators at Homethods.

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It would be a great idea to make a list of things that you would not want to be without when the power goes out. By doing this you will be able to add up the number of watts you will need from a generator and prevent the disappointment of buying a generator that simply is not powerful enough.

Here are some rough estimates for basic essentials:

  • Lights – 60 to 600 watts
  • Refrigerator – 600 watts
  • Computer – 60 to 300 watts
  • Portable Heater – 1,500 watts
  • Air Conditioner – 1,000 watts

Hire An Experienced Electrician For Installation

Standby generators do cost a bit more than portable generators, although, they are built to last and usually a long-term solution to power outages. When it comes to installing the generator, it is best to hire an experienced electrician to ensure that the generator is installed in the most ideal location and they can also assist with permits and noise restrictions. What’s more, attempting to install a standby generator by yourself can be a dangerous task, proper installation requires an experienced professional.

Deciding On The Ideal Fuel For Your Generator

You will need to decide on one type of fuel to use for your generator that is most suitable for your individual situation. While propane provides fewer risks when storing in comparison to gasoline, natural gas will be able to provide an unlimited power supply.

Do You Need A Transfer Switch?

A transfer switch will safely connect your standby generator to the circuit panel through one cord. It is essential to have a transfer switch to prevent potentially endangering utility workers. Opting not to have a transfer switch can also risk damaging the generator and your appliances.

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You will need to have a professional electrician install the transfer switch properly. Transfer switches are usually designed with a 220-volt input, therefore, your generator will need to be 5,000 watts or more. The switch will automatically turn off when your power is back on. While it is vital that you have a transfer switch installed, if you are hoping to save a bit of money, you could opt to rather install an interlock device that will be slightly more pocket-friendly. An Interlock device is roughly $100 cheaper and it will also take less time to install.