If you are like most homeowners, you probably don’t give much thought to your home’s electrical system until something goes wrong. And when it does, you quickly realize that you are not prepared for a power outage. A good quality home generator can help to prevent such disasters by providing backup power during an emergency. And not only will it keep your lights on, but it can also run other essential appliances like your refrigerator and stove. So, investing in one is one of the smartest things you can do for your home and family.
But with so many different models and types on the market, how do you choose the right one for your needs? Here are 6 important factors to consider:
When choosing a home generator, the first thing you need to consider is its power output. This will determine how much power the generator can provide during an emergency. Most generators have a power output rating in watts or kilowatts. You will need to choose one that is powerful enough to meet your needs. But be careful not to choose too large of a generator. It’s important to remember that a generator that is too powerful will use more fuel and generate more noise than one that is properly sized for your needs. So, it’s important to do your research and find the right balance between power and efficiency.
Run time is the amount of time the generator can run on a full tank of fuel. Depending on the size of the generator, this can range from a few hours to several days. If you live in an area that is prone to extended power outages, you will need a generator with a long run time. Thus, investing in a larger generator is probably a good idea. Some of the most popular Westinghouse generators have run times of up to 20 hours on a full tank of gasoline, while the newest WGen models are even more efficient. Keep in mind that run time will also vary depending on the load you are putting on the generator. So, if you plan to run multiple appliances at once, you will need a generator with a longer run time.
The next thing to consider is the type of fuel the generator uses. The most common types are gasoline, diesel, and natural gas. Each one has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Gasoline is the most common type of fuel used in generators. It’s relatively easy to find and relatively inexpensive. However, it can go bad over time and it’s not as efficient as other fuels. Diesel is another popular choice for generators. It’s more expensive than gasoline but it’s also more efficient and has a longer shelf life. Natural gas is by far the most efficient type of fuel, but it can be more difficult to find and may require special installation. So unless you have a natural gas line already hooked up to your home, it’s probably not the best choice for you.
The noise level of the generator is another important factor to consider. If you live in an urban area, you will need to be particularly mindful of this since your neighbors may not appreciate a loud generator running all night. There are two ways to measure a generator’s noise level: sound pressure levels (SPL) and sound power levels (SWL). The SPL is measured in decibels (dB) and it tells you how loud the generator is at a specific distance. The SWL, on the other hand, measures the total amount of noise that the generator makes and is measured in watts (W). Generally speaking, the lower the SPL and SWL, the better.
Another important factor to consider is portability. This is particularly important if you live in an area that is prone to hurricanes or other natural disasters. If you need to evacuate your home, you will want to be able to take your generator with you. There are two main types of generators: stationary and portable. Stationary generators are typically larger and more powerful but they are not meant to be moved around. Portable generators are smaller and can be easily transported if necessary. Keep in mind that even the most portable generators can be quite heavy, so make sure you choose one that you can comfortably move if necessary.
Maintenance and Storage
Finally, you will need to consider the maintenance and storage requirements of the generator. All generators require some level of maintenance, but some are easier to maintain than others. For example, generators that use natural gas generally require less maintenance than those that use gasoline.
Additionally, some generators come with special features that make them easier to maintain, such as self-cleaning filters. When it comes to storage, you will need to consider both the size of the generator and the fuel type. Some generators can be quite large and may require special storage facilities. Others may be able to be stored in your garage or shed. So depending on your available space, you will need to choose a generator that is the right size for you.
While there are many factors to consider when choosing a generator, these six are some of the most important. By taking the time to understand your needs and doing your research, you can choose the perfect generator for your home. And with a reliable generator in your arsenal, you can rest assured knowing that you and your family will be safe and comfortable even during the longest power outages.