Being Ready for the Power Outage
Testing the Generator and Preparing for Possible Emergencies
Once you have found a proper generator suitable for your needs, you need to follow simple tips, which will help you keep your home appliance powered through any power outage, storm or other circumstances:
- Wattage of the generator: Calculate the total wattage of the appliances you need to keep running during emergencies in order to determine and find out which appliances can be powered, according to the generator’s wattage;
- Perform a testing: Test the generator to ensure that it is fully functioning and you know how to use it in emergency situations;
- Setup and storage: Store the generator in a safe place, which is easily accessible. Make sure you do not run the generator inside the house or close to the windows or doors;
- Check the generator: Run the backup generator from time to time to keep the engine fresh and lubricated;
- Fuel: Ensure fresh fuel and fuel stabilizer supply;
- Transfer switch and extension cord: If you use a transfer switch wired right into the electrical system in your house, it is the best variant for powering the indoor appliances. In case extension cords are used to power indoor items, you enhance the risk of poisoning with carbon monoxide. The engine’s exhaust can enter the house as a result of opening the window, door or cord opening. A professionally installed home transfer switch is the best solution, especially in case the power outages are frequent. Cords that are connected to the portable generator can power only outdoor items. Make sure the cord features enough amps needed for carrying the total load of the connected appliances to avoid overloading the extension cord;
- Cool down: The moment you have finished testing or using the generator, give it some time to cool down before you store it;
- Cover the unit: Keep the generator covered if you do not use it. It will help the item stay away from dirt and dust.
Safety as the Key
Having a portable generator at home, you need to be aware of primary safety measures you need to follow while operating and storing a unit. Follow these instructions when you operate the machine:
- Invest in CO alarm;
- Use the generator outside. Using the unit inside the enclosed area can be dangerous. It is not recommended to operate the machine in the garage, even if the door is open;
- Prevent the exhaust from the generator from getting into windows, air leaks or doors. This is an effective way to prevent carbon monoxide gas from entering the house;
- Read the user manual before you start using the machine. Learn about operation, maintenance and safety;
- Do not fuel the generator when it is still hot or running.
Power outages are quite common, especially during major storms and hurricanes. Losing power during one of such weather problems can cause no heat, no light, spoiled food, discomfort, anxiety and other complications. A portable generator is a solution, as it can take over during the outage, keeping all the essential appliances running. With these checklists and tips, you should be ready for any emergency outage circumstances.