Choosing an Electric Generator

In times of emergency, it seems that hind-sight is twenty twenty. Suddenly, you become quite aware of exactly what it is that you actually need and what is extraneous in your current circumstances. Luckily, it's easy to think ahead because choosing an electric generator is much more effective if you do not need it just yet. Beside emergency uses, there's also plenty of every day reasons to keep a home generator on hand.

When you are considering what generator is right for your needs, there are several things to consider. First, you will need to know exactly how you plan on using it. The size and power you need will depend on the load requirement. For example, if you normally plan on using the portable generator in your motor home, a smaller 1000 watt model may suffice and still give you sufficient power to run home lights and basic electricity in an emergency. If you want to provide back up for a larger appliance, consider choosing an electric generator in a larger 2000 watt model. A fully functional back-up for your home or business will probably require a 5000 watt or 6500 watt generator. Of course, more power equals higher prices, so you may want to look into used or reconditioned models to save money.

After determining exactly what your power needs are, let's look at the features of the generator. Most come equipped with 120 volt outputs. If you need to operate many tools at a time, you will want to have numerous outlets and switches available. A generator that will operate large appliances like a dryer will need to be equipped with a 240 volt plug.

Also, when choosing an electric generator, be aware of the cost of fueling it. This will effect your bottom line and make a difference in the overall cost of running the appliance. Common fuels include diesel, gasoline and even a propane generator. There's pros and cons to each. Gasoline generators are often cheaper to run. However, if you are storing for a possible emergency situation, keep in mind that propane is more stable over the long term.

As with all purchases, it's always helpful to check product reviews before making the final purchase. Also, when choosing an electric generator, remember that they can be large appliances. Make sure that you have the room to store them when not in use. It might be helpful to keep an extension cord with the appliance as well, to make sure that you can run it at a convenient distance. Having a generator on hand can be not only a godsend in an emergency situation, but also convenient for recreation and work outside the home.