Which Portable Generator Is Right For Me?

There are a lot of generator choices out there with some more “permanent” than others.  Today we’re tackling the portable category – from your on-the-go recreational needs to helping you get through a power outage. Below are three different kinds of portable generators best suited for different situations. Pick which use is best for you before making a purchase.

How will you use your portable generator?

Outdoor enjoyment: Tailgating & Camping Generators

Camping and tailgating can be more comfortable and enjoyable with access to power. From radios to cellphones to blenders and electric grills, a portable generator can power all your favorite electric devices. The P2000 PowerSmart Series Inverter is quiet enough that it won’t bother your neighbors and weighs just 50 pounds so two people can easily move it. Powerful and compact, pack it up for the big game or your family’s next camping trip.

Disaster Preparedness: Home backup for emergencies

On average, families in the U.S. lost power five times in 2013 and the same could be true for 2014. Power outages can make for a costly cleanup when the lights come back on: Food may spoil, basements can flood when pumps stop functioning and families may be forced to stay in a hotel until power is returned. A typical U.S. home can be run on 4,000 to 6,000 watts. For storms, the 6250 Watt Storm Responder Portable Generator will provide great fuel efficiency and power to our home and appliances. A portable home generator can provide great peace of mind during the worst storms.

Generators on the Job: Farming and heavy duty projects

Buying a Portable Generator

Tough jobs require reliable power. The 8000 Watt Portable Generator is ideal for farm or jobsite use and has durable components that can withstand the harshest treatment. Plus, this portable generator can run for up to 9 hours. A PRO Series Portable Generator  is also recommended for jobsites becsue they have GFCI protected outlets per OSHA. Be sure to place generators on level ground when in use and never operate them on a trailer or the bed of a truck.

As with any important tool, the best time to buy a portable generator is before you need it. Whether for play, emergency or work, a generator is always a great investment for your home and family. If you’re in the market for a portable generator, check out our buying guide for more information and visit a local generator dealer near you.

Watch for our standby generators blog coming soon! In the meantime, follow are some commonly asked questions:

FAQs for Buying a Portable Generator

What size portable generator do I need?

There are a couple of factors you need to take into consideration when choosing a portable generator, including the size of your home and the number of electrical devices you want to power. If you purchase a generator that is too small, you won’t be able to power all of your electronics. It is best to have a professional assess which size generator is right for your home.

How much noise is too much noise?

Different models produce different amounts of noise – keep this in mind when choosing your portable generator. Generator noise levels typically range between 55 dBA to 85 dBA. Fairly quiet generators are usually rated below 75 dBA.  Generators above 75 dBA are louder than usual. Also keep location in mind – if the generator will be near the room of your sleeping baby, spending a little more on a quieter model may be worth it. If you’re using it to tailgate, noise may not be a big deal.

Do you need a permit to have a generator for your home?

Check with your municipality or county to make sure any necessary permits are taken care of before you buy. Installing a standby generator will usually require a permit and an electrical inspection post-installation.

How much maintenance will your generator require?

Like all power equipment, your portable generator will likely need a tune-up or two eventually. Learn how to check the oil, replace parts and troubleshoot basic problems to prolong the life of your generator.

Generator Safety

Always read and follow the manufacturer’s operating manual and instructions before running a generator and pay close attention to safety considerations. Visit our website for other useful safety and usage tips and video.

Don’t run a generator indoors. Portable generators release potentially harmful carbon monoxide emissions. They should not be operated indoors, in garages, basements, attics, crawl spaces or sheds, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.