Have you ever had to decide whether to call a professional to fix your portable generator or whether it will do the job itself? If you have, then you are not alone. Many homeowners and business owners make this mistake. This decision can have disastrous consequences if the generator is not maintained properly. It will need maintenance now and in the future to keep it running at top condition.
The generator will need to be taken care of because of its size and the possibility of a power outage. One of the first things you should check before calling a professional is to make sure the generator does not contain a high amount of carbon monoxide. Check the circuit breaker for leaks and find out if the power cord is properly connected and insulated. If you need a service or repair man, you should ask them to come to the location rather than having them come to your home. It is better to have them come to your location than have them come to your home and then have to drive them to your generator to perform the necessary repairs.
Generators are designed to work as back-up power sources for your home, but they can also be used to provide power for any number of appliances that you own. Portable generators are capable of powering many different appliances including hair dryers, computers, stoves, refrigerators, washers, microwaves, lights, security lighting and more. A portable generator can run these appliances with only a little amount of energy used which saves you money on your utility bills. Because many Americans live without electricity, they have learned to rely on portable generators to help keep them comfortable during power outages.
When determining the size of your portable generator, you must consider the appliances you want to be powered. Determine the maximum wattage you will need for the appliances you own and then multiply that number by the number of hours in a month you plan to use the items. If you use five hours in a month, you would need a unit with a rating of twenty-five watts or higher. If you use less than five hours in a month you would need a smaller unit with a rating of ten watts or lower.
The wattage and the maximum power required for your generator will depend on the age of the appliance you are powering. Some of the common power sources used for household appliances are a refrigerator, air conditioner, washer and dryer, computer and television, and a hair dryer. The age of these appliances varies and you should purchase a generator designed to power them at their peak ability. While a small refrigerator will require a low wattage generator, a large air conditioning unit or a television will need a much larger wattage.
The size of your portable generator will also depend on how much electrical power it requires to run it. Most portable generators consume approximately one hundred twenty volts of electricity per hour. However, you can buy a unit with an output of one thousand volts of electrical power so you would not have to worry about plugs and wires in order to use it.
There are several other features that may interest you when purchasing a portable generator. A common feature is a manual transfer switch. In a diesel engine, a manual transfer switch will allow you to start the engine without turning off the power line. A gas powered engine has a clutch system that will hold the engine while waiting for the electrical power to be turned on. This feature can save you a great deal of time.
You may also be interested in an inverter generator. An inverter generator will allow you to convert direct current (DC) energy into alternating current (AC). DC is the common mode that you are used to see in homes. AC is the current used in most businesses and large office buildings. A portable generator with an inverter generator will allow you to power your lights, computer, and other appliances by converting the DC energy into AC energy you need to run those things.