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How to Shop for Home Generators

If your neighborhood experiences frequent power disruptions – or you just want to prepare your home for natural disasters – a home generator can keep the lights on for you no matter what’s going on outside.

During cold winters and hot summers, maintaining a constant source of power can make the difference between a minor inconvenience and a real crisis that could cause damage to your home and put your family in danger.

Getting the right generator can empower you to stay in your home no matter what happens to the electricity. You can save money on hotel bills, keep your pipes from bursting, and avoid spoiling all the food in your refrigerator and freezer. Additionally, if you have a baby or elderly family member in the home, you definitely want to minimize power outages so you can continue to give them adequate care.

Should I Buy a Portable Generator or a Home Backup Generator?

When you search online for information on how to shop for home generators, you’ll often guides that mix up portable generators with installed generators for home use.

In general, you’ll get more value for your money over the long run if you install a generator to use for backup power than trying to use a portable generator for multiple purposes. The reason for this is that most portable generators intended for non-commercial uses like camping and tailgate parties don’t have enough power output to keep most of your appliances running for an extended period of time. They’ll also need more frequent refueling.

Another advantage of an installed generator is that it can add to the value of your home.

If your home only experiences infrequent power outages that are mostly over within the same day, a portable generator can be a good choice, provided you are comfortable with short term inconveniences like increased noise levels, manually filling fuel and having to stagger appliance usage  However, a portable generator is much easier to move than a permanent standby generator, and may be a better fit for your needs if you are looking to use it away from home as well.

The other advantage of a standby generator is that it can be configured to turn on automatically as soon as you lose power. That’s what ‘standby’ means, after all. That’s especially useful if you sometimes experience frequent brownouts or blackouts within your home. If you completely lose power in the middle of a storm, you can wait for the storm to pass in safety without needing to manually re-fuel the generator.

Choosing the Right Size Generator for Your Home

Assurance Power is an authorized dealer for Generac, the leading brand in backup generators. We have a handy calculator that can help you to understand how to shop for home generators based on your local climate, how large your home is, and how many appliances you need to keep running.

You can power an apartment or a small house along with most of the important appliances with a generator that can put out 7,500 watts or more. For homes over 4,000 square feet or more, a generator that can output at least 20,000 watts can keep the whole house running comfortably – even if you need to use the dryer.

For more budget-conscious homeowners, you can calculate exactly how much power your most important appliances – like your well pump, refrigerator, freezer, and furnace – consumes. A professional installation service like Assurance Power can also customize your configuration so that the generator only sends power to your most important home circuits.

You should select a generator based on what you think your home needs. If you don’t mind ‘camping out’ during a blackout, a minimal standby or portable generator can fit the bill. If you want to be able to live your life as you normally do even when all the other houses in the neighborhood have gone dark, then you’ll need a more powerful standby generator.

If you are in the market for a new home generator, contact the experts at Assurance Power Systems. We’ll help you find the unit that best fits your needs and make sure it’s properly installed so you are never left in the dark during an outage!

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