How to Find and Buy the Best Generators for Home Use - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

How to Find and Buy the Best Generators for Home Use

If you are looking to buy a generator for your home, click here to learn how to find the right generator for you and to see the best generators for sale.

Does your home or neighborhood lose power often? Losing electricity in the middle of chores, work, or other tasks can be frustrating. If you often lose power at home, it may be time to look for some good generators for home use.

There is no question that this has a big effect on one’s productivity at home, at work, or in school. Back in 2016, people experienced an average of four hours without power due to electrical outages. The results of that affected even the GDP from the loss of productive work hours.

With that said, you can say that electricity or lack thereof has a significant effect on one’s efficiency. It’s important to have generators at the ready even at home, especially for those who have home-based jobs. Read on below for an informative generator buying guide for you.

1. Know How Much Power You Need

Before you start looking for generators for home use, you first need to know the amount of power your home takes up. The generator that will fit your home will depend on the appliances and lights you have at home. Once you know how much power your home takes up, only then can you start shopping for a generator.

Make a list of the appliances at home that should be running even without power. It’s also important to know how much power they use. Below, we have a list of the necessary appliances plus their estimated wattages:

  • Refrigerator – 600-700 watts
  • Lights – 60-600 watts
  • Sump pump – 750-1,500 watts
  • Portable heater – 1,500 watts
  • Window air conditioner – 1,000 watts
  • Computers – 60-300 watts; laptop – 200 watts
  • Home security system – 100 watts

Remember that these are only rough estimates and assumptions. If you want to make sure about their wattages, you can check the labels on your appliances or search online. When you have their wattages, take the sum.

The number you get will be a ballpark of how much power you need in your generator.

A midsized inverter can provide around 3,500 watts. Large inverters and portable generators can give you 7,500 watts. Home standby generators will be able to give you up to 20,000 watts.

2. How Often Do You Run Out of Power?

Depending on how often power outages occur in your home, the best size of your home generator will vary. If power outages are frequent, consider a large inverter, standby, or portable generator. These types of generators are best fitted to homes prone to severe weather events.

If you experience only occasional outages, you don’t have to spend as much on a home generator. In this case, you can choose to buy a portable generator or a large inverter. These should have enough power to accommodate your house.

What if power outages are rare in your area but you want to secure a generator anyway? Our recommendation would be a midsized inverter or a recreational inverter. These smaller generators should be enough when you experience the rare power outage.

3. Which Generators for Home Use?

In the previous section, we touched on the different types only for a brief moment. Allow us to elaborate further so you can choose the best generator for your home.  There are several types to choose from in the market.

Home standby generators are permanent installments that run on natural gas or propane. On automatic, they will kick in when an outage occurs. They are also the most expensive, ranging from $3,000 to $6,000 at 5,000 to 20,000 watts.

A portable generator costs much less than home standby generators, at $400 to $1,000 for 3,000 to 8,5000 watts. They’ll often run on gasoline and should be 20 ft. away from any structure. This kind of generator poses risks with carbon monoxide poisoning.

Portable power stations are unlike traditional generators that use gas or propane. Instead, they use battery or solar power. They are very quiet and they don’t produce emissions at all.

Portable power generators don’t need anything to start. They act more like large battery packs that cost $750 to $3,000. They’re new to the market and are not able to power as many appliances or run too long.

The last type is the inverter generator with a price starting from $500 to $4,000. These generators have more complex but quieter engines. They are also more efficient and produce fewer emissions.

4. What Other Features Do You Need?

Other than the size and wattage of a generator, you want to check other features of it. For example, what fuel type should it have? It’s important to know the pros and cons of Generator Diesel, petrol, and other fuels for generators.

Does the generator noise bother you or family members too much? You may have a baby or a grandparent at home who’d feel bothered by the noise. Neighbors may raise complaints against generators that are too loud.

Some generators turn on at the press of a button while others need a pull-start to jumpstart the engine. Are others in the family knowledgeable in starting a generator with a pull-start? If not, consider an automatic start feature.

If you experience long blackouts, look for generators with the capacity to hold more fuel. Some generators can run on alternative fuels in case you run out of gasoline. It’s also easier to check generators with a fuel gauge.

Also, it’s wise to consider your budget despite all these. You may be aiming to get the best home generator in the market but have no money to buy it with. Then again, don’t be too cheap when buying one.

Prepare for Power Outages

That’s it for our guide on choosing the best generators for home use. Remember that generators are great investments for the home. Be wise about deciding which one to buy and always make sure it will fit your needs.

Did you find this content informative? Are you looking for others like it? For more useful and helpful guides like this, feel free to go over our other posts.

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I'm a single mother of 2 living in Utah writing about startups, business, marketing, entrepreneurship, and health. I also write for Inc, Score, Manta, and Newsblaze Contact the author.

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