Which Emergency Backup Generator is Right for You?


EcoFlow Delta electric generator

When shopping standby generators, your checklist should include generator size, cost, permits, and installation. But don’t worry. Your KOHLER dealer will handle all the details, so you don’t have to. (kohlerpower.com)

Generac home backup generators start at $1,949–the most cost-effective on the market. Installation costs vary by system size, installation considerations, and local building codes. We recommend getting a risk free quote from a Generac dealer near you. (generac.com)

A standby generator can energize a house for days after a blackout. Here’s how to know if a standby generator is a good investment. (popularmechanics.com)

Portable units for home use provide anywhere for 3kW to10kW of power. That’s enough to run some household essentials as long as your “essentials” don’t include the plasma TV, central air conditioner, and Jacuzzi tub. “You can probably run a water pump, a heater, some lights, and your refrigerator with a 5kW to 8kW unit,” says Chris Sauer, owner of G & G Lawn and Power in Stone Ridge, NY. (houselogic.com)

You could go bigger, but operating a high-powered portable can get difficult and carries some risks. Which brings us to the next question: (houselogic.com)

There are a lot of choices out there for backup power. Find out how a Generac home backup generator can help you during a power outage. (generac.com)

Which emergency backup generator is right for you?

A range of permanent and portable generators are available, so here’s how to choose.

A power outage in your home can be frightening, especially if severe weather is right outside your door. But there’s another option to being left in the dark: an emergency generator. When the grid is down because of storms hurricanes , freezing temperatures or other natural disasters, you never know how long it will take to restore power to homes. Having a backup generator in place will provide your home with temporary power during an emergency.

Source: (statefarm.com)

Is your facility prepared for a power outage?

Power outages can occur at any time. Ensure that your employees, tenants and customers know what to do during an emergency and that you have plans for backup power.

Source: (pge.com)

Should You Buy a Standby Generator?

A standby generator can energize a house for days after a blackout. Here’s how to know if a standby generator is a good investment.

Source: (popularmechanics.com)

Are you dependent on electricity for a medical device?

If you rely on electric or battery-dependent medical technologies such as assistive technology, breathing machines, a power wheelchair or scooter, and home oxygen or dialysis, it is critical that you have a plan in place for an extended power outage.


Source: (pge.com)

Inverter Generators

• Because their engines are more complex, these models generally cost more than portable generators of a comparable output.

• Inverter generators are much quieter than their conventional counterparts because they throttle up and down to match demand rather than run at full power all the time. They also have more sophisticated exhaust systems which also help tamp down noise.

• They run more efficiently and produce fewer emissions, but you should still follow all the same safety precautions you would with a portable generator.

Source: (consumerreports.org)

Sizing Standby Generators

Generators come in lots of different sizes, and can be powered by either natural gas or liquid propane (LP). A common mistake is to get the largest unit available to power the entire house. And that’s certainly one option.

But a more sensible and affordable approach is to buy a generator sized to power your home’s most essential electrical circuits, such as those connected to the furnace, kitchen appliances, well pump, water heater, security system, garage-door opener, and a few lights and outlets. These installations are often referred to as “partial-house generators.” House size is just one criterion for selecting a standby generator. The complexity of the home’s electrical system also plays a key role, especially if it has central air conditioning. So, sizing generators isn’t as simple as saying, “If your home has this many sq. ft., then you must get this size generator.” It’s slightly more complex than that, and an experienced electrician will calculate your home’s anticipated electrical loads and recommend the right size generator.

Source: (popularmechanics.com)


Whether you’re supplying power to the family RV, providing your phone with some much-needed juice, or contacting first responders in the midst of a backcountry emergency, a generator is a useful piece of outdoor equipment. Here’s how to use one.

For many of us, camping is a pastime that can only be enjoyed by disconnecting from our busy, scheduled, tumultuous world. To disconnect means turning down the music, shutting off the phone, and cutting the cord on everyday electronics. Though disengaging from the world is often a peaceful enterprise, there are times when a portable camping generator is necessary.

From powering outdoor lighting at the campground to staying connected with loved ones far away, a camping generator can serve you in a variety of ways. If you’re considering the nomadic life that requires a home on wheels, a generator will quickly become a fundamental piece of everyday equipment.

Regardless of how your generator will serve you, the first thing you’ll need to know is how exactly to use one. In this how-to for generators, we’ll guide you through the main factors to focus on after purchasing this powerful appliance.

Generator Types: Gasoline vs. Battery Pack

Before we jump into using your generator, let’s consider the various types of “generators” you may own. Historically, a generator has been a gas or diesel motor that powers an electrical generator. These portable generators will run as long as they have fuel and can produce enough power to run home appliances (or even industrial sites if they are big enough).

Review: The Fast-Charging Power Station That Blew Up Kickstarter

The EcoFlow Delta 1300 battery powers your work and play tools emissions-free. And it claims to recharge faster than any other battery-based generator. No wonder it’s nearing $2 million on Kickstarter. Read more…

But in recent years, some brands have begun to refer to large lithium-ion battery banks as “generators” as well. These power banks are much larger than the small phone chargers that you would drop in your backpack. Most weigh in the 15- to 30-pound range.

They contain powerful batteries that can run technology like computers, power tools, or small refrigerators off the grid. As a major plus, they’re silent. On the downside, they require a power source — a wall outlet, a solar panel, or a 12-volt outlet in a vehicle — to recharge.

how to use a generator
A Goal Zero Yeti 150 battery pack is a quiet alternative to a gas generator

Below, we discuss how you can use a gas generator safely and effectively. For those using electric generators, here’s an example of the user guide for Goal Zero’s Yeti 150 Portable Power Station.

Gas Generator Preparation

Consult the Owner’s Manual

Before firing up your generator, begin by consulting the owner’s manual. Though it may seem like a tedious effort, every generator has its own quirks and operating procedures that will require proper assembly.

Move Your Generator Outside

It may seem like common knowledge, but a generator will produce fumes as it burns through fuel. For this reason, it’s recommended that you run your generator outside, at least 15 feet away from any structure or vehicle.

Never operate your generator in a confined space such as a tent, camper, or garage where deadly carbon monoxide gas may collect.

Remove Any Connected Cords

Before starting up your generator, disconnect any cords that may run to your home, camper, or other electronics that need juice. Avoid producing any load during the startup that’s attached to your home.

After the generator has been started successfully, feel free to plug in the corresponding cords as needed.

Turning on Your Generator

Turning on your generator will be a hassle-free process once you’ve done so a few times, but the steps involved can be tricky to remember. Follow these effortless steps to successfully turn on your generator each and every time.

Turn on the Fuel Valve

Think of the fuel valve as the primary component of the generator that allows it to start. Once you’ve located the fuel valve, turn it to the “on” position. This will release fuel into the carburetor that will help the engine start successfully.

Turn on the Choke

When working with internal combustion engines, a choke valve comes into play that modifies the air pressure in the intake manifold. This will alter the ratio of fuel and air quantity entering the engine.

After locating the choke rod, move it from left to right or bottom to top, depending on its original orientation. This will make it much easier for the engine to start running, especially if you’re starting the engine cold after a bout of time without use.

Turn on the Ignition

To actually fire up your generator, you’ll often need to locate the ignition or engine switch somewhere on the side of the device. This will essentially be a small switch that flips on before the device is started.

If your generator happens to have an electric start button or a turnkey ignition, you can turn on the generator far easier than you would by using the recoil-cord option outlined below. If the engine doesn’t start after pressing and holding the electric start button, your battery may be out of juice. Should this occur, charge the battery on a trickle charge as you would a car battery.

Pull the Recoil Cord

Pulling the recoil cord will actually start the engine. Pull the cord until you feel resistance on the other end, then release. This may take 2-3 attempts, as fuel is injected into the engine with each pull.

If the engine doesn’t start after multiple pulls, stop and let the equipment sit for a few minutes to ensure the engine isn’t flooded with fuel.

If the engine doesn’t start, move the choke into the halfway position and pull the cord again.

Move the Choke Into the ‘Run’ Position

Once the engine has been successfully started, slowly move the choke back into the “run” position that you found it in before preparing the generator for use. Do this after the generator has been running for a few minutes.

turning on generator
Photo credit: tablexxnx

Harnessing Power From Your Generator

Once your generator is turned on, let it run for a few minutes to warm up, then follow the steps below.

Gather the Cords

Your generator will transfer energy by way of a power cord, but the cord you need depends on the device you’re looking to power. For instance, campfire lights that are strung up to set the mood will require only a light-duty, 16-gauge extension cord.

When powering major appliances, you’ll want a heavy-duty, 12-gauge extension cord or 10-gauge extension cord. For instance, a 10-gauge extension cord would be ideal for an RV refrigerator.


When the time comes to refuel your generator, simply unplug the power cords from any external devices or buildings and allow the generator to run for a few minutes to stabilize it. Turn it off and let it cool before adding more fuel, then repeat the process described above to turn the generator back on.

refueling generator
Photo credit: Zeitfixierer

Generators are an essential piece of equipment whether you’re camping in the backcountry or returning power to your home after a storm. To get the most out of your generator, follow the owner’s manual and treat your generator with care for extended use.

...Now we’ll take a lot of energy to keep a facility. This size, humming and backup power is what Mark needs to keep his company up and running.

That’S why I turned to Kohler Generators and Ed Del Grande to provide the right size generator for backup power if the need should arise So Ed. What do you think are some preliminary guidelines when choosing the correct generator for your space? Well, the biggest guideline we take a look in here Kalyn is make sure it’s sized correctly.

Now these are not do-it-yourself projects. Obviously, So you wanna go to a place like Kohlergenerators.com They’ll set you up with a dealer, who’ll, let you know the size you need. So Ed walk me through the process of installation for our commercial generator. Usually it starts with the landscaping, the trenching, because they do run on natural gas or propane gas lines, So you usually have to bury those underground, and then you can start work on the concrete pad.

That has to be big enough and strong enough to hold a big commercial generator and with the residential generators. Usually we can get manpower to move them in place, But, as you know, with big commercial stuff, we needed a crane to put this one on the pad.

So now talk to me about how we actually turn the building on in case of a storm or a hurricane here in South Florida. Well, Kalyn, that’s another great thing about the Kohler Standby Generators. It’S all automatic Inside the building, you’ll have an automatic transfer switch. It’S always on standby and that’s how you get the name: standby generator.

And when it senses, there’s no power at the street, it’ll automatically switch the circuits over start, the generator and within 8 to 10 seconds you’ll have that building up and running And with a generator this size, you won’t notice the difference. So let’s say: there’s a hurricane and power’s knocked out here in South Florida for 2 weeks. How long is this generator gon na last Another great thing about being natural gas or propane fuel? That’S running these generators. It usually can handle any length of power. That’S out!


So everybody will be in this corporate office getting coffee when there’s no coffee anywhere else in the city, ( Laughter )! Well, you know what I know you’re kinda joking about that. But this is a true serious point: Yeh, Once you have standby power, whether it’s for residential use or commercial use, you’re now a safe haven, and you can help people in your neighborhood. That’s right! So that’s no joke So, with the Kohler automatic generator in place and 4 Evergreen, adding the finishing touch by planting bushes and laying sod around this backup power site. We truly have green energy, laying in wait amidst this green landscape, (, Music, )

Strong reliable portable power is a must for your upcoming vacation travel and outdoor activities. The aim top 300-watt portable power station is the solution for your remote power needs for virtually all of your devices and appliances. It’s easy to use and recharge and requires no maintenance and no gasoline. It’S perfect to carry in your car for safety and security. This 300-watt portable power station packs a massive 75,000 milliamp-hour 280 watts power lithium battery that will recharge drones, digital cameras, computers and tablets, and personal medical devices with ease, and it features a 110 volt, 300 watts, AC port for USB ports to a which are For quick charge situations, three 12-volt outputs, one 24 volt output, and one 12-volt car port simultaneously charge up to 10 devices without fear of overcurrent over-voltage, / temperature or short-circuits.

Our pure sine-wave AC power output is safer for sensitive electronic devices. That will last longer run cooler operate more efficiently and it’s less likely to have errors or shutdowns. You can recharge your aim. Tom power station using a wall outlet DC power from a 12-volt car socket or charge it using the versatile aim. Tom 60 watt solar panel that is sold separately, lightweight and compact in size. It’S only seven and a half inches long and weighs just 7.3 pounds being off the grid has never been so easy you. This is what comes with your Yeti. 400. Of course, the beautiful getting 400 the wall charger the Munir to church in your wall – and this is the legacy adapter for older gold Arizona like the little brother Yeti 150. The Yeti 400 has a lot going on. First and foremost, your input is how your recharging, plugin or the wall charges that come included to recharge you’re getting 400. Here’S your 12-volt section turns on an optimist, switch right there, there’s our traditional 12 volt and for things like coal, zero lights. This is the USB area comes with two USBs, with its nice charger cell phone charger tablet. At the same time, the next section over your face, 1:10 and Berger as you can see when that’s on it’s using a little bit of power, so be careful but go ahead and plug in whatever you want laptops things like that. It’S got a pure sine-wave. It’S just 8,400 has an upgraded display. Not only does it tell you how much battery you have left, it also tells you how much power you’re getting and how is power last thing is the display button this trick the light up in display on and off. So you can see that night