How to Choose a Generator
What size generator will I need?
Add up the power requirements of the appliances and devices you will want to use. (Check the back and sides for a label with this info.)
Add up the wattage of all the light bulbs you will want to use.
Find the total amps you need by dividing watts by volts.
Choose a generator that produces more amps than you need – because some machines draw up to 3 times as much power when starting up, and others lose efficiency over time. The best option is a permanently-installed stationary generator.
Most household devices run on 120 volts.
Most major appliances with a plug that looks like this, require 240 volts.
Using a Generator at Home
• The primary hazards to avoid when using a generator are carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust, electric shock or electrocution, and fire. Follow the directions supplied with the generator. (Learn more about carbon monoxide poisoning.)
Local laws may restrict the amount of fuel you may store, or the storage location. Ask your local fire department.
Store the fuel outside of living areas in a locked shed or other protected area. To guard against accidental fire, do not store it near a fuel-burning appliance, such as a natural gas water heater in a garage.
Check that the entire cord is free of cuts or tears and that the plug has all three prongs, especially a grounding pin.
Prevent Carbon Monoxide (CO) Poisoning
Test the batteries frequently and replace when needed.
Call for help from the fresh air location and remain there until emergency personnel arrive to assist you.
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