If you’re like a lot of folks, you don’t really become familiar with your portable generator until there’s a storm. But it’s absolutely critical that you understand these basics about using a portable generator. Here are the most common questions people ask me:
Can I run the generator inside? NO! ABSOLUTELY NOT! Your generator needs to be in a well-ventilated area outside of the home and garage. Generators create carbon monoxide, a poisonous gas that is odorless and WILL KILL YOU! It is important that you place the generator away from the house. And not under the eaves where the gas will fill your attic and get into your home.
Can I use the generator in the rain? NO! It needs to be out of the water. It is electricity we’re dealing with.
After the electricity comes back on, what do I do? The unit needs to be winterized. All fuel must be removed and the carburetor bowl should be drained.
How much will it power? Common household items can be run on a 2,000 watt generator or larger. This includes a refrigerator, freezer, fan, microwave, TV and the like. You may not be able to run all items at once. If you overload the generator you need to unplug something and try again. Most refrigerators will remain cold for 4 or 5 hours. With this in mind, run your generator several times a day to cool off the fridge, then shut it down or use your generator to power other appliances. To run larger items, such as a well pump or A/C, we would need information from the item, primarily the starting AMPs. Then it can be plugged into a formula to determine the size of generator you need.
Mike Kurbanick is the owner of Mikes Lawnmowers in Ocala. Mikes Lawnmower has served Marion County for more than 30 years with knowledgeable employees, a large selection of parts in stock, and a great selection of mowers, lawn and power equipment for personal and commercial applications. For information, call (352) 694-2824 or visit them online at MikesLawnmower.com.