Planning to Buy a Portable Generator? Here are the Qualities to Look For
Unlike standby generators, portable generators are easy to move as they aren’t permanently installed.
14:03 07 February 2021
In addition, while standby generators run automatically, portable generators have to be manually started. There are power outlets on every unit that allow you to plug electric-powered tools, extension cords, and digital appliances into it. The more powerful the generator is the more power outlets that come with it. If you are planning to buy one, there are some qualities you need to look for before deciding on the right one for you. Read on to learn more about the qualities you should look for in a portable generator.
Carbon Monoxide Detection
Note that portable generators should never be used inside your house or in a garage, even if the windows and doors are open. The generators produce carbon monoxide, which is an odorless, colorless poisonous gas that kills without warning! A carbon monoxide detector is very important because it measures the level of carbon monoxide that is near the engine, and if it is too high, it shuts down the engine automatically. However, you have to make sure that the generator exhaust is pointed downwind from the sensor and do not place it in a corner to avoid false readings.
EFI stands for Electronic Fuel Injection. It injects fuel directly into an engine’s manifold or cylinder using electronic controls. This feature is great because it ends the need for a carburetor, which is a device that combines fuel and air for internal combustion engines in the proper fuel-air ratio. A clogged carburetor is such a headache, and Electronic Fuel Injection will help you get rid of it. Also, generators with Electronic Fuel Injection are easier to get started up in cold weather.
Portable generators can be quiet as long as you are not aiming for a 4000 Watt class or higher, as you won’t really find a quiet generator in this category. However, you can easily find affordable quiet generators lower than 4000 Watt. You should also consider the fuel source, as the noise levels of diesel-fueled generators are typically higher than those of gas-fueled generators. A quiet generator will be deeply appreciated by all members of your household as well as your neighbors.
Size and Weight
As a general rule, the higher the watts, the bigger and heavier the generator. However, there are some exceptions. Portable generators come in different sizes and weights, so when you are choosing one, you need to determine your needs first to make sure you choose the right one for you. Bear in mind that the wheels on big generators do not imply that you can move them on your own, as some can weigh up to 250 pounds!
Look for portable generators with a decent run time. In fuel-powered portable generators running on gasoline or propane, the data is usually expressed at a half load, which means 50% capacity, or quarter load, which means 25% capacity with a full tank. For example, if a 300 Watt portable generator has 10 hours run at half load, it can run for 10 hours when its load is kept at 1500 Watts. Solar-powered generators are a different story, as their runtime is expressed in watts per hour or WH. Find out how many hours of sun charging is needed to get fully charged. Solar-powered generators are environmentally friendly, but they are usually more expensive.
Wheel Kits and Lift Hook Bars
As mentioned above, generators are heavy machines, so a wheel kit is needed. Bear in mind that not all portable generators come with a wheel kit, but they can be bought separately. Do not worry about the process of installing a wheel kit, as it is straightforward. As for the hook bars, they are very beneficial if you are planning to use your portable generator for commercial or industrial work as you might need to lift the generator to higher floors.
Portable generators are an invaluable asset in case of natural disasters and emergencies like, hurricanes, tornadoes, or any occurrence that can cause power outages. It doesn’t matter if it is for personal or commercial use, a portable generator can save the day in any kind of emergency. Power outages are unavoidable no matter what you do, and portable generators can keep essential appliances and other devices running by providing the needed power until electricity is back on. Not only are they beneficial in case of emergencies, but they can also be used in outdoor activities and events. However, before investing in one, you need to look into the features mentioned above to make sure that you choose the right generator that fits your needs.