What Type of Generator Should I Buy?
TechXpert verified by Ken Kontra
There are three common types of generators to consider, depending on your home’s appliances and energy needs. Whether you’re buying an inverter, portable, or whole-house generator, each one has its own design and purpose to help power your appliances.
Types of Generators
Here’s a look at three common types of generators to help you determine which suits your home best:
Inverter: This type of generator is the quietest of them all, and it can provide power to your lights, heaters, fans, as well as smaller devices like radios and phones. An inverter is perfect for recreational activities like boating and camping, but may not suffice for restoring power to the larger appliances in your home.
Portable: Portable generators provide limited power and are primarily used for building or maintenance equipment, like drills or saws, that operate for short periods of time. This type of generator is easy to move around, but doesn’t have the wattage capabilities to restore power to your home’s major appliances or systems.
Whole-house: As the name suggests, this type of generator is designed to restore power to your whole house in the case of a power outage. It can supply power to your home’s appliances and HVAC systems, while also being flexible enough to power your entire home or select circuits. Whole-house generators can operate with an existing fuel supply and be up and running within seconds of an outage.
When you’re purchasing a generator, consider the type of fuel it will need to operate. Gasoline fuel is easy to find and works well with portable generators. Keep in mind, with gasoline you’ll need to have enough on hand in case you aren’t able to get out to purchase more. If you’re buying a whole-house generator, the more cost-effective option may be natural or propane gas.
Avoiding gas fuel? You can opt for solar or battery power to operate your inverter or portable generator. These generators tend to have a lower power output than others, making them less reliable. However, they can run safely indoors without using gas as fuel.
Generating Benefits from Your Generator
If you’re looking for a generator that will power your house in an emergency, it’s best to invest in a whole-house generator. However, it really depends on what you need a generator for.
If you’re headed out to the mountains for a camping trip or replacing baseboards on your outdoor deck, it’s better to invest in a portable or inverter generator than a whole-home generator. Either way, you’ll want to select a generator that generates all the right benefits for you!
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