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Tips For Choosing a Portable Generator

When it comes time for choosing a portable generator, you may want to consider a Briggs and Stratton, a Guardian, a Makita, or many other generator brands.

Which portable generator you choose depends on what you need to use it for - in case of power outage at home, on the job, or at a campsite. It also depends on how many pieces of electrical equipment you'll need to run with your choice of portable generator.

Stand by portable generators that are mounted permanently give automatic power when your standard power supply gets interrupted. These are natural gas powered and they kick into action just a few short seconds from the time of your power failure. While less portable, choosing these generators may be wise if your area undergoes frequent outages.

Portable generators will run as little as one lamp or as much as many large appliances. When choosing a portable generator there is a scientific way of deciding what generator you need. You simply list the items that you would need to run at the same time, and total the wattage required for each of them. Some will have a run rating and a higher start up rating. Choose the higher rating as part of your wattage total. Equipment that typically has higher start up wattage needs are inductive - refrigerators, washing machines and power tolls.

As an example of how you calculate when picking a portable generator to buy, assume your one light bulb needed is 100 watts, your slow cooker uses 200 watts, your refrigerator runs on 1200 watts but needs 2900 watts for startup. You also want your TV to run at the same time and it uses 750 watts. The total wattage you'll need to look for when choosing a portable generator is 3950 watts.

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