There are different reasons why your power supply line can suddenly go off. It can be damaged by a natural disaster or a local incident. It can be cut or disabled for maintenance. No matter what the reason is, you might need an extra power source in case it happens. Will a 2000 watt inverter generator do that, or do you need something stronger? Let’s take a closer look.
Home Backup Generators
If your house is in a zone of frequent severe weather and natural cataclysms, a generator is a must. But even if there aren’t any tornados or earthquakes where you live, incidents are not ruled out. For a regular house, this is what to search for in a generator for a home.
- 120V output. It makes it compatible with absolutely most home devices.
- Dual fuel type support. This will make it more versatile, especially if you can’t make it to the nearest station and might want to use whatever you have.
- Inverter type. Inverter generators provide a stabler current and are fuel-saving (but more expensive), so they are better for home use.
- Runtime. It’s especially important if there are appliances (for example, medical ones) that need to function incessantly. 6-7 hours are good enough, though, for a standalone one.
- Noise level. A noisy generator might become the most annoying thing around even in the middle of a natural disaster.
- Eco-friendliness and efficiency. Especially if it’s been used for a long time.
- Standby mode. These generators automatically turn on if the supply is cut and back off when it’s restored. They often run on propane and can be connected to the pipe as well as use propane tanks. If your propane supply is stable, it’s the best (though expensive) option.
The most important metric, though, is the wattage. To calculate it, add up the appliances you’re going to use with it. Count only the most necessary ones: lights, the fridge, the water heater, the sockets to charge phones and laptops, etc. As for other units, like a washing machine, a clothes dryer, a TV, a smart speaker, etc., in most situations, you can delay using them by several hours at least.
So, what’s the wattage you need? A refrigerator might take up to 2,900W to start and 700W to keep running. A washing machine (due to its constant restarts in the process) will take about 1,200W. An electric oven might take up to 5,000W. Lights, phone and laptop chargers, or power banks won’t take much. So, a 10,000W generator will be a salvation on the low, but for a family to keep living a regular life, you’ll need a 20KW generator or a stronger one.
Will a Portable Generator Do?
A portable generator that provides up to 2,000W will do in some cases. There are stronger models that can provide up to 8,000W, but they are too expensive and lack the convenience of stationary models (like connection to the propane pipe). A regular 2000W generator will cover the most basic needs, but hardly more.
Let the Power Run
With the right generator, you won’t depend on the power supply so much. Sometimes, it might even be a lifesaver. Do the math and calculate what wattage you need to power all the devices you need in case of emergency, and then choose the model that is a bit stronger than that. We hope this will be helpful as you decide to buy a stationary or portable generator.