Electric generators convert a form of energy into electrical energy. They are used in homes as well as commercial and industrial locations for a number of different reasons.
Electric Generator Functions
Electric generators supply power to a house when there is a power outage. Not only that, but during power outages, they prove critical to businesses, ensuring continuity of a production line in a factory, and keeping freezer food frozen in grocery stores and distribution centers. Electric generators provide necessary power to outdoor and remote projects such as building a cabin. And they help run the corner hot dog and pretzel stands.
Electric Generator Features
When choosing the right generator, consider all its key features:
- Wattage capacity
- Noise level
- Type of fuel supply
- Weather protection
- Available outlets.
The most critical feature of a generator is its wattage capacity. You need to ensure it offers sufficient power. After guaranteeing the generator can supply adequate wattage capacity, consider the rest of its features.
Generators can be quite noisy, so if you need a quiet one, be sure to select one low in decibels. Generators can be powered by:
- Natural gas.
Choosing a gas-powered portable generator is a smart choice because gas is easily accessible. If the generator will be moved around a lot, consider purchasing one with wheels or one small enough to carry by hand.
Depending upon where you live and where the generator will be stored, you might find it worthwhile buying one with control panel protection from rain, dust, and the like. Finally, be sure the generator houses enough outlets for your needs. And for safety, be sure they are circuit breaker protected.
Types of Electric Generators
There are portable and permanent generators. The right-sized generator is determined by its function along with wattage capacity.
- Recreational generators - ideal for camping and tailgating; smaller recreational models selected to power houses will yield enough watts for one or two appliances
- Emergency power generators - turn on when there is a loss of power
- Portable mid-sized generators - power 3,000 to 6,000 watts, or basically, all the necessary appliances
- Large generators - power 7,000 to 9,000 watts
- Extra-large generators - power 10,000 or more watts and are often accompanied with an electrical starter
- Standby generators - automatically kick in when there is a blackout, turning off when electricity is restored. It runs much like an air conditioner, but it is connected to a natural gas line instead of to the electricity. They also use an automatic transfer switch instead of a thermostat. Standby generators are termed in kilowatts (1,000 watts).
The typical house needs approximately 7 kilowatts. This will allow for all appliances to work except for central air, which consumes a large amount of energy. There are home- and commercial-grade standby generators. By visiting a local hardware store or an online site, experts can help you find the right generator to meet your needs.