When Vacations Attack. When Sharks Attack. When Animals Attack.
These stories are always hot topics in the news and even make some great TV shows.
But many people look over the most frequent and dangerous attacks of them all.
When Weather Attacks!
Storms are dangerous beasts that leave millions without power each year.
If you don't want to be a victim when weather attacks, make sure your generator is prepared before the storm.
The all familiar sounds... Crash, Bang! That’s no accident. Lightning just took your power out.
Wake up your old trusty generator that you haven't used in a while. However, adding to the frustration, it's dead in the water.
The panicked feeling comes over you like when a cop flashes his lights in your rearview mirror. You don’t want to be left powerless when darkness falls.
Whether you rely on your generator for home backup power, recreational events, or work-related usage, they have to be maintained to perform at the very split second you need them.
Prepare Your Power
Regardless of the time or the place you are using your generator, you want to be able to rely on it to perform properly right then and there. The key is preparation.
If your generator has been sitting for a while, it's time to give it some attention.
Most generators are recommended to run at least once a month, for about half an hour, or so. This gives it a chance to warm up, run through new gas, circulate oil, and keep the battery charged.
Stocking up on groceries before a storm is a good idea, but think of your generator, too. It's good to have a supply of gas, oil, and filters handy, in case you need it to run for a longer time.
Also, prioritize the appliances you want to power with the generator, so you can determine if the generator can handle the load.
See how much power it takes to use that 72 inch TV. Check the power ratings of your appliances.
Keeping Your Generator Alive
Generator Maintenance keeps you and your family safe
Don't poison your generator by running it on old, stale gasoline. After 30 days, if your fuel supply hasn't been used up, replace it with fresh gas.
Try adding a fuel stabilizer to the new gas to give it a longer shelf life and to keep the fuel system cleaner. Always check for fuel leaks in the fuel lines before putting in more gas.
After a certain number of running hours, changing the oil and oil filter is recommended to keep your generator's engine properly lubricated. Check your owner's manual for suggested service intervals.
While you are on a maintenance streak, check the air filter, carburetor, and spark plug.
Clean the air filter if necessary, use some carb cleaner for the carburetor, and remove any combustion residue from the spark plug.
Generators are supposed to be ran outdoors in a clean, dry environment. If it ever gets a little dirty, use a damp cloth to wipe it down and a soft brush to clean off any oil debris.
Is Your Generator too Loud?
Is it hard to get a good night sleep when your generator is buzzing all night? Do your neighbors complain about the noise it makes, saying their dog barks at it for hours? Well, there's a simple fix.
If you want to quiet down your generator, install a Quiet Muffler. This will reduce generator engine noise and keep you and your neighbors sound asleep.
If you don't feel comfortable working on your generator, let a professional repair shop help you out.
Test, Test, Test
Your generator maintenance routine should include a test run. Test the generator with an applied load to make sure it's producing consistent power. Inspect any extension cords for cracks or damage.
Leave it to the Professionals
Use a transfer switch when connecting a generator to your home
So you want to hook up your portable generator to your home. The first step is to pick up the phone and call a licensed electrician.
This is no joke! Improper generator installation can cause electricity to backfeed into the power grid, making it a deadly situation for you and others working with the power.
A transfer switch is required to complete the in-home installation.
Let the licensed electrician install the switch for you and follow the recommended operating procedures.
Read more about portable generator safety.
Conclusion & Thoughts
Look on the bright side. With a well maintained generator, you can be one of those post-storm heroes that saves the lives of people who lost power. Maybe even getting a story in the local news. How about that?
But for now, be prepared next time with power when and where you need it.
If you're looking for a new generator, check out our selection of Honda and Generac portable generators.
Article by: Turner Anderson. If you have any comments or feedback, please let us know. E-mail us at [email protected].