Are you in the market for a portable generator? You should be careful with your purchase so you don’t wind up buying a thousand-dollar dud. Here are just a few things to keep in mind when looking for generators.
1. Know Your Price Range
First things first: How much can you afford to spend on a generator? Small and short-lived ones won’t cost you anything at all, but if you’re looking for a high-powered or long-term choice, be prepared to spend a few hundred dollars at the very least.
2. Examine the Engine
The engine is the heart of the generator, so if you find a model you like, make sure you inspect its innards. Look at both its power output and any special components designed for your convenience. For example, a Snap-on generator comes with an OHV engine that includes recoil start.
3. Consider Runtime
Are you worried about neighborhood blackouts? Most generators don’t need to be run at full capacity to supply you with emergency power, so make your decision based on the hours offered by 50 or 75 percent power. The good brands should provide at least 10 hours or more.
4. Ask About Its Noise Level
If you’re looking for a quiet generator, you’ll want to examine its decibel output. Some of the high-powered ones can get quite loud, and you don’t want to discover this the first time you turn it on! If the salespeople can’t tell you how much noise to expect, call the manufacturer and inquire directly.
5. Think About Maneuverability
How will you lug your generator around? Many come with wheels and handles so they’ll live up to their “portable” name, but some transportation features are better than others. For example, wheels are useless if they’re too small to really distribute the generator’s weight. Look for oversized wheels connected to easy-grip handles.
6. Demand A Respectable Warranty
Never buy a generator without some kind of insurance policy to back up your purchase. Most companies offer a one- or two-year guarantees as a matter of course, but sometimes they’ll try to trick you by only offering protection in the event of certain accidents or defects. Make sure your policy covers everything that you require.
These are just seven tips for finding the right portable generator for you. The high-end brands can be a costly investment, so make sure you’re choosing correctly the first time!