Portable generators find broad application in various areas of our life.
They can generate emergency power, run a job site, and, of course, be irreplaceable companions for avid campers. With a plethora of different products available in the market, finding the best choice for you could be a pretty challenging task.
Indeed, if you want to buy a generator able to cater directly to all your needs, there are numerous things you should consider. Lucky for you, below is an in-depth guide on how to figure out your perfect fit. Let’s take a closer look at the qualities you should look for in a portable generator.
Power Is Key
No doubt, the power of your future generator is the first thing to be considered. Buy the one that is too weak for your needs, and you will embark on the infinite journey of choices: whether to watch TV or warm up your dinner in the microwave, use a hairdryer or work on a laptop, well, you got the idea. This is not to say, you should go for the highest wattage – the more, the better rule doesn’t really work in this case. If you buy a generator that is too powerful for your needs, you will just waste money and have less free space for other stuff.
Therefore, set aside enough time to determine your needs. A lot depends on the purpose of your future generator. According to experts from https://generatorgrid.com, if you plan to use it for different purposes, for instance, for camping and in your household, look for models that can operate a wide variety of appliances. The best way to calculate your power needs is to compile a list of all the electrical devices that you may want to run on a generator.
You can find the exact data on wattage in the manufacturer’s specifications you’ve got with your appliance or simply browse the internet to fish out the desired info. Here are just a few examples to give you an idea of the average wattage of the most common of them. For instance, a fridge will take between 100W and 600W depending on the model while an electrical stove will need 1200W. Laptops are truly modest in their demands, seeking between 50W and 100W, but the same can’t be said about water heaters that can swallow up to 5000 watts.
Since portable generators usually come in three ranges: 2000 – 3000 watts, 3000 – 5000 watts, and 5000-10000 watts, it is clear that if you plan to camp and use A/C in addition to smaller appliances, you can’t make it without at least 3000 watts. On the other side, the most powerful generators from the third category are able to support several vehicles or a truly large RV.
Another important element in the whole story of buying a portable generator is to find one with a decent run time. In the case of fuel-powered devices that run on gasoline or propane, this data is usually expressed at a half load (50% capacity) or a quarter load (25% capacity) with a full tank. For instance, if a 3000-watt generator has 10 hours run at a half load, it means it can run for 10 hours when its load is kept at 1500 watts.
If you opt for a solar-powered generator, then its run time will be expressed in watts per hour or WH. Look for info on how many hours of sun charging it will need to be fully charged. Even though this type of generator is convenient and energy-efficient, it usually comes with a higher price.
Size and Weight
This one is pretty simple because generally, the higher the wattage, the bigger and heavier the generator. Well, there are some exceptions, so you will be able to find a lightweight model in the 3000 – 5000 watts category. Anyway, the larger versions usually are equipped with wheels and a handle for easier transportation. Just a heads up, even though the biggest machines do have wheels, do not think you will be able to move them alone. They are really heavy, some weigh more than 250 pounds, hence consider this detail if you want a generator which is uncomplicated to pull around.
Whatever your needs, there is a portable generator to suit them. It doesn’t matter, whether you need one for your home, a job site, or for your brand new RV to enjoy the full benefits of camping, you will have no problem finding your perfect fit, all the more so, now you know what to look for.