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Portable Vs. Standby Generators

Transcript of video:

Ed: Hi, I'm Ed Del Grande. I'm often asked, what's the difference between a standby generator and a portable generator? Well, there are some key differences and let me show you.

Right here, this is a standby generator and they run on natural or propane gas and those are self-heating fuels so you don't have to manually fill up a standby generator.

They are permanently mounted to your house and they are sized correctly, which means a standby generator will run your entire house. Now that includes critical things like your heating, your air conditioner, sump pumps, a;arm systems and even a well pump. And since they deliver good, clean power -- which means reliable power -- they are safe to use with your sensitive electronics.

And finally, a standby generator system is completely automatic. They use transfer switches, which will automatically turn on the generator and you don't even have to be home.

Now let me show you how a portable generator works. This is a protable generator, and believe me, the timing is pretty good to show you how they work, because I see a thunderstorm coming my way.

To set up a portable generator, you do have to take it away from the house to be safe to operate, because this is an engine that runs on gasoline. Then you also have to make sure you have plenty of gasoline on hand to make sure you keep on refilling this unit. Then you have to worry about pouring gasoline onto a hot engine, and then, when you are done with all of that, you've got to make sure when using extension cords, that you're running each extension cord into a seperate appliance. And that could take a lot of time too, handling all of the cords and laying them out can make a big mess. And make sure you operate a portable generator away from the house so that it will operate safely, you don't have to worry about fumes getting back into the house, which could be a dangerous situation.

So while portable generators are pretty good for things like camping and tailgating, they may not be the best choice to back up your home. For backing up your home, I always recommend standby generators.

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