“What type of generator do I need?”


At Sutherlands HomeBase, we hear this question fairly frequently. Many times a customer will buy a generator in preparation for a storm (or more frequently after one has already knocked out the power) and or they will have a very specific use in mind, like camping or construction.

Top 5 Things to Know When Buying A Generator

  1. Generator’s purpose – If you are buying a generator in preparation for a storm, be sure to understand the essential equipment you will want to run. A good choice in a generator will produce enough power to run your heat or air conditioner and other essentials (like a refrigerator to keep your food intact. Some generators may produce enough power to also keep your sump pump, fire and burglar alarms going too. In winter having heat during a power outage can not only keep your family reasonably warm and safe during a storm, but it can also help prevent frozen pipes too. If you plan on using your generator on a job site or another type of industrial application, it is often best to look at the specific wattage required.
    Wattage Should Power
    1000-2500 Watts campers, tailgaters and boater needs
    3000-5000 Watts smaller furnace if you get water from the city or most equipment
    5000-7000 Watts larger furnace or a small furnace with well pump
    6500-9000 Watts equipment with 3 horsepower or greater
  2. Noise level considerations – Many areas have noise ordinances, especially if you plan on running your generator at night. If a generator is too noisy, it may be unsuitable for camping, RVing and powering outdoor events. Noise level is measured in decibels. Note – for every 10 decibel increase, the noise level is 10 times more powerful. This means that a generator that runs at 70 decibels is 10 times louder than a generator that runs at 60 decibels. Be sure to buy a quieter generator if you have noise restrictions or just don’t want a loud generator in your life.
  3. Ease of use – If you can’t get your generator started or isn’t easy to use, especially when you need it the most, then what’s the point of owning a generator. Look for electric start, efficient gas burn rate (less fuel used) and a large gas tank (how long can the generator go before next refill. You should always look for the maximum run time that you can afford.
  4. Size and ease of transport – Consider the most compact generator that you can buy that still produces the right
    amount of power output. Look for wheels that can be used to move the generator into the right location without anyone else’s help.
  5. Quality of craftsmanship – Buying a generator is not inexpensive, but it can be the best money that you could ever spend when your lights and power go out. Look for quality components like metal parts, solid fittings and high quality electrical switches. Ask yourself if the manufacturer is well known and what is the warranty policy.

If you follow these simple 5 Things You Need To Know When Buying A Generator, you will be sure to pick the right one for your needs.

Disclaimer: Sutherlands HomeBase is not responsible for any power issues, failures, product damage or injury due to generator usage. Please follow all instructions on any generator purchased and call the manufacturer if you have any questions or concerns.

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