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 Guide to Buying a Generator

Home Standby Generators are used for restoring power to your entire home.  These generators can automatically turn on/off and will power your house in case of an outage.  They're permanently installed outside your home, and will require a trained professional to install, since they are connected to your breaker box and require a fuel source such as propane or natural gas.

     Cost:  $4000 and up, not including installation

     Primary use:  whole-house backup

     Fuel source:  propane or natural gas

     Installation:  professional install required

     Portability:  not portable

     Start:  automatic

Portable Generators come in a wide variety of sizes.  These generators are typically used for powering homes, job sites, and as an emergency backup power source.  In most cases these generators will not power your entire home.  This means you will need to choose which item/items in your home to power if you're running it off a portable generator.

     Cost:  $300-$4000 for top models

     Primary use:  partial home power, portable jobsite power

     Fuel source:  propane or gas

     Installation:  no installation cost

     Portability:  yes

     Start:  electric or pull start

Portable Inverter Generators are lighter, quieter, more fuel efficient and produce cleaner energy than other types.  They are typically designed for more recreational uses like tailgating, camping, and boating; however, they can be used to power some household equipment.  Inverters provide a more consistent and reliable power source without some of the power surges and lags of a typical generator.  This even power delivery is necessary for products that re sensitive to electricity like phones, TVs and some appliances.

     Cost:  $300-$5000 for top models

     Primary use:  tailgating, camping, boating

     Fuel source:  propane or gas

     Installation:  no installation cost

     Portability:  yes

     Start:  electric or pull start

Stop at Mertz Lumber & Supply to see which generator is right for you!