Generators Tips

Read these 7 Generators Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Home Improvement tips and hundreds of other topics.

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What should I run with my portable generator?

What to run?

When the power goes out, plug into the furnace (in cold weather), and the refrigerator. These are the two most important appliances.

Where should I run my portable generator?

Safety first

Never run your portable generator inside the house or the garage. Gasoline engines produce carbon monoxide which is very dangerous.

Why does it take so long to get the power back on?

After the storm

When the power goes out because of a storm, chances are that trees have fallen on the power lines.
The worst reason that several houses in a neighborhood seem to be ignored by the repair crews is that no one called to report the outage. Each of the neighbors assumed that someone else had called the power company. Don't be afraid to call. Besides, what else do you have to do?

Why does it take so long to get the power back on?

Crew safety

One reason it takes so long to restore power is to ensure the safety of the crews. For a large outage, each crew will repair one circuit at a time. They start at the substation and work toward the end of the circuit. If more than one crew worked on a particular circuit, there is a possibility that someone could be electrocuted.

Can I connect my generator to my breaker panel?

Don't power the breaker panel

Don't connect your portable generator to your breaker panel. Most generators produce only enough electricity to run a couple of 20 amp circuits. You can't run your whole house with a small portable generator.

Where do I store cords?


Keep two or three extension cords coiled with your generator so you will know where they are when you need them.

How do I use a portable generator?

Go for the basics

If you are fortunate enough to have a temporary (portable) generator, learn how to start your generator before you need it. Start your generator once a month and let it run for 20 minutes.

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Joe Wallace