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We had a power outage for several hours last night that always prompts the question: Do I need a generator?

I typically don't feel the need, and can live quite well (short term) as our house has a gas stove and fireplace which can run without power. So it would mostly be for the tv or some other essential.

Unlike our neighbor who has an automatic whole home generator which is incredibly loud, that kicks in as soon as power is out so he can watch tv uninterrupted, and will run noisily through the night...grrr...

anybody else here own generators? love them? regrets? recommendations?
 

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When the power's out, I wish I had one. Chances are, the stores can't take my credit card at the time because the power's out - so no spontaneous purchases so far.

And my power doesn't go out very often. It mostly underground cables in my area. If it did, I could perhaps justify the cost of one, but it would be doing nothing a huge majority of the time.

If you need power just to run home entertainment stuff, perhaps a couple of deep charge batteries and an inverter/charger can do the job. That stuff is very small load, now that it's all solid state. If you need to run a fridge or two, or a furnace motor, a generator is probably a better choice. You probably wouldn't want to run an electric stove or electric heat with a generator. And probably not the hot tub either.
 

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I have one - cost 500 at Costco. It's pretty quiet.
 

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Short of buying the full time system it comes down to wattage and quality. Honda's seem to be the best and very quiet. Then then rest go downhill from there. Figure out your minimum wattage and how much you want to spend and go shopping. If you only need it once in a blue moon get the Costco or similar (always use fuel stabilizer). If you expect a lot of use or need to depend on it get the Honda. I was about to spring for the full system after a nasty winter with no power for four days. Luckily Hydro added a second circuit to my hood after that and it's been fine since.
 

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I have one - cost 500 at Costco. It's pretty quiet.
I bought mine on sale at Costco a few years ago. Champion 9500/7500 watts, electric start. Runs my whole house but I barbecue instead of using my stove. Pretty well runs everything else, even my barn lights and heaters to stop the horses water from freezing. Bought it on sale for around $550. They sell 11500/9500 watts ones now for around $850 (not on sale). For me, one of the tricky situations is knowing when the power comes back on. I've set up hydro text notices telling me when the power is or will be going out and how long the outage will be. Works well for me. Last check to be sure the power is back on is the green light on my meter. As for neighbour, closest neighbour is 500 feet away and my generator runs in my detached garage. If I listen hard enough when I go outside, I can just hear their generators running. Would never be without one now. Think "I don't even know the power is out"

Most expensive item next to the generator was the 75 foot power cable that runs from the generator in my detached garage to the house.

I should have added that I used around $75 for gas running 24 hours. Not cheap but powers only been out a few times since I bought mine. I run it spring and fall for an hour just to keep it in good working order for any emergency.
 

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What are you able to run with that?
Champion 2000 watts. Doesn't weigh much.

It'll run a lot of various appliances according to the instructions.

I've used it mainly for lights, vacuum cleaner, electric bbq and 3 gallon 1 HP compressor.
 

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I use a Champion 3000W to run my cabin up north. Not as quiet as a Honda but it works and always starts first pull. Costs about $1.00 per hour in gas.
If you want one as a backup system for your home you'll need to put a proper transfer switch in.
 

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Transfer switch is a really good idea but parts and the labour of someone qualified is going to cost as much as a middle of the road generator, if not more. You could always back feed the panel via something like the dryer plug with a suicide chord or have something installed close to where you'd be running the genny but that would cost as well and its a bit hillbilly. Whatever you do make sure to disconnect the main so you are not feeding power back into the system, could hurt someone down the line trying to fix things.
 

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Like you, we can get by fairly well without power as we have lots of camping equipment including flashlights, lantern, stove and coffee perk.

However, a few years ago I picked up one of those MotoMaster Eliminator power boxes and I have found it to be quite handy when the power goes out - mostly for charging my phone and powering our wifi modem, so I can get information about the power outage through my phone or tablet (or watch Netflix). It certainly won't power a TV or lights for any length of time, but it is pretty handy for a fraction of the cost of a generator. Though you do need to keep it charged for it to be useful.
 

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I once had to run generators for 3 straight weeks on a job (the ESA are a bunch of pussies who won't set foot in a former grow op to get the power going until it's all clear).

The Honda Eu series purr like kittens. Ultra quiet, but they still vibrate. The neighbours wanted to murder me.

I have one, but it's at my office.

It's down the road on sluse, if you ever want to borrow it.

Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Champion 2000 watts. Doesn't weigh much.

It'll run a lot of various appliances according to the instructions.

I've used it mainly for lights, vacuum cleaner, electric bbq and 3 gallon 1 HP compressor.
You vacuum when the power goes out?
 

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I bought a Cummins brand 1800W gas inverter generator, about 10 years ago. We used to use it bush camping, middle of nowhere.

When the power goes out I fire it up. Put it on the back deck. Run an extension cord. Plug in the fridge, a light or two and maybe a TV or stereo. Helps pass the time. Keeps the beer cold. I don’t need it often. It is handy though.

I’d personally avoid the Champion brand at Costco. Cheap and loud. I’ve seen them fail very early.

If there ever is a major disaster it may come in handy. If I can get any fuel. I need my morning coffee!
 
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A guy who was quite a bit older than me told me to always get a diesel motor because they always start after they sit for a long time, and they are more fuel efficient. And you can burn furnace fuel.
 

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3000W here through transfer switch to another panel, where I have my freezer, fridge, kitchen lights and two wall outlets. We loose power quite often in the middle of the jungle, so when I built, I put in a gaz stove and a slow burning wood stove.

We are in the middle of the jungle.

 

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I have a 13kw Generac that has been a total blessing over the past dozen years of living in the boonies. We have lost power many times during storms - up to seven straight days once - and many more times for a few days or hours.

It starts on its own and feeds the whole house - except for what runs on 220. Just can't imagine being without one back here. Costs around $5k installed. Not cheap (and yes, they are very noisy) but the alternatives are just not good enough for me.
 

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You vacuum when the power goes out?
Yeah, it's a good time to get things like that done...lol

Actually it's mainly just for portable power and Ive used it to vacuum the inside of the truck and run a carpet cleaner for that as well. I live in a condo so it's not like I can run a power cord out to a driveway and operate electric tools and such.
 

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I've got 1400 and 3500 Honda's for jobs where there is no power. Seldom used, and the gasoline we buy these days degrades so fast that it seems every time I go to use one I have to spend time draining out the old gas and cleaning the carburetor. Unless your power goes out a lot and for extended periods of time, I wouldn't bother. At least with a gasoline engine. A diesel powered generator would be different. Diesel fuel can sit for ever and it still burns when it needs to. As long as the battery is charged, a diesel will run for you.
 
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