Jump to content


Emergency generator for dummies, please...

Recommended Posts

Obviously it's too late for this storm, LOL, but I'd like to know what's involved in getting a generator set up for our house. There's a lot of info out there, but I'd rather go to people I trust with *experience*!


Do most generators run on gasoline? What are the options and what do we need to do to "hook it up" to the house?


Thank you if you can spare the time to explain on this lovely winter day. :D LOL

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We have some sort of switch so we turn the switch for the house electricity to off (I think).
This switch is a key part of the equation. The switch has to be designed so that your house loads CANNOT be connected to the utility grid at the same time that the generator is. There are two main safety issues addressed: 1) It is critical that your generator does not put any power back onto the utility grid when linemen are out there trying to work on it and 2) When the power comes back on, your generator will not be in sync with the grid and bad things could happen (though a circuit breaker will likely blow in this case).


Many people around here would recommend that you simply purchase or make a cable to allow you to plug your generator into your dryer outlet (assuming yours has a four-pronged plug), turn off your main breaker and power your house through your dryer plug. I recommend against this approach since this does not prevent you from trying to run your generator without turning off the main breaker. While the safety breaker in the generator would likely blow, it is best not to do this.

I know it is a special type of outlet; it had to be installed specially (not just the same as a regular exterior outlet). It was not a big deal to do it.
Yes, that type of plug has prongs (a male plug) instead of a normal plug. Between that plug, the wiring, the switch and the cable to the generator you can expect to spend over $500 to get this set up. (That's why so many people backfeed through their dryer plug...)


Be sure to NEVER run your generator in your garage, as the carbon monoxide can build up rather quickly and kill you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...