Knowledge is Power: The Ultimate Generator Buying Guide

Is it important to have a generator for your home or business?

There’s a reason why generator sales continue to increase. There are more storms and emergency situations than before. A generator is great to have when you’re or you do the going camping prefer to spend time outdoors.

When you’re ready to get a generator, how do you know what to look for?

Keep reading this generator buying guide to find out the top generator buying tips and how to maintain your generator when you bring it home.         

Know What You’re Using the Generator For

Do you know that there are several different types of generators? Different types of generators serve different types of purposes.


While camping generators are associated with a loud noise, that is not the case any longer. There are inverter generators, which are affordable generators that are much quieter and more enjoyable than conventional generators.


If you think that your recreational generator can pinch hit in an emergency situation, think again. A recreational generator will only power a couple of appliances, and it will go through fuel pretty quickly.

An emergency generator has a larger engine and is built to power up your home in an emergency. They also have fuel tanks large enough to handle the need to power up your home for hours at a time.

Professional Grade

These are the generators that you don’t mess around with. These are heavy-duty generators that are built with durability and quality in mind. Professional-grade generators are designed to run on a daily basis on contracting jobs, like if you have a roofing business and need power.

Wattage Ratings

The wattage ratings on a generator are important to consider when you’re buying a generator. Generators have two wattage ratings: rated watts and maximum wattage rating.

Maximum wattage rating is also known as the starting rating. When you start your generator, it’ll put out a certain amount of wattage, which is more than rated watts.

If you try to run your generator for a long time using the maximum watts, you will burn it out. The maximum watts is just intended to run for a very short period to start the generator.

Rated watts may also be listed as continuous watts. This is the number you need to pay attention to. This refers the wattage the generator can produce over a long period of time.

You’ll also need to take the type of outlets into consideration. Smaller generators will typically require a 120v outlet, while larger generators need a 240v outlet. When shopping for generators, you need to make sure you have the right outlet available outside.

You may need to get an electrician wire an outdoor outlet for you to use the generator.

Fuel and Battery Sources

You’ll find that most generators run on gas, like these generators from Kruger Power. There are a few options to consider. Diesel generators can be more efficient but typically require an upgrade.

Battery operated generators can be convenient because they’re much quieter, and they’re solar powered. On the downside, they produce little power at about 1800 watts, which would be fine for camping or tailgating, but not much else.


You want to have a conversation while you’re powering the generator, especially in a recreational situation. A solar-powered or inverted recreational generator would be your choice.

Once you get into larger, more powerful generators, there really isn’t a quiet option to consider.

Easy to Start

There are different ways to start the generator. The easiest to use is the electric start. Most generators don’t come with an electric start, so you’d have to decide if it’s worth the upgrade.

Easy to Transport

Do you plan to transport your generator? You want to make sure that you can do that easily. You may be surprised to learn that generators don’t always come with a wheel kit. You’ll want to take that into consideration before you spend money on the generator.

Tips to Maintain Your Generator

The last thing you want for your generator is to have it not work when you need it most. With some of these tips, you can keep your generator running no matter when you need it.

Keep Gas Nearby

Did you get a low-cost generator? Most low cost and some high-end models will continue to run as they run out of gas. They’ll be running on fumes, which actually drain the magnetic field of the generator. That will cause it to break down and it won’t hold power when you restart it.

You’ll have to bring it to a repair shop to get it fixed by getting the coils reenergized. The lesson here: always make sure there’s gas in the tank.

Don’t Let Gas Go Stale

That seems like a funny headline. Do you know what the number one reason why generators don’t start? They have old fuel that’s gone stale. It causes buildup in the engine and the fuel tank.

What you can do at the end of every storm season is to drain the tank with a hand pump.

Basic Maintenance Checklist

You want to perform regular maintenance on your generator regularly. You’ll want to check your generator for dirt, debris, and oil outside of the generator to keep it running smoothly.

Take the time to test the battery and check the oil and coolant levels. When you test and inspect your generator on a regular basis, your generator is ready to go.

Top Tips in This Generator Buying Guide

Having a generator can provide safety and security for your home and family during an emergency situation. It can also provide comfort when you’re out in the wilderness enjoying the great outdoors.

By reading this generator buying guide, you should have discovered that not all generators are created equal. Generators have many types and uses, and you want to make sure you get the right generator to fit your needs.

Once you bring your generator home, it’s critical to keep it well maintained. There are simple things that you can do to make sure it works when you need it.

For more great home tips, check out our blog for the latest articles