How to Choose a Home Backup Generator: The Complete Guide

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Does choosing the right generator for your home have you feeling overwhelmed and stressed out? It’s time to put an end to that. Because today, we’re going to teach you how to choose a home backup generator for your unique circumstances. By the end of this article, you’ll finally feel the peace of mind that comes with this investment.

There are so many factors to consider when making this decision – from choosing a home generator size to considering the power source, remote monitoring capabilities, transfer switches, and more.

Those who live in Carver & Southeastern Massachusetts have it easy. Getting the perfect whole-home generator is as simple as reaching out to us at Premier Generator. As the #1 choice in the region for whole home generator installation, you can trust that you’re in good hands with us. We can get you set up quickly, and even handle the installation and routine maintenance to ensure your investment is protected and ready when it’s called upon.

But regardless of where you’re located, we’ll guide you through how to choose a home standby generator below. First, let’s discuss the importance of choosing the right generator for your home.

Why Choosing the Right Generator for Your Home is so Important

This is probably not news to you – but not all generators are created equal. Certain brands stand apart from the rest as the most reliable choice. And when it comes to choosing a home standby generator, we can’t stress the importance of reliability enough. 

If you skimp on quality and go with a cheaper generator from a less reputable manufacturer, there’s no telling whether your equipment will perform when it’s called upon. You also won’t get nearly as long of a lifespan with these lower-end models – making it harder to justify the investment.

You’re looking to learn how to choose a generator for your home because you want to enjoy peace of mind knowing you and your family are covered no matter what life throws your way. In the event of a crazy storm or any other sort of doomsday event, you can at least rest assured your home still has a power source. 

The point we’re trying to make here is that if you don’t take this investment seriously and seek out the best of the best, what’s the point? Are you really getting peace of mind if in the back of your head you’re not certain that your generator is going to be up to the task when called upon? No – you’re not. You get what you pay for. And if you really want to eliminate this stress and uncertainty once and or all, you’ll need to invest in dependable brands/models, quality installation, and routine maintenance after the fact.  

Fortunately for you, the tips below will help you navigate this process and find the ideal standby generator for your home. So – without any further ado, here’s how to choose a home backup generator.  

How to Choose a Home Backup Generator: Factors to Consider Before Buying

how to choose a generator for your home

Ready to learn how to choose a home standby generator? As we’ve mentioned throughout this article already, choosing a home standby generator can be daunting. There are quite a few different factors to consider along this journey. But we’re here to make choosing a home generator a bit less complex. 

One of the first steps to consider is how to choose a home generator size – so let’s start there.

How to Choose a Home Generator Size: Calculating Wattage Requirements

The biggest consideration for homeowners is how to choose a home generator size. As you can imagine, the size of your generator will directly correlate to how large your home is – more specifically, what your power needs are.

First, know that generators are sized in kilowatts (kW). So – which generator size do you need? Start by getting your home’s square footage. From there, you need to calculate the size of your air conditioning unit and its style. 

At this point, you’ll have some choices to make. You’ll need to consider what you want to power. Your initial reaction to this may be…well, I want to power everything! But just understand that to power your entire home – AC, wifi, appliances, water heater, pool, security system, etc. – you’ll need to purchase a huge, expensive generator (depending on home size, of course).

This is something only you can decide for yourself – so carefully ponder what you can’t live without in the event of a lengthy power outage. 

Then, Choose a Home Generator Power Source

choosing a home standby generator

The next step in choosing a home generator is choosing a power source. How will your generator be powered? There are two main options here: natural gas (NG) or liquid propane (LP). 

It’s worth noting that you can also find diesel-powered generators on the market, but these are less common for a reason. They’re very expensive – and the advantages don’t really outweigh the cost for most homeowners.

You’ll need to weigh the pros and cons of both liquid propane, natural gas, and diesel. 

Liquid propane is more eco-friendly, has a longer shelf life, and these units run quietly. However, the large tanks these are housed in can be considered unsightly to some homeowners. Moreover, they require specialized maintenance. 

Natural gas, on the other hand, requires no sort of tanks stored on hand – as these come directly from the city or county you live in. With that said, these are not nearly as reliable as propane. That’s because natural gas can be cut just like electricity when disaster strikes.

Of the three fuel sources, diesel is the safest as it has low flammability. It’s also the most easily sourceable during a disaster and can be stored for up to 2 years. And if your home (or business) needs higher electricity loads, diesel generators are the most equipped to handle this. Best yet, they have low maintenance costs. Problems with this type include emission problems and noise. 

What About Transfer Switches?

The third step in how to choose a home standby generator is factoring in the transfer switch on your unit. This is simply what turns the generator on. There are two choices here: manual transfer switches and automatic transfer switches.

As the names suggest, manual transfer switches require you – the homeowner – to turn the generator on yourself in the event of a power outage. The automatic transfer switch (ATS) – constantly monitors your utility power and turns it on as soon as it detects an outage.

This is a really great feature to have because the last thing you want to do is go outside during an intense winter storm to turn your generator on and switch the power. But, you’ll need to ensure that the transfer switch you get is compatible with your home’s electrical panel. If you leverage the help of a quality generator specialist, this is something they’ll navigate for you. 

Consider Remote Monitoring Capabilities & Other Features

At this point in choosing the right generator for your home, we’re getting into some of the more intuitive features. Remote generator monitoring is a great addition to the rest of your smart home, allowing you to control the generator from your smartphone or mobile device.

If you’re not home and you hear that a storm or accident has knocked out power near your neighborhood, you can check on the state of your home remotely. You can also consider other features when choosing a home standby generator – like quiet operation, fire and exhaust ratings, and more.

Factor in Dependability & Warranty

This is perhaps the most important consideration to make when choosing a home generator. How dependable is it? What kind of protection comes with your investment? The last thing you want is to spend all this time choosing a home generator only for it to fail you when you need it most. Or worse – die prematurely and end up not getting the full value from your investment. 

As we’ve mentioned earlier, not all generator manufacturers produce the same quality. There are certain brands that stand apart from the rest in terms of dependability and longevity – like Kohler.

Kohler generators are the premier choice for a few reasons. They’re incredibly efficient, and you can always count on them to get your home powered when called upon. And, they come equipped with an incredible 10-year warranty to help you execute this decision with confidence. 

Want Help Choosing a Home Generator?

how to choose a generator for power outage at home

We hope this guide on how to choose a standby generator provided you with some much-needed clarity on the topic. 

As you can see, choosing the right generator for your home is as simple as a few steps: size your unit, choose your fuel source, factor in the transfer switch, and ponder other features that matter to you. Above all else, you should seek out a generator that you can count on – and make sure it comes with a solid warranty to protect your investment. 

Another great tip for anyone wondering how to choose a home generator is to consider how often you have outages. If you experience frequent outages that last more than a few hours, you can justify investing more in this purchase. On the other hand, if you rarely have outages, and don’t consider yourself the doomsday type, choosing a home standby generator with all the bells and whistles might not make much sense.

Now – if you still want help choosing a home standby generator in the Carver & Southeastern Massachusetts area, you’re in luck. We are here to help.

As the #1 generator company near you in Barnstable, Bristol, Middlesex, Norfolk, and Plymouth counties, you can rest assured you’re in good hands when you get Kohler generator installation through us. We specialize in Kohler because these generators are built to the highest quality standards in the industry. Equipped with automatic transfer switches, safety features, quiet operation, and 24/7 monitoring of your home’s electricity, you can count on these units to power up when they’re needed.

Perhaps more important than the generator itself is our installation service. We handle everything for you so you can sit back and rest assured you’re prepared for whatever life throws your way. Our standards for quality are the highest in the industry – and this is why we’ve earned the reputation as the premier choice.

What’s more, you can set it and forget it with our Kohler generator repairs, maintenance, and service plans. This will help you get the most out of your generator and allow you to truly unlock the peace of mind you’re seeking.

Final Thoughts on How to Choose a Home Generator to Enjoy Peace of Mind

There you have it – our complete guide on how to choose a home generator for power outages. At this point, the only thing left to do is start considering your unique needs and select a generator accordingly. 

If you’re in southeastern Massachusetts, don’t play the guessing game when choosing a home generator – let the experienced professionals here at Premier Generator handle this for you so you can keep your home safe and comfortable no matter what happens.