While a properly sized portable home generator may work fine for for your home, make sure the method that you use for powering up your home will be done safely by considering the following information.
Some customers prepare for the possibility of power outages by buying an electric generator as a standby system to keep lights and appliances running until service is restored.
Home generators may be able to save food in your refrigerator or freezer during a prolonged outage, let you keep your home office running, or power other essential equipment.
Generators can be expensive and noisy. They can also pose serious safety hazards to you and to others, so please follow all safety instructions provided by the manufacturer.
The law requires that customers with a permanently installed or portable generator do not connect it to another power source, such as your Electric Utility Company's power lines. If you own and operate a generator, you are responsible for making sure that electricity from your unit cannot "back feed," or flow into the utility power lines. For safety's sake, be sure to use your generator correctly. If you don't, you risk damaging your property and endangering your life and the lives of electrical utility line workers who may be working on power lines some distance from your home.
Permanent Stand By Generators
When a home generator is permanently connected to a customer's electric system, it energizes the building's wiring. This type of installation requires a device that prevents the generator from being connected to the electrical utility's power lines.
Consider these Generator Safety Tips
Only a qualified professional, such as a licensed electric contractor, should install a permanent standby generator.
A double-pole, double-throw transfer switch (see diagram) is the recommended device to keep your generator from back feeding into the electric utility provider's system. The switch also keeps the electrical utility company's power from re-energizing your house wiring while your generator is running, protecting your generator, wiring and appliances from damage when your service is restored.
Have all additions to your house wiring inspected by your city or county building department.
When installation is complete, call your electric utility provider to let them know about your back-up system. They will make a note in their records to remind their workers of your generator if they are working on an outage in your area. In some cases, electric utility line workers may ask to check your electric generator transfer switch for safety.
If you already have a permanently installed standby generator but you don't know if it's installed properly, call your local building inspector or a licensed contractor for help.
You are responsible for any injuries or damage to your property, your neighbors' or the electric utility company, from an improperly installed or operated generator.
Portable Home Generators
Portable home generators are designed to be connected only to selected appliances or lamps. These generators never should be connected directly to a building's wiring system.
Before starting your generator, carefully read and follow all of the manufacturer's instructions.
Be sure that the total electric load on your generator won't exceed the manufacturer's rating.
Always locate your generator where its exhaust will vent safely.
Prioritize your needs. Use the lowest wattage light bulbs that provide a safe level of light, reserving power for additional lighting elsewhere or a small appliance. Remember that the greater the load on your home generator, the more fuel it will use.
Keep cords out of the way so they don't present a tripping hazard—especially in dimly lit doorways or halls. Never run cords under rugs or carpets where heat might build up or damage to a cord may go unnoticed.
Extension cords must be properly sized to carry the electric load. Overloaded cords can overheat and cause fires or damage to equipment.
Electrical Wiring Video #2
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Perfect for Homeowners, the Handyman, and Electricians Includes: Complete with Practical Hands On Wiring Instructions Installing Electrical Wiring for Generator Panels and Transfer Switches Loaded with On the Job Electrical Pictures and Wiring Diagrams Great Help for Wiring a Generator and Transfer Switch ....and much more. » Click here to learn more about Home Electric Wiring
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generator safety electrical - 2070
Installing a Home Generator
Electrical Project Skill Level:
Licensed Electrical Contractor, Not Recommended for Homeowners.
Electrical Tools Required:
Electricians pouch of hand tools and the various power tools necessary for installing the generator and transfer switch. Estimated Time:
Depends on the type and size of the generator and transfer switch and the available access to the project area. Electrical Safety:
Any existing electrical wiring within the immediate area that may interfere with the installation of the transfer switch may need to be relocated if necessary.
Electrical Wiring Parts and Materials:
Electrical parts and materials for generator wiring projects should be approved for the specific project and compliant with local and national electrical codes.
Electrical Codes and Inspections:
Installing a generator and transfer switch must be well thought out and performed with a permit with all work being inspected.
This is a testing tool that is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
This is great to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring, is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets
Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency
Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included
Tests standard 3-wire outlets UL Listed Light indicates if wiring is incorrect, Very handy and easy to use.
A wire stripping tool used to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets.
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