Choosing the right size generator is one of the most important factors to consider when shopping for a whole house generator. Getting one that’s too small can fall short of powering your appliances in the event of a power outage and getting one that’s too big can waste resources and cost more money in the long run.
Size of Your Appliances
When it comes to sizing your generator, there are several factors that play into the process. One of the most important is the size of your appliances, which is critical in determining what kind of generator you need for your home.
The first step in sizing your generator is to list out all of the electronics, tools, and appliances that you plan to power in case of an outage. Once you’ve compiled your list, determine the power consumption of each item by adding up their wattages.
Next, figure out how much power it takes to start up each appliance on your list by looking up their starting wattage (also known as surge wattage), which is usually three to seven times higher than the wattage they need to run continuously. This is an effective and easy way to estimate your power needs without putting yourself at risk for overloading your generator. It’s also a great idea to add 15% or so to your estimated power need to account for future electronics that you’d like to have access to in the event of an outage.
A whole house generator is a permanent installation outside your home that supplies power to your entire home whenever there is a power outage or equipment failure. They come in several different sizes depending on how much electricity you need to run your appliances.
Load management helps prevent a generator from overloading by controlling the power output of high-current loads, which can cause the system to shut down or shed circuits during an outage. It allows you to prioritize the use of key specific items, such as heating and cooling systems, and block non-essential loads from operating under generator power.
The Champion 100868 Load Management Module features aXis Home Standby Technology, which lets you monitor your generator output and prevents overloading by only allowing operation of your high demand appliances when enough generator power is available. It also has lock-out functionality for non-critical loads under generator power, freeing up more generator capacity for other important loads in your home.
When it comes to generator sizing, the fuel source plays an important role. It is best to start with a fuel type that can be readily available in your area, like natural gas or propane.
Another consideration is how long it will take for your generator to run on 5 gallons of fuel. This varies depending on the size of your generator, as well as the operating load.
A 5000-watt whole house generator should run for eight to ten hours on five gallons of gasoline, while a smaller engine or more efficient design will be able to get longer.
Choosing the right size whole house generator for your home is an important step in ensuring that you’re prepared to keep your home safe during a power outage. It’s also essential to have a refueling plan in place so that you don’t run out of power during a disaster.