Hurricane season is here! Whether you like it or not, you’ve got to get yourself prepared, so we’re here to give you the rundown on generators.
A generator can be extremely helpful when you’re waiting for the lights to come back on, but they have to be used correctly. Many people overlook overlook basic safety measures since they aren’t familiar with generator use.
Misusing a generator can cause carbon monoxide deaths, injuries from electrocution, and burns, so make sure you follow these guidelines to ensure safety for the members of your household.
8 TIPS TO KEEP YOU SAFE NEXT TIME YOU ARE USING A GENERATOR
Keep the generator dry and do not use in rain or wet conditions. NEVER touch the generator with wet hands.
Before refueling, turn the generator off and let it cool down. Gasoline spilled on hot engine parts could cause a fire.
Store fuel for the generator in an approved safety can. Check instructions or the label for the recommended fuel type. Store the fuel outside of living areas in a shed or other protected area. Do not store it near a fuel-burning appliance, such as a natural gas water heater in a garage.
Plug appliances directly into the generator, or use a heavy duty, outdoor-rated extension cord that is rated (in watts or amps) at least equal to the sum of the connected appliance loads. Check that the entire cord has no cuts or tears.
Never try to power the house wiring by plugging the generator into a wall outlet. Known as “backfeeding,” this practice puts utility workers, your neighbors and your household at risk of electrocution.
Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area.
Install CO alarms in central locations on every level of your home and outside sleeping areas to provide early warning of accumulating carbon monoxide. If the carbon monoxide alarm sounds, move quickly to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door.
Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent CO buildup in the home. Although CO can't be seen or smelled, it can rapidly lead to full incapacitation and death. Even if you cannot smell exhaust fumes, you may still be exposed to CO. If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air RIGHT AWAY.
How to Choose the Right Size Generator
1. Add up the power requirements of the appliances and devices you will want to use.
2. Add up the wattage of all the light bulbs you will want to use.
3. Find the total amps you need by dividing watts by volts.
4. Choose a generator that produces more amps than you need – because some machines draw up to 3 times as much power when starting up, and others lose efficiency over time. The best option is a permanently-installed stationary generator.
Benefits of a Permanently Installed Generator
Permanent generators are safer and quieter than portable options
They can provide enough power to keep your entire home or selected circuits powered for days on end.
Permanent generators can increase the value of your home, and provide a great selling point if you list your home on the market in the future.
ABOUT THE MEYER LUCAS TEAM AT COMPASS
The Meyer Lucas Team at Compass is a top producing real estate team with offices in Jupiter, Florida and Scottsdale, Arizona. Founder and president, Holly Meyer Lucas is recognized as an expert in the field of real estate, specifically within the sports & entertainment luxury real estate niche, serving as the Realtor for many professional athletes who reside in the Jupiter and Palm Beach area. She has been featured across numerous national and local publications and media outlets, including offering her expert perspective on local real estate news in the Palm Beach area. Meyer Lucas agents work with a range of clientele, from first time homebuyers to multi-million dollar luxury estates. Learn more about the Meyer Lucas team at www.meyerlucas.com.