Portable Electric Generator Safety

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With weather having an impact on electrical service in many parts of our nation, some people are turning to portable electric generators as a source of temporary electricity for their homes. This seeming convenience though, could itself be the source of disaster.

If not properly installed and operated, a portable generator can become a deadly device that kills via electric shock or carbon monoxide fumes. Using a generator indoors can kill you in minutes!

If a portable electric generator is connected to the main electrical supply coming into the house, the electrical generator could feed back into the electric supplier's system and electrocute workers who are repairing the electrical lines. To avoid back-feeding of electricity into utility systems, a homeowner must have a qualified, licensed electrician install a double-pole, double-throw transfer switch between the generator and utility power in compliance with all state and local electrical codes. (A minimum of 10-gauge wiring must be used.) In addition to protecting linemen by ensuring proper wiring, a homeowner should carefully calculate wattage requirements to prevent overloading and damage to appliances and the generator.

Carbon Monoxide Hazards

Follow these safety tips to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning:

Electrical Hazards

Follow these tips to protect against shock and electrocution:

Fire Hazards

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