Hurricane Season Has Begun AGAIN.
The Atlantic hurricane season occurs from June 1 to November 30, sharply peaking from late August through September.
Now that you’ve been warned, it’s a good time to check the generator you have or consider buying one if you live in any type storm-prone region.
Of course, it doesn’t take a hurricane or a tornado to knock out power. Power outages can also occur during a heat wave, as many people across the country learned in the past. So take advantage of any break in the weather to examine your generator—especially since repair shops will be too busy to help you once the next storm hits.
With a gasoline-powered portable generator, the onus is on you to regularly put it through its paces and keep it supplied with fresh fuel, oil, and whatever else the owner’s manual specifies. So if you haven’t been firing yours up monthly, do it now. If the generator has an electric start, charge the battery the start the generator. To test the whole system, use your transfer switch (if you have one) to put a load on the generator.
And what if your portable generator won’t start? If you left old fuel sitting in the machine without at least occasional starting it, you might need a carburetor clean or rebuild, which requires professional service. Going forward, add stabilizer to gasoline before fueling up or use non-ethanol gasoline. When a storm is approaching, stock up on gasoline. On average, a gas-powered generator uses about a gallon an hour. Store your gas only in ANSI-approved containers in a cool, well-ventilated place.
Checking a stationary generator, which is installed on a fixed site on your property, is less of a concern because most perform periodic routine self-diagnosis and display alerts when service is needed. Still, you typically need to check the display for messages. A few generators can be installed with add-on products that can e-mail or text you and a servicing dealer if service is needed.
Keep Your Property Safe
You can follow tropical storm forecasts on the website of the National Hurricane Center. When a storm is approaching, NOAA recommends that you secure your property beforehand.
- Keep the trees around your home trimmed to prevent damage from broken branches.
- Bring outdoor furniture and other loose items inside so they don’t become airborne missiles.
- Make sure your windows and doors close securely, especially your garage door, which is the most vulnerable.
- When a storm is imminent, put your car in the garage or move it to another secure location if possible.
Need a Generator?
Fill out our Contact us form and have our experts design the perfect system for your home or business (and your budget). If you already have a generator, to avoid damaging your appliances or electronics, consider installing a transfer switch for a portable generator. Some municipalities require a permit to install a stationary generator, so factor the time that process can take into your planning.