With the UK Government warning of potential blackouts due to the National Grid’s potential energy crisis that could cripple the country. 

If this happens, your primary power supply could fail, leaving you in the dark and unsure when it will return. You must be ready and have a strategy in place if something occurs.

Think About Back-Up Power… 

This might not be a problem if the blackout is only temporary; you can simply endure it and wait for the main power to be restored. However, how would you manage if you were to go without power for a longer period of time? Or continuous power cuts throughout the winter months? 

You can buy or hire emergency power supplies from businesses like ours, such as generators for example, which could be helpful. When the power comes back on, simply turn the generator off and hire it again.

Backup Generator vs. Portable Generator 

A whole-house generator usually referred to as a backup generator, cannot be transported. It provides backup power for your complete home during a power outage and is connected to your home’s natural gas supply. Families with members who depend on life-supporting medical equipment or those who reside in harsh areas where power outages are frequent may find this type of generator to be appealing.

On the other hand, portable generators are a less expensive option and are only meant to be used as an emergency backup for vital devices and appliances. Portable generators must be stored outside in a dry environment and run on gasoline. The improper use of one can be exceedingly harmful and result in electric shock, electrocution, fire, burns, and carbon monoxide poisoning through the exhaust.

How to Safely Use a Portable Generator 

You can feel comfortable securely using a portable generator during your subsequent power outage by paying attention to these pointers and the owner’s manual.

  • Never operate a generator indoors, including in a garage or other partially covered area. To prevent harmful gases from entering your home, generators should be installed outside, in a dry location at least 20 feet away from windows, vents, and doors.
  • Install a battery-operated carbon monoxide detector on each floor of your house. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headache, nausea, dizziness, and vomiting. If you begin to notice any of these symptoms, go outside right away to get some fresh air.
  • All lights and appliances should be unplugged or turned off before using a portable generator. Use an extension cord that is heavy-duty, outdoor-rated, and capable of handling the electrical power of the appliance to connect it directly to the generator. Prioritise what needs to be plugged into a generator in order to prevent overloading it (for example, refrigerators, medical equipment, laptops, cell phone and heating or cooling devices). Never connect two extension cords together.
  • Fuel must be available continuously for portable generators to operate. Never overfill the tank because fuel expands. Fuel is also quite combustible, thus the generator must be totally cooled before receiving more fuel. Long-term storage causes fuel to start deteriorating. Stabilisers for gasoline (available at home improvement retailers) will prolong the life of the fuel (between 18 months to two years). Fuel needs to be kept in authorised containers in a cold, dry location.
  • Turn off and unplug all appliances from the generator before shutting them down. Drain all of the fuel after it has cooled before storing it.
  • Perform upkeep in between uses. To make sure your generator is prepared before the next power loss, regularly check its oil and fuel filters, spark plugs, and oil level, and look for cracks or leaks.

How Much Power Do I Need for my Home? 

Kilowatts (KW) or Watts (W) are used to measure power (kW). There are 1000 watts in a kilowatt. By multiplying voltage by amperes, one can calculate Watts. A 120-volt gadget that draws 5 amps consumes 600 watts of power (120V x 5A). This is stated on some appliance tags as Volt-Amps or VA, while others list their power requirements in watts or kilowatts.

No matter what voltage level they are intended to operate on, appliances still need a certain amount of power. A 600-watt appliance only needs 2.5 amps of current while working at 240 volts, but a 600-watt appliance running at 120 volts needs 5 amps, which is twice as much current. Because power rather than voltage is what matters, generator capacity is measured in watts or kilowatts.

Maximum or surge power and continuous power are the two power ratings for generators. The number of watts or kilowatts the generator can constantly produce without overloading is referred to as continuous power. For starting motors, maximum or surge power is a higher output that lasts just a few seconds. Motors require two to six times more electricity at the beginning than they do continuously. This power surge must be sustained for several seconds without overwhelming the generator.

Typical Appliance Power Requirements 

The normal power needs for starting and operating several common appliances are listed in the following table. The actual power needs depend on the manufacturer, the motor size, and the type of motor being utilised. For devices without motors, only running watts are relevant.

ApplianceRunning WattsStarting Watts
Sump Pump 1/2 HP10503200
Well Pump 1 HP20006000
Furnace 3/5 HP Fan8752625
Window Air Conditioner 6,000 BTU9002700
Window Air Conditioner 12,000 BTU17005100
Coffee Maker1200
Toaster Oven1550
Hot Plate1200
Electric Frying Pan1200
Microwave Oven 1,000 Watt1000

Don’t Get Left in the Dark, Contact Bellwood Rewinds Today! 

While it’s always best to hope for the best and expect power outages to be short-lived, it’s important to have a plan in place just in case. That’s where Bellwood Rewinds can help – with our team of experts, we can provide you with a generator that will keep your home or business running smoothly during a blackout. So don’t wait until it’s too late; contact us today to find out more about our generators and how they could benefit you during an emergency.