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The Ultimate Framework to Finding the Perfect Generator Size

Last Updated: 15 July 2021

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Nothing sucks like being stuck in darkness during a blackout and you’re probably tired of that now! Let’s take a wild guess, your backup generator isn’t what you thought it would be when you bought it. You’ve tried everything, but maybe the wattage power for your generator is the is 2sue. Well, this begs the question, how big of a generator do I need. In this article, we’ll walk you through the nuances of choosing a generator size and not to mention sizing generators. This should best help you in choosing a generator size that meets your power supply needs. Check this out!

A typical home loses power once in a while and this has been a struggle for some time now. However, some blackouts, such as those secondary to extreme conditions, can go for days. When caught in such situations, victims of the power outage are faced with a plethora of inconveniences and expenses, some that could have otherwise been pre-empted and avoided. To curb this, a generator should be your primary choice against such avoidable inconveniences. Choosing a generator size can be a daunting experience for many but we’re here for you!

Benefits of Choosing the Right Size Generator

With the right generator, there’s no two ways about it. Several advantages come with settling for the right size generator.

Benefits of Choosing the Right Size Generator
  • Free from sudden system shutdowns
  • Sure performance
  • Less maintenance with little operative costs
  • More durability
  • More life to the generator
  • Choose generators with top safety options.

How Generators are Sized

This is a top question for most individuals who’d be interested in buying a generator for use. Ideally, sizing generators is based on their power output and not physical dimensions like most individuals usually confuse it for. They are sized in watts or kilowatts, both being a measure of electricity. On a grand scale, it would be best if one goes for the right generator sizes for efficiency is somewhat cost-saving for those opting for less total power requirement.

Why is it so? Settling for a generator that’s too small makes it prone to overload. You’d end up forcing the machine to supply more than it can handle and that’s overloading it which in the long run disrupts the efficiency and compromises its durability. Once you overload the machine, there are two options involved; it would either turn off or overheat.

In both instances, you stand to fry the power-machine and other appliances connected to it. On the other hand, going for a power supply option that is too large is as well costly in terms of units and operation. With that in mind, let’s move on to how to calculate generator sizes.

How to Calculate Generator Size

How to Calculate Generator Size

How to calculate what size generator I need? Interesting question you’d ask! It’s however not true that in most instances, the bigger the machine the more power it can produce for the power output is normally measured in watts. As for the large generators like best dual fuel generators, their power measurements are in kilowatts.

Before we get to calculate the generator size, how about we answer this question: how do you determine the wattage capacity needed by a power supply. To understand this, let’s find the starting and running wattage. Such is important in settling for the right power demands. Ideally, you’ll find this in the identification plate or owner’s manual.

Are you familiar with the power requirement charting for your space heater? You’d appreciate that most owners lose their manual or in some situations you find yourself stuck with the power requirements specifications. There’s a power consumption chart you can browse on the internet; here, you’ll appreciate the typical wattages for common appliances like the electric chainsaw. This is to help you understand the difference between starting and running wattages. If stuck, one is free to contact the manufacturer for more clarification.

So, how do you calculate generator size? Check this out!

1. Come Up with a List of Home Appliances to Be Used

This is precisely the first step that you ought to keep in mind before making your purchase. For homeowners who wish to purchase a generator, you ought to be asking yourself if at all you’d wish for all your home appliances to run at once during sudden power outages, or you’d wish for the basic appliances only.

Keep in mind, the generator size is directly proportional to the cost incurred, for larger generators you’d have to spend more on units and operative cost. It’s often not worth the run to spend more coins on a generator which you only purpose to run as an emergency backup power source for a few days a year.

2. Based on the above Calculator, Formulate the Total Power Requirements

While at this, there are factors in play you ought to keep in mind, and this includes the starting and running watts. Earlier on we mentioned about finding the starting and starting and running watts and went further to give you calculations on how to convert amperes to watts. What is starting and running watts?

Starting watts refers to the power consumption by an appliance the moment it’s turned on while running watts refers to the amount of energy required by an appliance to run continuously after switching it on. Before settling for a generator, you ought to keep such factors in mind.

Of note, even though a generator meets the running wattage requirements, the starting wattage might not be enough.

3. A Generator that Offers Spare Power

You can never go wrong with a bigger generator that comes with spare wattage! This is a popular practice with most owners who’ve been recently buying the best dual fuel generator, an extra power supply you might spare for your best air compressor. This can as well increase its operative period as a result of fewer loads. Besides, a machine running at 100% load produces more noise; this can be a nuisance whenever you don’t want it to be.

In case you’d need a generator that requires 2000 running watts after you calculate power supply needs, go for at least 2200 rated wattage.

Power Your Home!

Well, it all boils down to the size of your home and powered appliances as this plays a major factor in determining how big a generator you need. With this, you can use a calculator to get the precise total power requirements for each device. You can browse the internet to find this calculator or you can as well check out the owner’s manual for specifications on these. Keep in mind that these power requirements vary and therefore don’t be fixed.


From this text, it is clear that great considerations are to be made when it comes to how big of a generator do you need. If you’re having trouble with this, you can contact HandyHomeMaster for more specific suggestions and recommendations for your situation.

Remember, most cheap generators only come with a pull start mechanism; you don’t wish to be stuck with such limited options. The generator size translates to the costs incurred, for larger generators you’d have to spend more on units and operative expenses.

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