Hurricane season is coming, and precious power is all that stands between you and the summer heat and humidity. When the wind starts to blow, and those delicate power lines become vulnerable. What will you do when the power gives out? It’s not uncommon for power to go out during even a mild storm, and keeping the lights on and AC circulating makes for a happy household.
The best way to protect yourself in the event of a power outage is a generator. Available in a variety of sizes and strengths, generators are equal parts luxury and work. If you want your generator to be there when you need it most, certain levels of care and concern must be taken to prevent age from getting the better of your machine.
Plan Ahead: Don’t wait for the hurricane to be on the news to pick out a generator. As we’ve all seen with past storms, one of the first items to fly off the shelves are generators. People will clear out a store in the name of house and home. So it’s best to purchase your generator before the crisis strikes.
Fuel: When purchasing a generator, be sure you know what type of fuel it takes and where to get it. As generators come in a bevy of different designs, so too do their fuel supplies. Whether diesel, gas or a mixture, without a supply of fuel your generator will only work for so long. Additionally, if you’ve already purchased your generator and are taking it out of storage, be sure to give it a test run. Gasoline will go bad if not used, and attempting to start a generator cold after a year of not being used will not end well.
Maintenance: Replaceable or interchangeable parts on machines were designed that way for a reason. Oftentimes, these parts are the first to go when a machine has been working hard, or not in use for a long time. When making a checklist of parts to check, be sure to include engine oil, carburetor, air and fuel filters, and spark plugs. A failure in one of these easy to replace parts can mean the difference between comfort and the cold.
These few simple steps will help when winter comes knocking and your generator is called to action. Regular maintenance of your generator, as with a car or any mechanical device, will not only ensure operation but a lasting life of service.