Losing power is always annoying, but it can also be costly and dangerous during a winter ice storm.
Think about having to throw away spoiled food or cleaning up after frozen pipes burst.
When Maureen Ball’s neighborhood lost power in a storm, she gave her husband an ultimatum. "You know I’ve just been without heat and electricity for four days, and I said ‘I want this generator and I want it now,'" she said.
So our partners at Consumer Reports Magazine have just released a list of top rated generators, according to their tests.
If you just want to power your refrigerator, some lights and a phone charger or laptop, consider the lightest type of generator that delivers up to 2,000 watts.
A midsize model will give you up to 3500 watts, so you can also power a window air conditioner, or 1000-watt space heater, and run either your coffee maker, washing machine or hair dryer.
If your needs include running a large sump pump, a larger portable generator providing up to 7,500 watts can handle all this plus a gas furnace. Electricians can add a furnace plug, so your house stays warm in a winter outage.
And if you want whole-house power, a permanently-installed standby generator that provides up to 20,000 watts can make you forget there’s a storm outside.
Consumer Reports' top rated portable generators:
- YAMAHA EF2000isV2 - 1600 watts - $900
- PREDATOR 3500 - 3,000 watts - $770
Top rated whole-house generators:
- GENERAC RS7000E - 7,000 watts - $1,000
- CHAMPION - 100179 - $2,800
As always, don't waste your money.
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