Not sure how generators work? Need help choosing a generator? Use the resources below to help you get the information you need and try our generator finder to calculate your power needs.
Things you should consider when buying a generator
Energizer ® makes generators that are suitable for different uses. Learn how the following senarios differ and how each require a different style of generator.
Home backup power:
Typically required in an emergency or loss of power, Energizer ® ’s larger EZG series with electric will provide the most power to run essential home appliances. The electric start feature enables you to quickly and easily get essential appliances back up and running.
DIY Project use:
For home improvement, construction and other DIY projects where more power is required Energizer ® EZG series is a valuable companion. With features like wheelkits, handles, and anti-sink mud plates, they are versatile and powerful.
For RV camping, tailgaiting, hunting and other outdoor activites the quiet and lightweight EZV series are more suitable. These inverter generators also provide a cleaner output for safely powering/ charging sensitive electronics such as laptops and smart phones.
When deciding which generator is right for you the most important thing to consider is how much power you will need. Use the Energizer ®Generator Finder to help you calculate your wattage requirements.
There are three main things to consider when calculating your power requirements:
1. Running Power
Most appliances list their power requirements in amps. This information is usally located on a stamp near the bottom or side of the product, the nameplate, or a data tag which can be found on all electric motors.
- Volts (V) - The volts must be either 120 (110-120) or 120/240. 120/240 means that the motor can be wired to operate on 120V or 240V. Energizer generators are either 120V or 120/240V.
- Amps (A) - Indicates the amps required to RUN the electric motor but doesn't consider STARTING or LOADED power requirements.
- Phase (PH) - Energizer ® Generators can only power single phase motors.
- Horsepower (HP) - Rating of how much work an electric motor can perform.
- Cycles (Hz) - All U.S. electrical appliances run at 60 cycles per second.
To determine the wattage needed, use
Amps x Volts = Watts
You can also use the Generator Finder which lists the power requirements of common household appliances.
2. Startup Power
Some appliances require extra power to start up, while others maintain the same power requirements constantly. Some products require up to 3x the amount of power to start up than to run. Examples of products that require higher startup power are:
- Refridgerators / freezers
- Water / Well pumps
- Air conditioners
- Bench grinders
- Power Tools
These types of products will require extra power when starting up, so be sure to factor this into your calcualtion when determining your power requirements. The Generator Finder lists several common appliances and their Running and Startup power requirements.
3. Using the Generator More Efficiently
Starting up your appliances one at a time is a great way to use your generator more efficiently. With some simple planning you can run more appliances or even use a smaller generator than you would otherwise.
A) Plug in each item sperately. This way you will reducing the amount of surge wattage that is required at once.
B) Start the highest wattage items first. This way there will be more available watts to accomodate the largest surge. Once that appliance has been started and is now using less watts (running watts) you can start the second appliance.
|Surge Power||Running Power|
If we wanted to start both the furnace and the refridgerator at the same time we would need a generator rated high enough to handle the initail 4000 surge watts. However, if we start them one at a time we only need 2500 watts (enough to handle one of the appliances at the running wattage and one at the surge wattage when it is turned on). This means you could purchase an EZV2800 or an EZG3500 and they would provide enough power.
How much power do I get?
When deciding which generator to buy the most important thing to know is how much power each generator can produce. Each generator has two rated power outputes.
- Peak power / Surge power - is the maximum amount of power that the generator can produce. Generators can typically only produce this amount for up to 30 minutes.
- Rated power / Running power - is the power a generator can produce for long periods of time. Usually about 90% of the peak power rating.
Rated power is typically used when determining if the generator will provide enough power for your application.
Type of Power
Not all generators are created equal. Some generators produce cleaner output. Fluctuations in power can cause equipment to shut down or even get damaged. Energizer generators use either AVR (automatic voltage regulation) or Inverter technology to create clean power.
AVR (automatic voltage regulation)- EZG series generators use AVR to consistently control voltage keeping it constant, regardless of the load. This eliminates spikes and brownouts.
Inverter- EZV series inverter generators use inverter technology to produce the cleanest power of all. This clean power is beneficial for sensitive electronic devices such as products that have microprocessors, phones, TV’s, game consoles, DVD players, and some appliances.
The noise level of each generator should be considered when determining which model is right for you. Energizer ® generators have a decibel rating. The decibel chart compares the noise levels of some Energizer ® generators to everyday sounds.
Generators operate and higher or lower noise levels depending on the load. A generator powering a high load will operate at a louder noise level than if it were powering a smaller load. When choosing your generator be sure to consider this. Depending on your application you may wish to purchase a generator with a larger capacity than required so that you can operate it at a lower noise level.
The graph above shows how the noise levels of Energizer ® generators varies based on load. The quietest models, the EZV series inverter generators, feature ECO throttle. This reduces the noise level by lowering the engine speed when operating at lower loads. EZV series also feature a sound dampening thermoplastic shell to further reduce noise. As a result, the EZV inverter generators are the best choise where extra quiet noise levels are required.
Some parks and campgrounds have noise level restrictions for generators so is best to consider what applications and environments you will be using your generator in before purchasing.
Run time is the duration that the generator will run without needing refueling. Fuel efficiency, fuel capacity, and power load are all factors that effect run times.
Energizer ® EZV series inverter generators use Eco-Throttle, which automatically adjusts the engine speed to match the power needed. This allows for maimum fuel efficiency. The EZV series also features class leading fuel capacity resuslting in very long run times.
When deciding which generator is right for your application it is important to consider the other features the generator might include. For example; the EZV series inverter generators feature an integrated USB port for charging electronic devices.
Consider how you will be transporting and storing the generator. For compact, lightweight models consider the Energizer ® EZV series. For larger units wheel kits and handle kits are included (such as the EZG3500, EZG6250 and EZG7250).
Size and Transport
Use our handy Generator Finder tool to help you find which Energizer ® generator fits your application.