<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=591165851039736&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">


Apr 6, 2023 12:55:31 PM by Logan Donahue

Standby vs Portable Generators: Which One is Right For You?

Generators are useful appliances that supply electrical power during a power outage and prevent discontinuity of daily activities or disruption of business operations. In households, generators keep necessary appliances running such as medical equipment, overhead lights, heat/air conditioning, and refrigerators. Generators are also good for the environment due to their lower carbon dioxide emissions. The two types of generators are portable and standby, whole-house generators. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, and it's important to understand them before making a decision on which one to purchase. Let’s break down the two. 
On the left is a standby Generac generator that is hooked up to the homes natural gas line. On the right is a portable generator that is outside of a home plugged into the circuit breaker box of the home. Standby generator (left) vs Portable generator (right)

Portable Generators


Portable generators are available in various sizes, making them suitable for a wide range of applications. The benefit of them being portable offers usage in a variety of locations besides your home, including camping trips, outdoor events, and other locations without power.
Because they are cheaper to buy and install than other home standby models, portable generators are a good option for homeowners that don't want to invest in a standby generator. When these generators are connected to your home's circuit-breaker panel with a transfer switch, they can power as much as a home standby generator!


These models have to be properly stored so they do not weather and have to be brought out, meaning they need to be brought out and installed each time there is a power outage. Portable generators require more gasoline, fuel, or propane to get through a prolonged outage. They also tend to be noisier and have a lower output than home standby models.
Below is a model of a portable generator that is located in a safe place next to a home. These generators should be at least 20 feet away from your home with the exhaust pipe directed away from your home for safety reasons
This is a graphic that explains the importance of generator safety. The properly placed generator is 20 feet away from the home not blowing its fumes into any windows, doors, or in an enclosed space.
Types of Portable Generators


Whole-house generators, also known as standby generators, are stationary units used to power an entire home connected to the home’s power supply. Installed by professionals, these generators are programmed to turn on automatically when there is a power outage. They run on natural gas or propane, lasting for days or weeks without refueling- not to mention their quiet operation. They can be hooked up directly to your natural gas line, ensuring you never run out of fuel.


Standby generators are expensive, but they are the top standard in backup power and outperform portable generators. While these units are a pricey investment, they're worth every penny if you are in an area that experiences power outages frequently during severe weather conditions.
Generac Standby Generator FAQ


In conclusion, both standby generators and portable generators have their advantages and disadvantages. Before making a decision, consider your budget, your power needs, and how often you will need to use the generator. If you live in an area with frequent power outages and want a reliable backup power source, a standby generator may be the best option. If you only need power for short periods or want a generator for outdoor activities, a portable generator may be more suitable. Whatever your choice, make sure to choose a generator that meets your power needs and is compatible with your electrical system.

Request a Free Generator Installation Estimate


If you live in the Delaware Valley/Greater Philadelphia area and would like to find comfort within your home, visit our website or give us a call at 215 - 245 - 3200  to learn more.

This entry was posted in Emergency Service, Energy, Generators, Power Outage, Home Improvements

Contact Us

Popular Posts

Posts by Topic

see all