Warning: You Will Make These Mistakes When Using Your Generator in Snow!

Is it safe to run my generator in snowy weather? Will snow damage my generator beyond repair? Should I use my generator indoors during a snowstorm?

If you find yourselves asking these questions often, you are in desperate need of our help!

Stop wasting time and find out whether it’s safe to use a generator in the snow in this generator bible/guide: 

Solving The Mystery

A generator is a sensitive device, which means any small inconvenience could cost you a lot of time and money. Many generators claim to be weatherproof, but none can stand the cold winds from a snowstorm

So the answer is no, you cannot run a generator in snow. 

A blanket of snow can cover up the generator, including its vents preventing exhaustion of fumes and heat. This can result in overheating the power source, followed by either a shut-down or explosion. 

Moreover, melted ice can leak into the generator’s body and result in electrical failures. The electrocution of panels and wiring can cause a short circuit and fire.

However, you can’t give up just yet! Generators were invented to help you in crisis, so it’s a given there is a solution to this problem. 

Manufacturers came up with plausible inventions and methods to allow a comfortable experience with your generator in times of emergency. 

Learn About “Generator Etiquettes” 

A generator is an expensive purchase, once in a lifetime opportunity for most families. You need to follow several rules and instructions before using a generator to ensure an extended lifespan of the device. 

Electrical Problems – Not As Technical As You Think

While using a machine as complex as a generator, you are bound to be exposed to big risks. These dangers are often quite serious and need your utmost attention.

1. Connections – To Form A Lasting Bond

Many customers overestimate their technical abilities and try to connect the generator to the resident grid panel by themselves. This is frowned upon as it is a major health hazard.

Establishing a connection using extension cords without professional help can lead to the circuit being fried and the power being tripped.

Furthermore, exposed wires can lead to electrical dangers, especially with kids present. 

Extension cords cannot carry the electrical weight required by a house or a building and hence fail to supply the total energy produced by the generator, and the extra energy goes to waste.

Hence why, experts advise using a transfer switch.

Transfer switches allow safe energy transport from the backup power source to the main panel.

Furthermore, in the case of a power outage, this connection allows the automatic initiation of the generator without manual labor. 

This could not be possible with the usage of an extension cord.

2. Weather Conditions – The Storm Will Catch You!

When your generator is exposed to moisture or heavy winds, it is bound to malfunction after a certain usage time. 

Rainfall and storms encourage the failure of the secondary source. When the water leaks into the structure of the machinery, it can interrupt the ventilation system. 

When a generator fails to release fumes and heat easily, it overheats and builds internal pressure. Now, you are at risk of an explosion or a blast.

In addition to this, you should never touch a generator in any storm with bare hands as the device’s entire surface is circulating electricity.

Always use a glove or maintain distance when working with a generator. 

3. Overloading – Beginners’ Worst Fear

One of the biggest faults of beginners in the power industry is overloading their equipment, and this is because it is easy to miscalculate the energy a generator can supply. 

Hence, you should calculate the power required by your appliances before purchasing a generator. Remember, these appliances should include only the essential electronics. 

Once you estimate the energy required by your appliances, buy a generator with a slightly higher capacity. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Your generator will not function if it cannot sustain the house/building and short-circuit, resulting in a fire. 

Ventilation and Location – Relation Between The Two

Generators release toxic fumes, poisonous gasses, and hot air every time they are used. It is difficult to avoid these emissions and a bother to look after.

These discharges result from the machine’s function and production of power

Carbon monoxide is the biggest pollutant from a generator. Unfortunately, it is also the most dangerous. Excessive levels of the gas lead to immediate suffocation and fatality

If you feel uncomfortable around a running generator, you need to analyze symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. 

Furthermore, you need to be aware of other lethal substances your device releases. These include soot particles, smoke, and heat. 

Soot particles and smoke can cause chronic breathing problems if not allowed to circulate in the atmosphere properly. This is a health hazard to consumers with respiratory issues

How Do You Avoid This?

It would be best if you placed your generator at a distance from your house. And it needs to be an open space allowing efficient ventilation

A backyard or a roof are ideal choices for the placement of your device, as it will run in such a wide space without any discomfort. 

Do not attempt to run your generator indoors like a garage or a huge room. It is extremely unsafe, even with all doors and windows open!

Fuel Safety – Crucial Yet Forgetful

Fuel supervision and safety are the most underrated form of maintenance you can provide your generator with.

Using gasoline requires thorough oversight as the liquid is flammable. Additionally, It is a risky combustible to reserve in a place, especially with the non-adults present. 

Furthermore, you need to regularly check the quality and levels of fuel in your generator’s tank, particularly when it has been idle for a long time. 

Your fuel needs to be refreshed every month, and the levels should not exceed the maximum limit, as overfilling can result in unfortunate disasters. 

Remember to shut your generator off and allow it to cool down before refueling. 

How Can You Protect Your Generator?

It’s freezing outside, and you have to go to work… What’s your initial step? 

You wrap yourself in warm and fluffy clothing. The same goes for your generator!

To use a generator outdoors during rough weather conditions, you must cover it up with an insulating material to prevent it from frostbite. This protection must be a long-term solution and aid your needs efficiently. 

1. Canopies – A Small Tent

Image of a canopy manufactured by GenTent.
Image source: homedepot.com

A tarp roof-like structure called a canopy is a great method to conceal your generator from the dangers of blankets of ice.

Canopies are perfect for portable devices and smaller generators. You should prefer a steel-reinforced canopy, compared to an aluminum one, as it can withstand heavy winds and extra force relatively better.

This protection tent has its shortcomings too. The design of the covering does not protect your generator from all sides, and the lower parts of the backup energy source are visible to the naked eye.

This exposure is big trouble in case of a snowstorm, which would engulf a generator within hours. The snow can seep into its body and cause complications for its function.

Installation Care

When buying a canopy, you need to make sure you allow the generator to breathe within the covering. 

The roof height must be at least two feet higher than the generators. Furthermore, the tarp of the canopy must not be in immediate contact with the generator’s body. 

It is best to study the installation and assembly before attempting it, as it will become an essential part of your life. 

2. Plastic Sheds – Mini Cupboards For Your Generator

Image of a plastic shed by No Outage.
Image source: nooutage.com

Plastic sheds are ideal for immobile generators, and they are semi-permanent options that enclose the generator from all sides. This shed can withstand the weight of light storms and continuous snow, preventing any entry or leak of liquid.

Furthermore, the shed’s design allows thorough ventilation by making slits and holes. These slits prevent overheating and encourage the release of fumes without letting the water in.

Plastic sheds require professional installation and are perfect for consumers living in areas with light weather conditions. 

3. Steel Enclosures – The Ultimate Vaults

Image of a steel enclosure by indiaMART.
Image source: indiaMART.com

Steel enclosures are considered the best and most robust protectors for your generators. They firmly maintain their structure during heavy storms, hurricanes, and sometimes, even tornadoes. 

These enclosures cover the devices efficiently and prevent any moisture or dust from entering, regardless of the conditions. Moreover, they come in varying shapes and sizes and require help from experts.

Additionally, you can lock up a steel building to prevent theft of your costly machinery. Steel enclosure allows the heat and fumes to escape without threatening a leak or spillage. 

A flip side to this protection is that it does not come in portable sizes and has restricted usage. It is bound to one area, and that’s about it.

The Outline/Your Generator Is Now Safe!

With regular maintenance and a little effort, you will be able to use your generator in extreme weather conditions conveniently. 

You need to ensure you follow the instructions in the manual provided by the retailer and abide by them. They will cover 80% of your problems.

And if that is not enough, invest in protective gear for your generator that will end up lasting for a time longer than the machinery itself. 

The Choice Is Yours…Take Action Now!

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