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Barrette's Small Engines Inc. - SmallEngines.ca FAQ's
What is the difference between portable and automatic Home Standby Generator Systems?
The differences really have to do with the steps needed to have emergency power flowing into your house in the event of a power outage. Portable systems are wheeled units that require you to roll the generator outside, start it up, and hook it up to a power inlet box. From there you must go to the transfer switch panel installed near your circuit breakers and switch the power coming into your house from the main line to the generator running outside (this applies to the manual switch only, as the semi-automatic is set up so you only need to turn on and plug in the generator). After the power from your local utility is restored, you are required to reverse the setup process.
One of the clear advantages with an Automatic Home Standby Generator System is that the unit turns itself on and off automatically without you ever having to leave the safety of your home. Our automatic Home Standby Generator Systems also exercise themselves once a week. You can even set the time when the unit will perform this diagnostics check. The generator will then be ready to run whenever needed. See our products for more information about the three options available.