During a power outage, it is vital that you have a generator especially if you have a lot of perishable items in your fridge and freezer. With each power outage, there is no guarantee when the power will come back, so you should power only the vital appliances like the freezer, refrigerator, and the heater or the air conditioner.
A 3000 watt generator will run the refrigerator, heater, microwave, television, personal computer, laptop, smartphone, light bulbs, LED lights, coffee maker, dishwasher, washing machine, radio, space heater, water pump, circular saw, electric drill, electric frying pan, air conditioner, electric fence, blender, electric grill, portable fan, hot plate, and your freezer.
If you plan to power your appliances during a power outage then you might find that a 3000 watt generator might not be enough, mostly because of the increased starting power needed for some of the appliances this is why my personal recommendation is to get a 3800 watt power generator which has 4750 watts starting power Click here to check it out on Amazon.com
No matter if you are a prepper or not, you should still own a generator. In today’s world, we are extremely reliant on electricity, and life, as we know it today, wouldn’t be possible without it. Although electricity brings us a lot of benefits, but it is also our biggest weakness. There are a lot of things that could disrupt electricity locally and even nationwide. A long term blackout can not be ruled out, accidents happen, and so do natural disasters or even people who just want to take the entire power grid down.
You might think that once the power is out it will be only a matter of time, usually a couple of hours till you get electricity back. The problem is that you do not have any guarantee of this happening. Generally speaking, most of the time when the power goes down is due to the malfunction of the power grid, depending on how severe the damage is it will take anything from a couple of hours to a couple of days to get the power back.
The main risk of not having a power generator during the summertime when the power goes out is that your air conditioner will not work and the food in your fridge will probably spoil. On the other hand, if the power goes down during wintertime you might find yourself in serious trouble if the power goes down for several days and you do not have a generator. Without electricity, your heater will not work, and it is a fairly high probability that most utilities will also not be available.
Not only your house will slowly start to cool down, but the water in your pipes might even freeze, which will cause extensive damage. Once the water turns into ice, it expands and it will cause fissures in your water pipes. Once the power comes back, you will probably start the heater in order to heat up the house, once you do in matter of a couple of minutes you will hear your pipes making a lot of noise as they will start to violently shake and probably burst due to the ice blocking the pipes, and all this could have been avoided with having a 3500-watt generator.
If you want to know what you should do in a prolonged power outage during the wintertime, then check out my recent article Prepping for a winter power outage ( Everything you need to know ).
Just as a side note, most appliances will need more power when they are starting up, which will increase the load of the generator and this is why some generators will have two power stats, like the max power output and the normal power output. If you are planning to use several appliances and devices to power with the generator than hook them up to the generator one by one, and allow them a couple of minutes to get power before you hook anything else in, especially for bigger appliances like refrigerators and heaters.
A 3000 watt generator will have no problem running a refrigerator, generally speaking, the refrigerator needs only around 100-300 watts of power. Under ideal conditions, the refrigerator will use somewhere between 1-3 kW per hour (kWh). Although a refrigerator doesn’t need as much power to function, but you should still think of the fuel wich the generator uses, the more appliances you power with the generator the faster you will use up fuel. In case the power goes out due to a nuclear attack you might think that your fridge will save your life, for more information check out my recent article Can you survive a nuclear bomb in a fridge? ( Fact or Fiction? ).
Gas or oil-fired heaters will have no problems running with a 3000 watt generator, as most of them need between 1000-3000 watts. Most electric furnaces will not run on a 3000 watt generator as they need around 10000-15000 watts tow work properly, although this also depends on the size of the electric furnace.
Most houses use microwaves, and you can power them easily with a 3000 watt generator, as most microwaves will need only around 500-1500 watts to function properly. Generally speaking, the more watts that a microwave needs the faster it will heat up your food, but if you are planning to get a microwave which you will sometime power with a generator then gett a smaller wattage one.
Most modern tv sets do not require as much power as the ones from 10-15 years ago. Generally speaking, depending on the size of your TV, they usually need anything between 100-500 Watts.
If you have a PC, then you can rest assured that you can still browse the internet even if the power is out, as long as you do still have internet access. Older types of computers will need around 200-300 watts of power, on the other hand, modern PC’s build for gaming or heavy processing need anything between 450-1000 watts. Just keep in mind that the power consumption will go up significantly if the PC is under heavy load like while gaming or while processing a lot of things.
If you have a laptop then in my personal opinion you should power the laptop wit the 3000 watt generator instead of your PC. Laptops are very power efficient and most of them will need anything between 20-100 watts to function properly.
A 3000 watt generator will have no problem powering and charging up to 500 smartphones at once. Most cell phones need between 2-8 watts of power to get charged and if you will keep your phone plugged in the generator then it will only use around 0.5 kWh.
Most lightbulbs will need around 70 watts of power to function at full power, although modern lightbulbs will need a lot less power to make the same amount of light as an older type lightbulb.
The great thing about LED lights is that they make even more light than normal light bulbs but they will use a lot less power, around 15 watts. In addition to this, the LED lights will also you a lot longer.
Most people will start their mornings with a coffee, by using an electric coffee maker, rest assured that a coffee maker will have no problem being powered by a 3000 watt generator as coffee makes generally speaking need at most 1000 watts to function.
Although dishwashers are considered a luxury in some areas of the country, but if you have one you can still power it with a 3000 watt generator as they only require anything between 1000-1500 watts of power to function, even if they dry the dishes with hot air.
In a situation where you do not have power for several days, you will have a lot of dirty clothes which sooner or later you will have to wash. Luckily a washing machine needs anything between 1000-2500 watts of power, generally speaking, the older the washing machine is the more power it will use.
Even if you power up your TV, there is still no guarantee that you will have any channels working due to the power outage. On the other hand, radios will probably have some signal, and if the power outage is larger in scale then the government will probably rely on using radios to communicate and to inform the population. Most radios need around 15-150 watts of power, on the other hand, ham radio will need around 1500 watts to function. If you are wondering what kind of radio is good for emergency situations, then check out my recent article Best ham radio for preppers ( Top 3 ).
Most people who have a generator will also have a space heater, depending on the sie of the space heater, generally speaking, they need anything between 500-2500 watts of power. Larger space heaters that need above 2000 watts of power to function will need a lot more power when they are plugged in and this might be above 3000 watts, so make sure to check how much it starting power is.
If you are lucky enough to have a well on your property or you live near a river or a small creak that you could easily pump that water back into your house. Generally speaking, most water pumps need around 1000 watts to function properly, although there are some high-end water pumps that will need a lot more power to function, so make sure to check the label.
You might want to build something or just chop wood into smaller pieces during the power outage if you have a chain saw than you can power it with a 3000 watt generator as most of them will need anything between 1000-2000 watts to function properly.
Drills that do not have batteries will work with a 3000 watt generator as they only need around 500-900 watts to function properly.
Electric fry pan
Although I personally do not recommend you to use an electric fry pan with a generator as there are plenty of ways to cook without using electricity. But if you want to hook up your electric frying pan to the 3000 watt generator then it should work fine as generally speaking most of them need only around 1500 watts to function.
Air conditioners use a lot of power, but they will run just fine with a 3k watts generator as long as the BTU is not extremely high, generally speaking, air conditioners will use a lot more power when they are started, this power could go up to 2500 watts. Once the air conditioner cooled the room to the appropriate temperature then it will need around 1500 watts of power to maintain that temperature.
If you live on a farm and you have an electric fence then you will have no problem running it with a generator, as most electric fences will need just around 200-300 watts of power to function.
In case you want to make yourself a smoothie during the power outage then you can power it with a 3000 watt generator as they only need around 1000 watts to function at their peak performance.
Electric grills will use a lot of power, generally speaking, most electric grills need anything between 1500-2500 watts to function, the more watts they need the faster they heat up.
If you do not want to hook up your air conditioner to the 3000 watt generator because it uses a lot of power, then your best option will be to use a portable fan, most of these will need anything between 50-250 watts to function.
Hot plates are fairly similar to electric fries and they will also use a lot of power, generally speaking, they need anything between 1500-2500 watts to function, although the starting power needed can go above 3000 watts, but this depends on what kind of hot plate you have.
Freezers do not actually need that much power to work properly, the problem is that the bigger the freezer is the more starting power it needs. While most freezers need between 500-1000 watts to maintain the temperature, but the starting power is around 1500-2500 watts. So if the power goes out and you want to keep your freezer going, then the first thing you should plugin is the freezer, just to avoid the cost of the starting power.
As you can see a 3000 watt generator will be able to run most of your household items, the problem is that if you want to power your entire house with a 3000 watt generator then you will probably fail. Some bigger appliances like the freezer, fridge, and air conditioner need a lot of power in the first couple of minutes after being started. Hooking up several large appliances at once which do need more power at the startup will need a lot more than 3000 watts. So make sure you power the bigger appliances in one by one and let them run for a couple of hours.