How Does A Transfer Switch Work For A Portable Generator?

The transfer switch prevents the simultaneous flow of electricity between your portable generator and the utility grid. It is installed next to the switch in your home and can be operated manually or automatically.

If the power goes out, you can turn on various devices such as refrigerators, televisions, and lights. However, you must first place the generator in a location no closer than four feet from your home to avoid consuming carbon monoxide. You can buy an automatic transfer switch for portable generator via

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You can connect the portable generator directly to your home wiring by installing a manual transfer switch. This allows a single cable to be used to power some or all of the main household circuits, including boiler fans and well pumps. In comparison, a permanently installed backup generator has a transfer switch that turns off automatically when the main power is off.

It is highly recommended that a licensed electrician install the transfer switch and connect it to the main switch box. While most transfer kits come with great DIY instructions, if you make an unintentional mistake with the cable,  it can cause serious damage to equipment and death for anyone who might be working to restore your power.

A transfer switch contains several circuits and an electrician can assign each circuit to a different load. This ensures efficient usage management and improves the efficiency of portable generators. If utility power is off, simply plug your generator into the transfer switch, turn it on, and move the transfer switch from the utility position to the generator position.