GenTent Review: All-Weather Cover for Your Portable Generator
What Is A Generator Rain Shelter?
A generator rain shelter is a device used to protect your portable generators from the elements. There are many different types of rain shelters available, but they all have one thing in common – they provide protection against wind and water. These devices come in various sizes and configurations, but most will fit into a standard car trunk or small backpack.
Generator Rain Shelters Are Not Just For Generators!
Many people think that only generators need to be protected from the elements, but they’re not wrong. If you own a boat, ATV, snowmobile or any other type of vehicle with wheels then it’s probably best if you invest in some kind of generator rain shelter. However, there are several reasons why you might want to consider investing in a generator rain shelter for your home.
You don’t want to spend money on expensive generator accessories like batteries, fans, lights and so forth. You just want something that protects your generator from the elements.
If you live in a cold climate where you could freeze to death without proper sheltering, then you may choose to purchase a generator rain shelter for your home instead of buying extra equipment.
If you’re one of those people who just wants to save money any way you can, then you may want to just buy a standard generator rain shelter and opt out of buying extra equipment for it. If saving money is very important to you, you may also choose to store your generator under a roof where it’s safe from the elements.
How Much Do They Cost?
The price of these devices will depend on which type you choose to buy. The most basic ones are usually not much more than a tarp that you can throw over a generator for under $20. On the other end of the spectrum, you have fully functional generators that have their own battery packs, lights and other features that cost well over a thousand dollars. Most people choose to buy the medium-priced models that offer just enough protection for their needs without costing an arm and a leg.
These devices are not the same as the heavy-duty enclosures that you can buy for your permanent generators. Those devices are usually only good for stationary generators and do not offer any portability. If you are going to use a heavy-duty enclosure, then you might as well just buy a permanent generator shelter because you’re going to be unable to move the unit. This is why most people prefer a portable rain shelter.
What Is The Best Generator Rain Shelter?
If you plan on using your portable generator outside for long periods of time, then it’s best if you buy a heavy-duty rain shelter that can protect it from all types of weather conditions. This is especially true if you live in an area where extreme weather is common.
These larger types of generators are usually very expensive and cost well over $1,000. Of course, many people think that these devices are worth the price because they are usually more powerful and can produce more energy than cheaper models. You will also need to run power cables into your home or business in order to power whatever you want.
Most people want these devices to power during severe weather situations and natural disasters like hurricanes, severe thunderstorms, blizzards, earthquakes and so forth.
Where Can I Find A Cheaper Generator Rain Shelter?
There are several places that you can find a cheaper generator rain shelter. You can find the cheaper models at any major home improvement store like Home Depot or Lowes. Some of these units are very large and bulky, so you’re going to need a truck or a van to transport it from place to place.
If you want something more compact, then you may want to check online. There are several websites where you can find cheaper models. Just make sure that it’s the size that you need and will protect your generator from any type of inclement weather.
You may also want to check out some local car dealerships and see if they have any smaller types of portable generators for sale. These units are usually provided to people when their cars are being serviced or repaired at these dealerships. Again, these are usually small so they can be easily transported and don’t take up a lot of space.
As long as you have the ability to charge your portable generator using a power outlet or build your own solar panel, you should be able to use it no matter where you go. It’s just important that you keep these items safe from the elements so they can continue to work when you need them the most.
Why Do Some Companies Offer Cheaper Generators?
These companies sell cheaper generators because they are not the same quality as other more expensive brand names. Many of these generators are produced in far east countries where labor is much cheaper than it is here in the United States.
Not to say that these brands are bad. In fact, most of them will work just fine. They just won’t have the same quality that you get from the more popular brand names like Honda, Yamaha, Champion and so forth.
These cheaper generators do not have the ability to produce a consistent amount of power like the other more expensive generators. In fact, these types of generators are only good for smaller loads such as running a few lights or a small television. They probably aren’t going to be able to handle any major appliances in your home.
It’s important that you don’t overload these types of generators. Just as with any electrical equipment, they have a maximum amount of power that they can produce and maintain. If you try to force more power out of the system than what is designed for, there’s a good chance that your generator will burn out. At the very least it will drastically shorten the life span of your generator.
Where Can I Find These Cheaper Generators?
You can find these cheaper generators at your local home improvement store or even in the toy section at department stores. You may want to ask the sales person where these items are located if you have trouble finding them. Sometimes they are not located in the same area as the other generators.
How Much Do These Cheaper Generators Typically Cost?
These smaller generators typically cost under $100.00. They are made of cheaper materials so the company can sell them at a lower price without losing too much money. These are not heavy duty machines and should only be used for recreational purposes or very, very light jobs.
These types of generators are not recommended if you plan on using them for any type of emergency power where the outcome of failure would cause significant harm to life or property. These generators typically aren’t powerful enough to produce enough energy to power your home in the event of a power outage. They can be used for smaller items such as powering a few lights or a small television, but that’s about it.
You’re better off spending a little more money and getting a more reliable machine that will produce a constant source of electricity when you need it. The last thing you want is a generator that stops working when you need it the most.
Before you go and buy one of these cheaper generators, read the product reviews to determine if other people had success with the machine or if it stopped working after only a few times that it was used.
Also, just because the store where you bought the generator sells fuel for it, doesn’t mean that the fuel they sell is of good quality. You still want to read the labels on the fuel cans to see if it’s a reputable brand or not. This is especially true with containers that are sitting on the shelf for an extended amount of time. The gasoline can go bad in as little as six months, so you don’t want to end up using bad fuel in your generator and it not working at all.
It’s best to stick with generators that have a trusted name and a reputation for quality.
Recommended Cheap Generator Websites
Sometimes you just need a cheap, quick fix. If you’re looking specifically for a generator that costs under $300.00, consider the following websites:
These online stores sell generators for under $300.00 and offer expedited shipping.
Cheap Off-Brand Generators
If you don’t care about name recognition and just want to save money where you can, then you can always buy cheaper, off-brand generators. These are typically made in Asia and are distributed by companies that you’ve never heard of.
Off-brand generators are everywhere. You can find them at most home improvement stores, discount retailers and online.
While some people swear by purchasing these types of generators, others will tell you to stay away from them at all costs. The quality and performance of these types of generators can be very hit or miss.
The problem is you have no way of knowing which ones are going to work and which ones will break down after a few uses. A majority of these cheap generators are sold without any warranty at all.
You have to be very careful when purchasing these types of generators. Here are a couple things you should look for when buying an off-brand generator:
Look for a reputable brand name or check to see where it’s manufactured. Some of the cheaper, off-brand generators that are manufactured in China have a bad reputation for breaking down and being low quality.
How old is it?
If it’s older than two years, there’s a good chance that the company doesn’t make that model anymore and parts will become hard (if not impossible) to find. Check to see if the company still exists.
What types of fuel does it use?
Some of these cheaper generators are designed to only run on a certain type of fuel. If you need to use a more expensive brand of fuel, you may end up spending more money than you intended.
How much power does it put out?
Depending on what you plan on using it for, you may need a less powerful or more powerful model. Some of these models are also more durable than others.
How loud is it?
You don’t want to buy one of these generators and have it be louder than a lawn mower. Check the decibel level before you buy.
Some people swear by buying cheap, off-brand generators. If you’re looking to save money and don’t mind tinkering with them from time to time, then by all means save yourself some money.
Just keep in mind that these cheap generators may need to be repaired or replaced more often than name brand generators.
I’ve had a lot of people tell me that they have had great luck with certain off-brand generators. Others have told me horror stories about cheap generators that barely ran for any length of time at all.
It’s a gamble either way you look at it. If you do decide to go this route, make sure you can return it if it doesn’t work out for you.
Most people think that gasoline is a thing of the past, but that’s not entirely true. It is still used in many developing countries where electricity and fuel oil is hard to come by.
Gasoline generators are useful when you need a lot of power instantly. They are very loud and should only be used in outdoor areas since they emit fumes.
You can by them at most home improvement stores or rent them from some tool rental places. If you’re going to buy one, try to get a more powerful one. These can also be extremely expensive to purchase.
Once you purchase one of these, you will need to get gasoline to run it. You may already have a gasoline container around the house that you can use. Otherwise, you can buy one at the store or gas station.
The nice thing about these generators is that you can refuel them easily. The downside is they are very expensive to operate and repair. They are also very heavy and can only be used outside.
Like anything else, if you take care of it, it will last a long time and serve your needs. If you don’t, it will break down on you constantly and be more of a pain than anything else.
What Size Generator Will I Need?
It all depends on what you’re going to use it for. Try to get one that is more powerful than what you need.
Sources & references used in this article: