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Common Wattage of Household Appliances

Lights That Go Dim in the Night

Have you ever noticed your living or family room lights dim for just a second or so when your refrigerator, AC or hvac unit or washing machine turns on? The dimming of the lights is caused by the reactive load of the major appliance that was starting up. Have you ever had to push a car? It takes a tremendous force to start it rolling. However, once it is rolling, the effort to keep it rolling is reduced. Electric motors and refrigeration compressors are no different.

The reactive loads can be double the running load! Wattage demand can soar! Unfortunately, you must account for this when sizing a generator. You will find out very quickly that if your power is interrupted, and you depend on a portable generator, the experience will remind you of a backpacking trip. You will have some fun, but for the most part your life will be miserable until the power is restored.

Portable electric generators are very nice. When I lost power for three days in a winter storm, my kids had fun for the first eight hours. You don't realize how much you depend on light bulbs, TV and even the toaster each day. It is also very depressing to go to bed at 7:30 p.m. when the sun goes down. Flashlights are no substitute for a table lamp. Buy as much generator as you can afford. You will never ever regret it!

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