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Last Updated on October 19, 2021
If you are currently in the market for a new generator, you may have noticed your lack of options. There is a generator shortage occurring this year due to many factors, including an increase in extreme weather, current world events, as well as supply chain and production issues. Many manufactures of generators are struggling to keep up with an increase in demand that does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
In this article, we go into further detail about the generator shortage and what it means for you. We’ll also point you to where you can buy your generator today.
How did extreme weather events contribute to the shortage of generators?
Earlier this year, you may remember a disastrous winter storm in Texas that left millions without electricity for extended periods and called the rest of the country to action.
This winter storm was one of several extreme weather events in the recent past that revealed just how underprepared many pockets of the country are when faced with a prolonged power outage.
As a result, many people and businesses began purchasing generators to have on hand for additional and backup power supply when needed.
This surge in demand was unexpected and has manufacturers still racing to keep up, but supply has not yet met demand.
How does the current world events affect the supply of generators?
According to Aaron Jagdfeld, CEO of Generac, the generator manufacturer has been experiencing high demand for its product since the beginning of the pandemic.
This has thrown the world into a panic and has caused many people to prepare for this catastrophe and future catastrophic events by stocking up on essentials, ranging from toilet paper to generators.
Is there anything else affecting the supply of generators right now?
As with the supply of any product right now, the global supply chain issue is causing a strain. Luckily many of the generators on the market are produced in the United States, making shipping delays a virtual non-concern.
However, should you be looking overseas for a generator, you may face a long wait.
When will the shortage of generators be over?
Generator manufacturers such as Generac and Briggs have been dealing with the overwhelming demand for generators for quite some time now and have been taking extreme measures to increase supply.
In fact, both major producers have announced the opening of additional facilities to increase output. However, customers might not see more generators on the market until 2022.
See Also: Explore our recommended generators that are still in stock in May, 2023
If I can find one, what type of generator should I buy?
When purchasing a generator, you generally have two options: a whole-home generator or a portable generator.
The most reliable and convenient are whole-home generators, while portable generators are still better than nothing. Whole-home generators are true to their name – they can power an entire house during an outage, and they can provide that power for weeks.
On the contrary, a portable generator cannot power an entire house, and it can only provide that power for a fraction of the time a whole-home generator can.
Where can I purchase a generator right now?
Although you might not be able to find a whole-home generator right now, you may still be able to purchase a portable generator, which can provide up to 12 hours of power when you need it most.
To find a portable generator, check your local major retailers like Walmart or your big online retailers like Amazon. You might also have luck on social media marketplaces.
Here is one of our favorite generators that is still in stock.
What are the dos and don’ts when using a generator?
When using a generator, there is one cardinal rule: never place the generator in your home or near a window. According to the CDC, the generator should be at a minimum, 20 feet away from your home when in use. Besides that, there are several generator safety tips to keep in mind before operating your generator.
What should I do to prepare for a power outage if I can’t find a generator?
If you have not been able to locate or purchase a generator in advance of the upcoming winter season, there are still several things you can do to prepare for a power outage:
- Keep a stock of perishable foods in the freezer at all times. If the power were to go out, the food in your freezer would stay good for longer, and thus you would have more to eat while you wait.
- Store extra water in your home or garage. When the power supply is cut off, you will not want to rely on your water supply to be working properly. Always keep an extra pack or two of water on hand so that drinking water is the least of your worries.
- Do not forget the small but mighty essentials. If you do not already have it on hand, go out and purchase flashlights, batteries, candles, matches, and first aid supplies. You will not want to be caught in a power outage without these essentials in your home. Also, make sure to have plenty of warm clothes and spare blankets lying around. If you have a wood-burning fireplace, it is a good idea to store extra firewood in your garage or shed.
- Have a backup plan. Have a plan for what you and your family will do should your home no longer be livable during a power outage. Do you have family or friends nearby with a backup power supply? Can you check into a hotel? Simply determine what your plan B will be in such an event.
Are there other options to having a backup power supply besides purchasing a generator?
If you can’t find a generator on the market, and you still want to ensure that you have a backup power supply during a major outage, you may consider installing solar panels on your home.
Solar power panels capture the energy from the sun and store this energy on a large battery that can be used to power your home at a later time, such as during a winter storm.