Generator Safety Information


Carbon Monoxide

Using a generator indoors CAN KILL YOU IN MINUTES. Generator exhaust contains high levels of carbon monoxide (CO), a poisonous gas you cannot see or smell. If you can smell the generator exhaust, you are breathing CO. But even if you cannot smell the exhaust, you could be breathing CO.

  1. Never use a generator inside homes, garages, crawlspaces, or other partly enclosed areas. Deadly levels of carbon monoxide can build up in these areas. Using a fan or opening windows and doors does NOT supply enough fresh air.
  2. ONLY use a generator outdoors and far away from open windows, doors, and vents. Make sure to direct the generator's exhaust away from these openings because they can pull in generator exhaust.
  3. The generator must be at least 20 ft away from your home.
Generator safety2 Generator safety

Even when you use a generator correctly, CO may leak into the home. ALWAYS use a battery-powered or battery-backup CO alarm in the home. If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak after the generator has been running, move to fresh air RIGHT AWAY. See a doctor. You could have carbon monoxide poisoning. For more information regarding the risk of exposure to carbon monoxide, visit the US Consumer Product Safety Commission website at http://www.cpsc.gov/info/co/generators.html.

Fire Hazards

  1. Store the generator in a well-ventilated area with the fuel tank empty. Fuel should not be stored near the generator.
  2. Empty fuel tank, close fuel valve, and restrain the unit from moving before transporting in a vehicle.
  3. Allow engine to cool for five minutes before refueling.
  4. To reduce the risk of fire and burn injury, handle fuel with care. It is highly flammable.
  5. Do not smoke while handling fuel.
  6. Store fuel in a container approved for gasoline.
  7. Do not operate generator near hazardous material.
  8. While operating and storing, keep at least 3 feet of clearance on all sides of this product, including overhead. Allow a minimum of 30 minutes of “cool down” time before storage. Heat created by muffler and exhaust gases can be hot enough to cause serious burns and/or ignite combustible objects.

Electrocution Hazards

  1. Do not connect to a building’s electrical system unless the generator and transfer switch have been properly installed and the electrical output has been verified by a qualified electrician. The connection must isolate the generator power from utility power and must comply with all applicable laws and electrical codes.
  2. Generator is a potential source of electric shock. Do not expose to moisture, rain, or snow. Do not operate with wet hands or feet.
  3. National Electric Code requires generator to be grounded to an approved earth ground. Before using the ground terminal, consult a qualified electrician, electrical inspector, or local agency having jurisdiction for local codes or ordinances that apply to the intended use of the generator.
  4. Do not use generator with electrical cords which are worn, frayed, bare, or otherwise damaged.
  5. Do not operate or store the generator in rain, snow, or wet weather.
  6. Operating the generator in wet conditions could result in electrocution. Keep the unit dry.

  7. For more information regarding the safe use of portable generators, visit the Portable Generator Manufacturer’s Association Website at http://www.pgmaonline.com/default.asp.