When the weather in Philadelphia turns icy, having a reliable source of heat is essential. Power outages, while not exceedingly common, can happen during winter storms, leaving many without heating. One effective solution to ensure continuous operation of your furnace during a power loss is using an EZ Generator Switch. This simple device allows you to connect your furnace to a portable generator, ensuring that you can keep your home warm even when the main power grid is down. Here’s a guide to understanding and installing an EZ Generator Switch for your furnace.

What is an EZ Generator Switch?

An EZ Generator Switch is a manual transfer switch that allows you to safely connect a portable generator to your home’s electrical system to power essential appliances, like your furnace, during an outage. It is installed directly onto the furnace circuit and can switch the power source from the main electrical panel to a generator. The device is known for its simplicity and cost-effectiveness compared to whole-house transfer switches.

Benefits of Using an EZ Generator Switch for Your Furnace

  1. Safety: It provides a safe connection to a generator, preventing back-feeding, which can be dangerous to utility workers and damage your electrical system.

  2. Convenience: The switch is usually easy to operate, requiring a simple flip to change the power source from utility to generator.

  3. Cost-Effective: Compared to installing a full-house generator system, an EZ Generator Switch is an affordable option that focuses on essential needs like heating.

  4. Flexibility: You can use a portable generator of appropriate size, which can also be used for other purposes when not needed for the furnace.

How to Install an EZ Generator Switch

  1. Assess Your Needs: Determine the wattage requirements of your furnace. This information can usually be found on a label on the furnace itself.

  2. Select a Generator: Choose a generator that can meet or exceed the wattage requirements of your furnace. It's important to select a generator with enough capacity to handle the startup load of the furnace, which is typically higher than the running load.

  3. Installation Location: The EZ Generator Switch should be installed near the main electrical panel and furnace. It’s crucial to ensure it is easily accessible for quick switching.

  4. Hire a Professional: While the EZ Generator Switch is marketed as a DIY-friendly product, it’s advisable to hire a licensed electrician to ensure the installation adheres to local electrical codes and safety standards.

  5. Test Your Setup: Once installed, test the setup by simulating a power outage (ensure the main power is safely turned off) and running the furnace on the generator to verify everything works correctly.

Preparing for Power Outages

Besides installing an EZ Generator Switch, it’s wise to prepare for winter power outages by maintaining your furnace and having your generator serviced regularly. Ensure you have enough fuel stored safely for the generator and that all family members know how to operate the necessary equipment safely.

Installing an EZ Generator Switch is a practical and efficient way to ensure that your furnace can keep running during a power outage, providing peace of mind and comfort during Philadelphia’s coldest months.