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Understanding and Preparing for Outages

Using a Generator

If you plan to use a portable generator during power outages, here are important safety precautions:

  • Always follow the manufacturer's instructions when using a generator.
  • Locate your generator in a well-ventilated area. Never run it inside, even in your garage. Gasoline-powered generators produce carbon monoxide and the fumes can be deadly. Store gasoline or other flammable liquids outside of living areas in properly marked approved containers. They should also not be stored in a garage if a fuel-burning appliance is located there.
  • Plug appliances directly into the generator using heavy duty, properly grounded extension cords. Make sure extension cords are not frayed or worn.
  • Use the generator only when necessary, and don't overload it. Turn it off at night while you sleep and when you are away from home, to avoid possible fire hazard.
  • For your safety and the safety of Delmarva Power employees working to restore power, do not connect your generator directly into your home's main fuse box or circuit panel. Improperly connected generators can feed electricity back into the electrical system, endangering field personnel working to restore your power. Consult a qualified electrical contractor if a permanent generator installation is desired.

For more information, see our brochure:

Using Your Generator Safely