Generators And Switches

A backup generator can be deadly if used improperly.

  • Never run a generator indoors – it produces deadly carbon monoxide.
  • Always follow your owner’s guide for proper operation, grounding, etc.
  • It’s okay to plug an appliance directly into the generator. But you should never connect the generator to your home’s wiring (such as at the main panel or through a dryer circuit). Rather, the law requires a generator transfer switch to prevent dangerous backfeed from your generator onto the power lines. Without the transfer switch, you are endangering our linemen and the public.

GenerLink Transfer Switch

Midwest Electric sells the GenerLink, an easy-to-use generator transfer switch that safely separates your generator from our power lines.

No sub-panel or re-wiring required. We install GenerLink at your meter base. Simply plug your generator into GenerLink and you’re ready to safely power your home’s circuits without fear of backfeeding.generlink

GenerLink comes in 30 amp or 40 amp options, which will run about 7,200 watts of load or 9,600 watts, respectively; with additional capacity for the start-up “surge” requirements of motors. This also includes a 20 foot cord and installation. GenerLink typically costs less than what it would cost you to purchase another transfer switch and have it installed by an electrician. Longer cords – 40′, 60′ or 80′ – are also available. And a power surge protection option is available. (NOTE: Your generator must have the appropriate 240 volt outlet in order to work with GenerLink; and GenerLink will not work with generators that have a GFCI.)

Order GenerLink directly from the manufacturer. Once you receive it, contact us and we’ll install it (only on homes served by Midwest Electric). Call Global Power Products at 1-800-886-3837 or 770-736-8232 to order and for current pricing. Be sure to tell them the make, model and kW size of your generator. Or visit www.globalpowerproducts.com

Here is a listing of generators that are compatible with GenerLink, Generators Compatible with GenerLink.pdf.

And here are frequently asked questions about GenerLink, GenerLink Tech Questions.pdf

The GenerLink transfer switch requires a generator that outputs 120/240 Volts and has either the 14-50, L14-30, L14-20, or 4-wire receptacle. The GenerLink is shipped with a 20 foot cord. Longer cords are available upon request.

NOTE: Generators with Full Panel GFCI Protection (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) comply with OSHA inspections on job sites. However, these generators will not function when connected to a GenerLink since the home or building main breaker box also has a neutral bonded to ground. When both the generator and the home / building breaker box contains a neutral bonded to ground, the generator’s GFCI will open and no outlets will function.

* Honda EB Series generator is not compatible with the GenerLink Automatic Transfer Switch. Please contact the nearest Honda dealer for information on modification to the receptacle panel.

NOTE: Per the National Electric Code, all generators must have a “floating neutral ” when used with the GenerLink Automatic Transfer Switch. Please refer to the generator operation manual for bonded neutral specifications.

Call Midwest Electric to learn more about GenerLink, 1-800-962-3830 or emailmberry@midwestrec.com

How to Select & Connect a Generator

Click here for a detailed, easy-to-read brochure on how to properly size, select, install and use a generator, Generator Pamphlet.pdf

Sizing your generator takes into account the total kilowatt (kW) requirements of the electrical equipment to be served. Undersizing can leave you frustrated, while over-sizing is just a waste of money. Pay particular attention to anything with an electric motor. Starting a motor requires three to seven times the current used during normal operation. Allowing for this startup or inrush of current when sizing the generator is crucial.

Electrical connections to the wiring system of the home, farm, or business require a double-throw transfer switch. This switch safely separates the power produced by the generator, from the utility’s lines. Without it, a lethal flow of electricity could reach utility workers down the line, who are restoring power. Installing a double-throw switch is not a do-it-yourself project! Involve an experienced electrical contractor to make sure the installation meets the utility’s requirements, and all local and national codes.

Another safety consideration is where the generator is placed. Unless you vent the generator fumes to the outside, never locate it inside a building, garage or basement. Otherwise, deadly carbon monoxide poisoning could occur.