Houston, Texas (NAPSI) - With the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season upon us, it’s important for homeowners to explore their backup power options now.

“The U.S. was spared from a hurricane last year, but that does not mean we will be as fortunate during the 2014 season,” said Rick Knabb, Ph.D., director of NOAA’s NationalHurricaneCenter. “Prepare for a hurricane now before one threatens your area, and find out if you are in a hurricane evacuation zone.”

Homeowners have many options when it comes to backup power:

• A portable generator is the solution most people turn to when they need power in an emergency. Select one that delivers no fewer than 5,000 watts or you won’t be able to back up much. Make sure you have enough extension cords rated for outdoor use. If you already have a portable generator, make sure it runs properly before the power goes out. Also, make sure you have enough gasoline.

• A portable generator with a manual transfer switch lets you safely deliver the generator’s power directly to your home’s electrical system. This eliminates the need for extension cords and lets you power hardwired appliances like a well pump. Your electrician can install this for you.

• An automatic home standby generator is safer and more convenient—it starts automatically, can back up your entire home, and runs on natural gas or LP fuel, so you never need to refuel it in an emergency. It should be installed by a generator dealer or licensed electrician.

To learn which backup power solution is right for you, visit the Generac website at www.generac.com.