Yuma, Arizona (NAPSI) - You can feel more secure that your home can weather any storm if you’ve got a generator to keep the lights and appliances on in an outage. First, however, it helps to understand a few facts about generators.

Common myths include:

Myth: Portable generators and standby generators are the same.

Fact: A gasoline-powered portable generator typically powers a few appliances for a few hours at a time. A home standby generator is permanently installed and can keep the power on when the primary power source goes out, so you can run more appliances continually, such as air conditioners, heaters, refrigerators, clothes washers/dryers and lights. Portable generators can power a wide range of essential items and be used in multiple applications, such as camping or tailgating. Standby generators use your home’s existing fuel source (propane or natural gas) and turn on automatically.

Myth: You have to go outside in a storm to start a standby generator.

Fact: One benefit of standby generators is the seamless transition of power. The generator goes on automatically within seconds after utility power goes out. When power is restored, the standby generator powers off automatically.

Myth: A large, expensive standby generator is necessary to power a house.

Fact: Power management systems, such as those from Briggs & Stratton, electronically control electrical loads. This lets you power more with a smaller generator.

Myth: Standby generators are clunky eyesores that must be placed in the middle of the yard.

Fact: Recent design advancements may give homeowners more placement flexibility. For example, select Briggs & Stratton standby generators meet strict National Fire Protection Association standards, so they may be placed closer to the house than in the past.

Myth: Standby generators require constant care and upkeep.

Fact: Standby generators are programmed to exercise regularly—often once a week—to ensure that they are in working condition in the event of a power outage.

Myth: Portable generators can be operated anywhere on your property, even inside your house or garage.

Fact: Portable generators must always be operated outdoors and far from doors, windows, vents and other openings to prevent carbon monoxide—a poisonous, odorless, colorless, deadly gas—from getting trapped inside the home or garage. Protect your family with a carbon monoxide alarm whenever running a portable generator. To learn more about safe operation of portable generators, visit www.briggsandstratton.com/safetyfirst.