Written by Walt Meyer

Key Considerations for Installing a Standby Generator – Part 2

Part 2 will cover the other types of fuel, Electrical & Plumbing Connections,  Permits & Regulations, and Installation Location.


The most common fuel for portable generators, gasoline, is a bad option for home standby generators. It is highly volatile, so gasoline is difficult to store safely near your house. Gas also deteriorates in storage as time passes, rendering it useless within two years.   

Natural Gas

Natural disasters rarely impact natural gas supplies. In addition, this fuel burns cleanly. Many homes already have natural gas pipelines for their kitchens and heating, making it an easy fuel choice for a new standby generator.

Propane (LP)  

Easy to store and safe, propane is a clean-burning fuel. Homeowners can install home storage tanks ranging from 100 to 1,000 gallons in size. Thus, having enough fuel for a power outage should not be a problem.

Experts rank natural gas first, propane second, and diesel third for home standby generators.

Electrical & Plumbing Connections

A standby generator’s ATS (automatic transfer switch) detects a utility power outage and then activates the unit within seconds. As determined by your installation, an ATS may transfer control to a breaker panel, which transmits electricity to selected circuits.  

Homeowners that power their standby generator with natural gas or propane must connect their gas line or propane tank to the unit. They will also need to ensure proper valves are installed to handle the kind of fuel powering the generator.   

Permits & Regulations 

As determined by their location, a homeowner might be required to secure a permit to install their standby generator. There also may be HOA restrictions regarding installing a unit that needs to be followed.

Installation Location

Every standby generator has specific manufacturer guidelines regarding its installation site. A unit must be a certain distance away from home, ensuring exhaust is safely channeled far enough away from a home’s doors and windows. 

Electrical Services You Can Trust

Meyer Electrical Services is an authorized Generac and KOHLER Sales & Service Dealer. We provide custom standby generator installations and are trained and licensed to perform the regularly required important factory service and maintenance.

Founded in 1991 and serving Maryland, Virginia, and D.C., where we are licensed and insured, Meyer Electrical Services provides home and commercial electrical services you can trust, including:

  • Standby Generator Installation
  • Panel Upgrades (Heavy-Ups)
  • Electrical Vehicle Charging Stations
  • Structured Cabling
  • Circuit Breaker Replacement

Based in Bethesda, our team proudly serves all of Montgomery County. Receive a free consultation for custom electrical work today by calling (301) 941-1400.