Portable generators give Indiana homeowners peace of mind from frozen pipes, spoiled food

Portable units more cost effective than permanent

INDIANAPOLIS - Thousands of Hoosiers woke up in the dark after strong storms Tuesday morning, highlighting the need for every home to have a reliable backup power source, experts say.

Portable generators, which run on gasoline, are a popular choice, and they are much more cost effective than permanent units.

"Generators can be a great safety measure in case of a power outage," said Angie Hicks with Angie's List. "It can prevent food from spoiling in your home. It can help you do your everyday things, keep pipes from freezing."

Most city dwellers can get by with just a portable generator.

"We can install your transfer switch, emergency panel, for around $500 to $600. Then there would be the cost of the generator, whatever generator you would pick," said Chris Hinesley, an Indianapolis electrician and contractor.

Homeowners who live in the country or those with serious medical concerns might want a more permanent generator solution.

Experts stress that generators should always be kept outside in a well-ventilated area.

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