Renting a generator is a great idea for an outdoor event or for when your party means caterers, an inflatable bounce house for the kids, or other equipment that won't be supported by your home's standard electrical outlets. If you've never worked with a generator before, you may wonder how they operate and how to keep them safe. Note a few questions to cover with the rental agency when planning a generator rental so you know everything involved and don't overlook any important details.

Ask if you can or should refuel the generator

Some rental agencies don't want their equipment refueled by the user, as this can be dangerous if not downright deadly. Getting fuel on yourself or on the generator can mean the risk of a fire, and the buildup of static electricity can increase this risk.

Typically a generator is full of fuel so that it will operate for the time period rented, or it may be suggested that you rent a larger generator or two generators if you have a long event. Some rental agencies may also prefer that a representative come to your location and refuel the generator if necessary, such as for weekend rentals. If you do need to refuel the generator, be sure you know exactly how to do this, what type of fuel it uses, and how to fill the unit without overfilling it or spilling any fuel and causing a hazard.

Ask what to do if the generator doesn't work or shuts down

If fuel is not the issue, you need to know why a generator may not work or may shut down during use. A rental agency may ask that you call them so they can walk you through certain steps to try to get it running again, or they may bring out a replacement generator. Don't assume you should just put the generator in your car and bring it back to the agency, as they may be able to get it working again by giving you instructions on the phone or may not want the generator to be transported by renters.

Ask if it can be moved

A portable generator with wheels is meant to be moved easily, but generators without wheels may be cumbersome to move and you may risk spilling fuel on yourself if you do move it. Always ask if a generator can be moved before you decide to relocate it; it may be better to pick one spot for the generator before your event begins and not plan on moving it at all, for your own safety.

For more information, contact professionals like Total Generators.