Do I Need a Special Extension Cord For a Generator

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There will hardly be any exaggeration in it if we say that portable generators come with versatile features with itself.  As it provides required electricity in case of an emergency or power outage and powers your RV on a long road trip. but to tackle those situations a question comes to our mind do we need a special extension cord for our generator

Do I Need a Special Extension Cord For a Generator?

Do I Need a Special Extension Cord For a Generator

Whatever the scenario, you just need to have an extension cord in order to help give power to the appliances you need most.

You also don’t want to plug generators direct into the wall outlets – which is called back feeding. As it is dangerous and offensive in some areas.

Getting details of power generators is important when you are sure that they are right for your need. Before buying you need to be made sure about home generator maintenance before doing the final purchase.

You can even make your own extension cord of 30ampere.

There are a lot of types of extension cords on the market, so you should wonder “do any extension cord will do the same task or I should need a special extension cord for a generator?”

No doubt, it will be more about finding the right extension cord than anything else here. Furthermore, we will find the same below because choosing the best extension cord for your generator must be as simple as the choice of a simple switch.


Can we use Regular/Normal extension cords with a generator?

When people need to plug in a small appliance, they want a quick fix – regular extension cords are usually the answer for this need.

But normally we consider the regular means in terms of the three-prong type – that you can easily find from most of stores. As it is much useful but when we talk about generators, it will not be the best answer. Likewise, you will also wonder about which extension cord will be quite fine for inverter generators. Before buying that as well, you need to first read up on the reviews of the inverter generator and then decide that should you use it for your own home or not.


Following are a few common reasons to avoid traditional extension cords:

  • Location, indoor, outdoor – Although not all the extension cords are made for outdoor activity, you must protect your generator set up from the rain. Suppose you are going to have a portable generator then you must go for an extension cord that is specifically made for outdoors as most likely that extension will at least be partly outside.


  • Compatibility issue – a few of the extension cords are not compatible with generator power outlets, regardless of the length or gauge i.e., the thickness of wires inside.


  • Durability – in order to make use of extension cords outdoors, mostly those sorts of cords are typically more durable compared to others. On the other hand, indoor extension cords are normally not heavy-duty. Furthermore, outdoor extension cords are specifically designed to stick around against wear and tear to sustain for a longer period.

The key points to consider while buying the best Extension cord for your generator:

In order to choose from different types of extension cords for your standby generator, must consider the following key factor—

  • The shape of the Cord.
  • Gauge size and ampere measurement.
  • Length of the extension cord.
1 – Shape of Cord:

Basically, you will easily find a three-prong extension cord in the market as it is normally available. But this is not the only shape you find, as few have four prongs and others are twisted and locked into place.

Just make sure the extension cord you are purchasing plugs in properly and has the correct AWG rating according to your desired length.

2 – Gauge Size and Measurement:

The extension cords in the market have an AVG i.e. American Wire Gauge rating. That determines how many amperes the cord can normally handle, the thicker a cord is, having lower a cord’s AWG and can handle the more amperes.

Before buying a cord, you must match your generator’s ampere value. You may also go for a lower grade as it amplifies the cord’s capacity in order to provide generator power to any of your electrical appliances.

3 – Length of the extension cord:

One thing you should keep in mind, the longer the cord you buy, comes more electrical resistance. Normally extension cords come with a range of 25-250 feet.

Which Cord Should I Need to Plug My Generator into My Home?

Before plugging your generator into your own house, the cord you required depends on which appliances you are going to provide power to.

To avoid electrical damage, you need to add up the wattage of your appliances and then select the extension cord accordingly.

In case of a temporary need for power in your room, a transfer switch or interlock kit will be the best way to go.

An experienced electrician can install that, which will allow you to provide power to hardwired appliances and removes the need for more extension cords.


How Do I run an extension Cord to my home from Generator?

After selecting your required extension cord, the first thing you need to do that place your generator almost 20 feet away from your house’s windows and doors. And also five feet away from any flammable things around it.

Follow the following steps:

  • First, install the outlet utility box closer to where you need to plug in, then drill a hole where the cord fits easily inside.
  • Install a waterproof box to refrain from severe weather damage.
  • Lay out the extension cord in such a way that no one will stick over it and slip through the hole that is plugged in.
  • In the last, Seal all the cracks around your household outlet utility box.


Your peace of mind and power are our pleasure and peace.

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