Can I Plug My Generator Into a Wall Socket?

No! No, please do not do this. This is a very bad idea and can result in catastrophic results. Do NOT back-feed your generator back into your home. I repeat, do NOT back-feed your generator to your home. Back-feeding your generator is literally plugging your generator directly into your home’s power supply by using a two male ended cord.  These two sided male cords are often called ‘suicide cords.’

This is NOT the proper way to do this. By doing this and not turning off your main breaker you could permanently damage your generator when the power does come back on. There are stories of people’s generators bursting into flames because of this. A flaming generator is not a good thing because, you guessed it, it is holding multiple gallons of gasoline. In one such incident a back-fed generator caught on fire, exploded, and caught the user’s house on fire as well as his neighbor’s home. (Story can be found here.)

Along with the fire hazard of a back-fed generator you are also putting your local electric works at risk by dumping power back into the electric grid while workers are actively repairing. This can result in electrocution injuries and even death to emergency power line workers. If that’s not enough to steer you away from this then you should also know that this act is illegal.

If you plan to permanently connect your portable generator to your home’s electric system then the best and safest option is using a transfer switch or an interlock system. If you wish to purse this avenue then you will most likely need a permit and an inspection from your city or county. Along with that you will need the professional installation from a trained electrician to ensure that everything is setup correctly and safely.

For more safety information on generators please check out our Generator Safety Guide by clicking here.

Thanks for reading,

Alec Johnson


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