How to Protect TV When Using a Generator

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You might have heard it many times, but electronics are sensitive to power surges. I mean, they are so sensitive that a slight power surge coming from a generator can completely fry them.

This is especially true when it comes to TVs, as they contain sensitive electronic components (like microprocessors, power supplies, memory chips, and other circuitry) that can be easily damaged by voltage spikes or surges.

That’s why I believe it’s smart to go the extra mile and make an effort to make sure that your expensive TV will be hooked up to a generator that won’t harm it.

So, to help you guys, I made sure to build this article where I’ll give you a few different tips on how to safely protect your TV when it’s hooked to a generator during a power outage.

Let’s begin.

Is It Safe to Plug Electronics Into a Generator?

Whether a plugging your expensive electronics into a generator is safe or not will depend on the following factors:

  1. Power Quality
  2. Power Overload Protection
  3. Electronics Sensitivity

Power Quality

Listen, there are two types of power that a generator can put out – clean power and dirty power.

Clean power is like a freshly laundered shirt, it’s pure and pristine, and it’s not gonna mess with your electronics. Dirty power, on the other hand, is like a shirt that’s been worn for a week straight without being washed. It’s filled with gunk and grime.

So, if you’re plugging your TV or any other electronics into a generator that’s putting out dirty power, you might as well just throw those electronics in the trash because they’re done for.

But fear not, my friends, because there are some generators out there that provide cleaner electricity than others.

Inverter generators are a prime example as they use a three-phase process to produce AC power, which is then converted into DC power and back to AC power using a microprocessor. This process ensures a constant, stable stream of electricity that’s free from the voltage fluctuations and harmonic distortion that can be present in traditional generators.

So, in short, if you make sure to plug your sensitive electronics to a generator that provides clean power you have nothing to fear!

Power Overload Protection

There’s nothing more frustrating than plugging your expensive electronics into a generator and having them get completely fried by an unexpected power overload.

Not only that, but if you’re lucky enough for the power overload not to kill your devices, you also have to think about the cost and inconvenience of repairing them. I mean, you could end up having to waste hundreds of dollars to repair them, not to mention the headache of trying to find replacement parts.

That’s where a generator’s power overload protection feature comes in.

A generator’s power overload protection keeps electronics safe from surges and spikes as it works by monitoring the electricity and shutting down the generator if it detects a surge or overload.

So, I’m confident to say that if your generator has this feature, then your electronics will be totally safe as they’ll receive a solid stream of electricity without any electric spikes that can cause so much damage.

Electronics Sensitivity

Some electronics are more sensitive than others, and if you’re not careful when plugging them into a generator, these devices are more prone to being damaged when the power quality outputted by the generator is not the best.

So, what can you do to protect your sensitive electronics when you’re using a generator? Well, for starters, you can avoid plugging them in a generator altogether.

But let’s face it, sometimes you don’t have a choice, especially during a power outage.

That’s when you need to make sure your generator has power overload protection and provides clean power, as we talked about earlier.

That way, you’ll make sure those electronics that cost so much will be totally safe as no power surges will put their lifespan at risk.

How to Protect TV When Using a Generator

To ensure your TV, and other expensive electronics, are safeguarded from potential damage when plugging into a generator, it is important to follow these 5 tips.

By doing so, you can be confident that your generator won’t cause any harm to your TV or other electronics.

  1. Use an Inverter Generator
  2. Use a Surge Protector
  3. Use Automatic Voltage Regulators (AVR)
  4. Use an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)
  5. Use a Power Line Conditioner

Use an Inverter Generator

Inverter generators provide cleaner electricity to protect sensitive electronics

If you’re not careful, plugging your TV directly into a generator can turn out to be a costly mistake.

You see, generators can provide electricity that’s not exactly “clean.” In fact, it can be downright “dirty.” And I’m not talking about mud on the cables, I’m talking about electricity that’s got all sorts of fluctuations and irregularities which could fry your TV.

But fear not, because an inverter generator can the best way to confidently plug your TV in a generator during a power outage.

So, what’s an inverter generator, you ask?

Well, it’s a type of generator that delivers cleaner electricity compared to traditional generators. In fact, the power it produces is so clean that it’s safe to use with sensitive electronics like TVs, laptops, and smartphones.

Now, you might be wondering how inverter generators deliver cleaner electricity, right?

Well… it’s all thanks to their advanced technology, which allows them to generate power in a much more stable and consistent way than traditional generators allowing it to produce electricity that is less likely to damage your electronics, keeping them safe and sound.

Use a Surge Protector

Surge protector helps protects electronics from sudden voltage spikes or surges

I can’t begin to tell you how frustrating it is to plug a TV into a generator during a power outage only to find out that a power surge has totally fried it.

It’s a frustrating and costly accident that no one wants to go through, believe me.

But don’t worry, I’ve got a solution for you: surge protectors.

See, when your generator starts up, it can produce a surge of electricity that can be too much for your TV to handle, causing permanent damage.

A surge protector can help to regulate the flow of electricity and protect your electronics from power spikes which could overload the TV’s internal circuit, which is key to preventing the generator from damaging the TV.

Use Automatic Voltage Regulators (AVR)

You ever plug your fancy TV into a generator only to see it get fried by voltage irregularities? It’s a tragedy, man.

If you have or if you want to prevent this from happening then I’d suggest you getting an automatic voltage regulators (AVRs) for your generator.

Now, you might be wondering, “What the hell is an AVR and how can it save my TV?” Well, let me break it down for you.

An AVR is a nifty little device that automatically adjusts the voltage output from your generator to keep it within safe levels for your electronics. This means that even if the generator is producing uneven or unstable power, the AVR will smooth it out before it reaches your TV.

And the best part? AVRs are relatively cheap compared to the cost of replacing your fried TV. It’s a no-brainer, really.

Use an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)

If you want to make sure your TV doesn’t get fried when using a generator and it shuts down all of the sudden, you need to get yourself an uninterruptible power supply, aka a UPS.

Here’s how it works: when the generator suddenly stops working, it can send a surge of electricity back through the power line, frying any electronics plugged into it, like your TV.

What a UPS does is it provides a buffer between your TV and the generator, so when the power cuts out, it kicks in and keeps your TV running safely until the power comes back on.

I mean, it’s like having a reasonably-priced safety net for your expensive electronics.

Use a Power Line Conditioner

We’re in tough economic times, and the last thing you need is to replace your expensive TV because of some generator-related power issue.

That’s why we’re going to talk about power line conditioners, folks.

Now, you may be asking, “What in the world is a power line conditioner?”. And that’s a fair question, so let me give it a shot at answering it.

A power line conditioner is a device that helps to regulate and stabilize the electrical current that flows from your generator to your TV ensuring that it is getting the proper voltage and frequency, even if your generator is struggling to maintain a consistent output.

Say you’re using a generator to power your TV, and suddenly the generator malfunctions, causing a power surge or a dip in the electrical current. That surge or dip can damage your expensive TV or cause it to shut off.

But, if you have a power line conditioner in place, it can detect these fluctuations and adjust the voltage and frequency accordingly, protecting your TV from damage and keeping it running smoothly.

Safest Generator for Electronics

Champion Power Equipment 200988 Inverter Generator


  • Watts: 4500 starting watts and 3500 running watts
  • Type: Inverter generator
  • Tank: 2.3-gallon tank
Champion Power Equipment 200988 4500-Watt Dual Fuel RV Ready Portable Inverter Generator, Electric Start

It wasn’t hard for me to pick this Champion Power Equipment 200988 inverter generator as the safest option to run your most sensitive electronics like a fancy TV.


Well, for one, this bad boy delivers 4500 starting watts and 3500 running watts meaning it can support more electrical loads simultaneously without overloading or tripping the system, making it perfect for running your expensive TV.

But what sets it apart from other generators is that it delivers clean electricity with less than 3% THD which means that it’s less likely to damage your sensitive electronics when you plug them into the generator.

And get this, it has a 2.3 gallon tank that allows for up to 14 hours of runtime on gasoline and up to 22 hours on propane. Talk about convenience, right?

What’s more, you can use either gasoline or propane to power this generator, which makes it even more versatile.

But that’s not all. This generator is oiled for efficient performance and produces a low noise of only 61 dBA, which is an essential feature if you want to avoid ending up with a bursting headache.


  • It delivers 4500 starting watts and 3500 running watts
  • Delivers clean electricity with less than 3% THD
  • 2.3 gallon tank allows for 14-hour runtime on gasoline and 22-hour runtime on propane
  • It can be run on either gasoline or propane
  • Oiled for efficient performance a low noise (only 61 dBA!)
  • Convenient low oil shutoff sensor and voltage/frequency/operating hours monitor gauges


  • It’s definitely heavy

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, I will answer some of the most common questions about how to protect your TV when using a generator. Let’s get started.

Will a generator damage my TV?

Will a generator damage your TV? The answer is: it depends.

This definetly won’t happen if you’re using an inverter generator as they are designed to produce clean and stable power, making them safe for your electronics.

However, even with an inverter generator, you need to take precautions to prevent power surges from damaging your TV. Make sure to use a surge protector and avoid overloading the generator with too many electronics.

And, if you’re not using an inverter generator, then the chances of it frying your TV are higher as non-inverter generators are known for delivering irregular and “dirty” power.

Will a surge protector protect my TV when using a generator?

The short answer is: yes a surge protector will protect your TV, but you gotta take into consideration that not all surge protectors are created equal.

The best way to make sure a surge protector will keep your TV safe is by selecting one that is specifically designed for use with generators as they have built-in voltage regulators to ensure a steady flow of power to your electronics.

Additionally, make sure to choose a surge protector with a high joule rating, which measures its ability to absorb surges.

Remember, a surge protector is not foolproof. You still need to take other precautions, such as avoiding overloading the generator and using a quality extension cord.

Can a 2000 watt generator run a TV?

Yes a 2000 watt generator will be able to run a TV, but with some caveats.

First, you need to consider the power requirements of your TV. Check your its manual to determine its power requirements so it doesn’t surpass the 2000-watt mark, otherwise you could be putting it at risk.

Secondly, it’s important to avoid overloading your generator. So, if you’re running your TV on a 2000 watt generator, avoid plugging in any additional electronics that will draw more watts, such as an air conditioner.

Finally, make sure to use a high-quality extension cord to connect your TV to the generator as low-quality one could cause voltage drops and fluctuations, potentially damaging your expensive TV.

Hi, I’m John Smith, a proud husband, and father of two little beautiful girls. After a long time of thinking I made up my mind to build a website around my passion.. helping people who need smart advice from handymen with years of experience.

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