Briggs and Stratton Home Generators – The Briggs and Stratton 40396

 Briggs And Stratton Home Generators Are Tops

And, The Ultimate Home Standby Generator Is…

The Briggs and Stratton 40396 20000-Watt System

This lifesaving generator offers total and complete protection.  Gone will be the nerve-racking apprehension about power outages!  Power the entire house – washer, dryer, electric stove, AC units, furnace, fans, lights, computers, TVs – everything that needs to be kept up and running.  That’s what Briggs and Stratton home generators do!

The 40396 can run on liquid propane (LG) from an exterior tank or, natural gas (NG) that is already piped into the home.

This extraordinary generator will be standing by to provide up to 20kW of power using LG or 18kW using NG within seconds – not minutes – after losing main power.

Briggs and Stratton 40396 Vanguard engine

Employing an immensely powerful Vanguard 993cc, V-Twin, 4-Cycle, overhead valve (OHV) engine, this home standby generator anticipates the loss of main power and kicks on automatically.  And, when the main power is working again, the generator knows it – and returns to standby mode.  The “picture perfect” change from main power to generator power is seamless – and almost unnoticeable.  The reverse is just as imperceptible.

Front-side air ventilation directs engine exhaust away from the house to keep carbon monoxide fumes from entering through any open windows or doors.  This allows the generator to be placed just 18 inches from the home’s exterior walls – so, there are many more options as to where the generator can be located.

Housed in a rust resistant galvannealed steel* enclosure – with a stainless steel base – the Briggs and Stratton 40396 includes a dual 200 amp (2 x 200 amp) automatic transfer switch using a patented Symphony II Power Management to automatically balance the requirements of all the home’s electrical loads – especially high wattage items like the AC – and electric stoves and dryers.  The transfer switch is rated for outdoor use as well as indoors.  Utilizing two 200 amp transfer switches – instead of one 400 amp transfer switch –  takes up less space and is less costly.

Since the Symphony II Power Management transfer switch is wired into the home’s existing wiring, it can readily monitor all electrical circuits.  The Symphony II proprietary technology makes it easier and more economical to power the whole house because it allows use of a smaller generator – which lowers costs for the generator, the installation – and the operation of the generator because, less fuel is needed.

*Galvannealed steel is formed by galvanizing and then annealing sheet steel.  During the galvanization process, the steel is coated with a protective layer of zinc.  Then, the steel is heat treated and cooled slowly – annealed – making it flexible enough to easily form into the shape desired – in this case, the generator enclosure.  The resulting color is usually a uniform matte grey.  The manufacturer, Briggs and Stratton, makes use of the same materials and coatings that the automotive industry employs – to give years of protection for the generator housing.


A Host Of Improvements Over Previous Generator Models…

There are a lot of innovations in the 40396 – some hidden – some not – that show the thoughtfulness, care, and foresight that went into this generator’s design:

Briggs and Stratton 40396 improvements

  • Sloped roof – The easy-open top is sloped to allow effortless water runoff.
  • Battery charger – Both the battery charger and fuel selector are accessible through the simple-to-remove front panel.
  • Low noise level – This is successfully accomplished by using special fiberglass sheeting to muffle noise and vibration.
  • Automatic gas shut-off valve
  • Low pressure regulator
  • Thermally protected fuel system
  • Wireless monitor communication
  • Control panel – Operation is straightforward and uncomplicated.
  • Vanguard engine – Specially developed to withstand extreme outdoor environments.
  • Low fuel consumption rate – 260 cubic feet per hour at 100% load on natural gas (NG) – and, 3.75 gallons per hour at 100% load on liquid propane (LP). Most of the time, operating conditions average a 75% load.
  • Consistent and pure sine wave power – Making it truly safe to hookup sensitive electronics like computers, laptops, TVs, etc., without needing an additional uninterrupted power supply (UPS) or line conditioner.

To top it all off, Briggs and Stratton offers a 5 year limited warranty for their standby generators which covers parts, labor, and travel.  A great deal!


Installation Costs

It’s easier said than done to guesstimate the installation costs for any standby generator – as costs can vary wildly from dealer to dealer across the country.  But, choose an “official” Briggs and Stratton service center and the work will be done to exact specifications.  Most likely, the cost to set up the generator will be somewhere between $1,500 and $4,500.  That’s a huge range – but, shop around – and check references – before contracting a certified electrician to set up the generator.


Homeowners That Love The Briggs and Stratton 40396!

Briggs and Stratton 40396 homeowner comments

“The dual 200 amp transfer switch is astounding and it fits right in with the two 200 amp distribution boxes in my house.  Several neighbors have looked over my generator set up and they are all highly interested in getting one too!”

“We run our whole 4,000 square foot house with a refrigerator, two freezers, 2 heat pumps, electric water heater, electric dryer, and electric stove.  And, we still have power left for  the small things like lights, computers, TVs, and such.”

“During Hurricane Matthew, I lost main power for 4 days but the generator took over and kept me going the whole time.  I estimate that I used a little over 2 gallons of LP per hour.  I highly recommend this unit!”

“We have a lot of power outages in my area.  It happens at least 6 to 8 times a year.  But, with my Briggs and Stratton generator, it is only out for no more than 10 seconds.

“Recently we had a bad storm which caused a power failure.  We were up and running in less than 10 seconds with the whole house running.  It was strange to look out the window and see every other home around us sitting in the dark while we just went about our normal business.”


The Bottom Line

If power outages occur frequently – if you have a family to keep safe, warm, and fed – then, seriously, take a much closer look at the Briggs & Stratton 40396 20000-Watt Home Standby Generator.  This is a very economical generator.  Look at it this way – there is no price that can be put on the peace of mind you’ll have – knowing, “YOU’RE COVERED!

For more good stuff about portable power, glance at Generator Reviews.  There are also a number of other great generators listed  on the page – that are worth taking into account.

Comments and emails welcomed and appreciated.  I love challenging questions, power outage and generator stories, or whatever you deem appropriate to talk about here, in The Perfect Vegetable Garden.


Jim, the Lifelong Gardener

6 thoughts on “Briggs and Stratton Home Generators – The Briggs and Stratton 40396

  1. Rebecca Reply

    Great review!  We don’t currently have a generator for our house, but it’s such a good idea for back up power.  I remember a few times the power going out here for over 24 hours.  My biggest concern: freezer melt!  Of course, they were both summer time, which was luck because I wouldn’t want to be without power when it’s below freezing out!   (And we have two kids to keep warm and fed.)   If and when we do get a generator, this looks like a good option.

    • Jim Reply

      Hi Rebecca,

      The Briggs and Stratton 40396 is the ultimate for home standby generators.  But, before you make your final choices, head on over to Generator Reviews for some good, basic generator knowledge and some other excellent generator options like the Generac 7043.


  2. Salim Reply

    Good day,

    I must confess that I am really impressed by the features of this generator set. The fact that it is a standby gen caught my fancy and I love the less-noise feature. Thanks for this great review, this post was really helpful by giving enough information about the product. Thanks

    Have a nice day.

    • Jim Reply

      Hi Salim,

      This is definitely a very impressive standby generator – that’s for sure!

      You’ll find some more super options on the Generator Reviews page, too.  Take a look.  You won’t be disappointed!


  3. Renton Reply

    This is a great post! I have actually been looking for a backup generator for a while. The Briggs and Stratton 40396 sounds great! It sounds to me like it will work without a UPS for my computers. You are right about the features showing careful thought and planning.

    I think this is a good investment especially for me since we have frequent power outages.  It would be nice to be able to at least power down or unplug the sensitive electronics normally rather than having them suddenly shut down. I think that this is actually a really good deal for a great piece of very valuable technology.

    Thanks for sharing this!

    • Jim Reply

      Hi Renton,

      It’s true that the Briggs and Stratton 40396 produces electricity that is smooth enough to power sensitive electronics – but, personally, I feel much safer continuing to use my UPS as a buffer for my computers, laptops, and TVs.

      That being said – this is actually the best most inclusive home standby generator on the market today!


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