How Much Does It Cost to Install Generator Transfer Switch?

A transfer switch is an electronic device that acts as a transfer portal of power between two sources. It’s designed to allow your generator to provide power to specific circuits and prevent the generator from back-feeding the power line.How Much Does It Cost to Install Generator Transfer Switch

Additionally, with a transfer switch, you get to eliminate the need for running the extension cords. It’s the safes way to power your home and stay up to code of generator installation.

It all depends on your generator applications. If you decide to install a transfer switch, hire a reputable and licensed electrician, and he will get it for you. However, that applies for the permanent standby generators, with a portable generator, you do not need a permit.

How Much Does It Cost to Install Generator Transfer Switch? (Answer)

The cost of installing a generator transfer switch is affected by various aspects and factors. They dictate how much you will use and how long the process will take. The pricing will depend on how much you spend buying the kit and how much you will pay for the labor.

1) Labor

Typically, it’ll take an electrician around 3-4 hours to have a transfer switch installed. The current pricing is between $200 and $600 in labor, depending on the electrician you hired. Additionally, the electrician charges might change with installation difficulty depending on the transfer switch type, manual, or automatic.

2) Purchase costs

The buying costs will be affected by different models available, brand, transfer switch type, and capacity, among others. I will discuss each giving you some quotations so that you can prepare your budget correctly.

a) Transfer switch wattage

Transfer switches are available in various capacities to match the generator sizes. The size helps you determine the ideal switch to buy for your specific generator. For instance, if your generator provides 7500 watts of power, then you need a transfer switch that supports over 8000 watts.

If you have a portable generator with less than 5000 watts, then you need a 6-circuit switch. It costs around $250 to $300.

If you have a generator with over 5000 watts and under 1Kw, then you need a 10-circuit switch, costing between $350 and $450. Above that, be prepared $450 and over.

b) Items in the kit

Most reputable manufacturers offer their transfer switches with complete accessory set needed for installation. That eliminates the need to buy additional parts, saving you some bucks. That’s why I always suggest you check on the product description before purchase.

c) Transfer Switch Type

Transfer switches are of two main types: manual and automatic. The prices of the two also vary hugely. A manual transfer switch is cheaper and easy to install compared to the automatic transfer switch.

If you have a portable generator that you’re hooking up to your home, a manual transfer switch is a reasonable, cost-effective model.

However, if you have a permanent standby generator that powers your huge home, get an automatic transfer switch. It’s hand-free and automatically flips when there is a power blackout.


A transfer switch is a legally accepted way of preventing back feeding that can lead to injuries or even death. It’s also an acceptable replacement for interlock. For a small home or a portable generator, I would recommend you pick a cheaper option, the manual transfer switch. Also, for the best installation, hire a reputable, certified electrician for the job. That will help you avoid issues with authorities and your home insurance company.

Related Info:

About the author

Sharif Miah

I am Sharif, 22, a student, currently doing the BBA program. Besides, I am an online Blogger.


  • would you recommend using an unplugged electric meter to connect a portable generator to my house in an emergency by using NESC specified parts?

    • Yes! So long as you have a Transfer Switch ready for the connecting, using an unplugged electric meter with NESC specified parts is the safest way to connect your portable generator during an emergency. Keep in mind that a portable generator might not be powerful enough to run your whole house. So, have your electrician connect essential appliances depending on your generator size.

  • Can I use a disconnected electric meter box with NESC specified equipment to power my house in emergencies?

    • It depends on the reason for the disconnection. If the power company disconnected your meter box, well, do not attempt to use it. Yes, it might be the bills or a faulty connection. Whichever it’s, don’t try! However, if you disconnected it to use another source of power like solar or something, you can use it for with a generator during an emergency.

  • can i use a 3000 watts power converter for emergency power outages for only lights, refrigerator and tv.

    • Yes, of course, so long as the combined wattage of the three does not exceed 3000 watts. Frankly speaking, you can comfortably power a few lights, a refrigerator, a coffee machine, and a microwave. At the same time, you can charge your smartphone and laptop. But you have to check the individual wattage rating of your appliances before connecting. The best way is to keep the power load of approximately 2400-2500 Watts.

  • Reliance Controls Pro/Tran 2 – 20-Amp (120/240V 6-Circuit) Outdoor Transfer Switch w/ Wattmeters & Inlet. Electrician says I need 4 wire GFI AFCI transfer switch. Does the above fit that description…thanks

    • Yes, the model is perfect. However, if you use this transfer switch connected to branch circuits that have AFCI or GFCI breakers, the AFCI or GFCI protection gets lost when the toggle switch is on generator position. That’s why you need to get an AFCI or GFCI protection when running on generator power by installing ideal breakers in your transfer switch. The electrician will advise you more on this.

  • I just received estimate to connect 2 circuits (100 amp and 200 amp) through transfer switch to panel from a 22kw Generac. I was surprised at $3185. This does include $650 permit and 200 amp panel conversion at $450 since original panel is damn old. Does $675 for 100 amp dedicated circuit and another $925 for 200 amp circuit sound right? Thanks, Joe

    • Not really! You can get a 100-amp dedicated circuit at Amazon at around $50 and $200 while a 200-amp circuit at around $100 and $350. The $450 for the conversion kits is also somehow high; you can get the same, and probably of higher quality at anything between $70 and $300. The permit cost is right. So, taking the maximum, the total is $850, considering you’re using a single 200-amp and one 100-amp dedicated circuit.

  • What is the best Transfer Switch that I can use on a Westinghouse – WGen6000 7,500/6,000-Watt Gas Powered Portable Generator?

    • The best is the Westinghouse ST Switch, but it’s unavailable. The company hasn’t said anything about the availability, but there is another model you can use for the same reliable hook-up, the Reliance Controls Corporation 31406CRK pro. It comes as a Transfer Switch Kit with everything you need for the setup in it. It’s faster and easier to install in your home. This thing is designed for use with portable generators of up to 7500-watts, and your two generators are within this range. And you know what, everything is carefully put together and well labeled for a more tranquil and quick connection.

Leave a Comment