Thursday, September 21, 2017

Standby Generators

Standby generators provide power to your house or place of business in case of power blackout. Beside a generator to generate power , you need a transfer switch to safely disconnect your house from the power grid and connect it to power generated by your generator.
You can have an inexpensive manual transfer switch like this one made by Generlink Electric (place 2 attached pictures here) on your meter base outside the house and plug in your generator to it manualy, no wiring or sub panel needed. Or alternatively you can have this job done by a different type of transfer switch which start to operate automatically by detecting power failure.

What type of generator I should buy?

Type of generator you need greatly depends on application of generator. For example if you are going to use the generator in residential neighborhood and low noise level is important to you, pay attention to number of decibel (db) of noise produced by generator. To better understand the noise level you can use table below which indicates measures of some everyday noises familiar to us.

city traffic…………………………………85db
normal conversation………………….65db
quiet library reading room ………….30db
power Mower……………………………107db

If generator will be working for long time periods at a time, then its a better idea to buy one with liquid cooled engine. You might also want to consider type of fuel that is more available, convenient or economic to run generator on. If your generator is hooked to your house gas pipe, you dont need to worry about running out of fuel or perhaps diesel might be cheaper than propane or gas.
If you are going to use computers and electronics on produced power, its a good idea to buy inverter generator like Honda EU series.
these type of generators produce pure sine waves which is friendly to your electronics.
For residential use in emergency and power blackout occasions , we recommend Honda EU series generators which are quiet, efficient , produce clean sine wave and have a good reputation for lasting a long time.

What size of generator I need?

Basic formula to size your generator is to find out how many lights or what appliances and equipment you need to operate during a blackout , and add up wattage of each to find total wattage needed which equals wattage of the generator . Its as simple as that, but you shuld factor in surge or starting current for applianced and equipment that have motor in them such as washers and furnace and dryer and so on. Motors need current 7 to 8 times that of the running current in first few seconds of start up. If you have more than one appliance that needs surge current, you only need to factor in the highest surge current. The reason is that there is very small chance that appliance needing surge current start up simultaniusely.

Example:

If you need to run 3 lamps of 100 Watts each plus a refrigerator 900 Watts and a Furnace 800 W

Generator wattage=300W (lamps)+900W (fridge) +800W (Furnace)+ 1800W (Highest surge wattage)=3800W