Whisper Quiet Diesel Generators
There has been a growing demand for whisper quiet generator products that make little or (relatively) no noise. The motor sound of electric generators has always been an inconvenience that was largely overlooked on emergency and home backup units because when you need these units, the noise they make generally becomes a low priority issue. There is a need for larger power units that are also whisper quiet so that these units can be used in environments where the additional noise of a traditional generator motor would not be tolerated. Such applications or customers include movie production companies, outdoor concerts and events, and jobsite applications within a suburban or urban environment that has stringent noise restrictions. These units can be of various physical sizes and rated outputs, from a small unit used aboard an RV, to a cart-sized unit, all the way up to very large trailer-mounted units with very large power outputs.
In order to address these requirements several manufacturers have created specialty generator models that feature extensive noise shielding via an enclosure or cart, and superior muffler systems for the engine exhaust. Many of these same advances in "quiet technology" have found their way into the designs of standard home backup generators thereby improving these units acceptability greatly. If you have need for these units you will need to do some additional research to find the unit in the correct output with the desired noise rating. Pay careful attention to the rated decibel output levels advertised on different models, the rating should tell the distance (away from the noise source) at which the reading was taken. These distances can be quite different for units that appear to have a similar noise rating!
Diesel standby generators remain the number-one choice for emergency power systems worldwide. Diesel produces much more power, costs less to operate, is safer to store because it is not as volatile as gasoline. The longer life and lower operating costs is what makes diesel engines so popular in trucks, trains, farm equipment, and every other heavy piece of machinery. Today diesel generators produce virtually no visible smoke and less harmful emissions then gasoline. You can even make your own fuel from used vegetable oil.
Diesel fuel is a light-grade oil. Inside any engine there are many moving parts that create friction. Gasoline and propane are solvent-based fuels which promote friction and wear. Diesel being a lubricant reduces friction and wear. Today’s diesel engines last the longest, run a lot quieter and cleaner then ever before. We push diesel home generators because it also results in a much higher customer satisfaction rate.
Portable generators provide power in remote locations, such as construction sites, for short periods of time. In a pinch, they can also power essential equipment during a power outage. Portable generators tend to be smaller and less expensive than standby generators. They have built-in fuel tanks, which allow them to run anywhere, and standard power outlets that can plug into ordinary extension cords. Portable generators should never be run indoors as they can produce fumes that can cause serious health problems or death if used indoors. Portable generators are also not weather proof and must be kept dry.
Standby generators offer anywhere from 7 kW to several hundred kW of power. They help offset the harmful effects of power outages. Installed permanently as an emergency power source for your home, cottage or business, standby generators are hardwired to your home or building electrical system and often get fuel from built in larger fuel tanks able to run for longer periods of time. Safety features can prevent injuries as well as damage to your generator.
Quality standby generators will shut down if they lose oil pressure, overheat, or are being worked too hard. Standby generators also have solid steel or aluminum enclosures, good mufflers to reduce noise, and be compliant with all relevant emissions regulations. Standby generators should be started up once a week and run for 15 minutes to “exercise” them – making sure they are ready when needed. Unlike portable generators, standby generators are weather proof and can be left outdoors.
To connect a generator to your existing electrical system, you’ll need a separate device called an transfer switch. The transfer switch is an essential a safety system that prevents your generator from feeding electricity back to the neighborhood power grid. When the power goes out, the generator can be started up, and after a few seconds to let it stabilize, the transfer switch can be turned onto connect the generator to your home. When power comes on again you can turn the switch off and disconnect the generator and return your setup to normal. Some larger diesel generators come with an automatic transfer switch that will sense a power failure, turn on the generator and switch itself on and off automatically. Installing a transfer switch may require local permits and always requires a professional electrician.
Consider installing a dedicated electrical sub-panel: In addition to the generator and transfer switch, you may want to invest in a dedicated electrical sub-panel, as well. Only your essential equipment is connected to the sub-panel, which is connected to the generator. That way, when power fails, your critical devices will get the emergency power without the risk of overworking your generator or having to turn off or unplug other equipment. There are also devices available on the market now that will let you plug in directly to the hydro meter outside your home.
Large commercial big box stores may be able to offer generators as a side business as is some Liquidators however they can not service what they sell, carry no spare parts and do not have the expertise as a company dedicated to nothing but generators.