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Choosing The Right Generator For Residential Or Industrial Purposes
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Power is critical. Mains power supply is usually dependable but there are times when power may fail. In such instances a backup source of power is essential to ensure your appliances keep running. In industrial environments generators are even more indispensable since power loss can mean production loss. In both residential and industrial applications it pays to choose the right generator.
Stationary vs Portable for domestic purpose
For most homeowners who need power backup in emergency situations the choice comes down to portable or stationary systems. One can buy new generators or one can buy used generators, in which case get it from a reliable source that fully reconditions the unit prior to selling it to you and backs it with guarantees. The portable generator is simple to operate and is available in petrol or gas models. It may have a standard generator that outputs single phase 240V AC that can be hooked up to the mains through a suitable control panel with a rating of 1KVA to 3KVA, sufficient for most households. In areas where power failure is a common occurrence, it is better to opt for stationary generators with a higher power capacity and a degree of automation. Automation may be in the form of automatic changeover to standby unit in case of power failure and switch off when power resumes, through a control panel or generator switchgear. One may opt for a petrol or diesel generator with remote switch on/switch off capability.
Should you opt for a lower capacity or a higher capacity unit? A higher capacity generator lets you run a number of appliances but it also consumes more fuel. If power outages last for several hours you may find a higher capacity generator more suited to letting you work unhindered. When you calculate capacity keep in mind that air conditioners and refrigerators have a high starting current of about 30 amps but a lower running current of only 5 amps or so. The generator, if used to power these equipments, must be capable of providing the high starting current required in inductive loads. Another thing to keep in kind is that if you use sensitive electronic equipments then an inverter generator is the one to go for.
In any case, you will find it is better to buy new or reconditioned equipments from electrical control panel specialists who will also take care of installation and maintenance.
While used generators may not give much savings for domestic purposes, when you buy reconditioned ones for industrial purposes, you can save quite a bit of money. Reconditioned and serviced used generators bought from control panel specialists may be the right choice for industries on a budget.
The larger capacity generator usually run on diesel and generates more noise. When you think of buying standby power generating equipments you will appreciate having a specialist who will provide not only guidance in choosing the right KVA rating but also in installing the generator and providing suitable sound dampening panels or housing to reduce decibel levels as well as ATS system.
In manufacturing units with plenty of inductive motor driven equipments, it may be necessary to choose a higher capacity generator than the rated requirement simply due to the high starting current such inductive loads draw. If 100 amps at 415 V three phase is the running current, the generator should be capable of supplying twice the amperes.
Is the generator to be used continuously or only intermittently? This is another factor to consider. Continuous duty generators must have some sort of forced cooling for alternators and the diesel engine. How polluting is the diesel engine?
Control panel also deserves consideration in industrial power back installations. For instance the mains ATS panel is critical in industrial environments where power requirements must be prioritized. In fact, in some industrial installations it is common to see two generators installed with automatic transfer panels provided by experts in generator supply and installation. The ATS seamlessly switches back and forth between utility and backup generators.
One can buy generators, new or used, from agents or from specialists in control panel design and installation. The latter will get you more benefits such as planning guidance, selection advice and installation as also maintenance.
Blades Power Generation is located in the UK and is a control panel specialist providing computer aided design technologies, selection and supply of equipment as well as maintenance and support.
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