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How to Select a Generator to suit your power Load &

How to Test a Generator for Off-Grid Load requirements

Select a GENERATOR and Follow the Test procedures or use the below Calculator to estimate the watts required when using equipment.

Commonly, a Generator will need to start if you invested in Battery storage as;

  1. Usually late at night or early in the morning, & Only when low battery voltage triggers the AGS function.
  2. Obviously after extended Bad weather, where there was inefficient Solar Harvesting.

NB: A 1kw~3.5kW Inverter Generators (best suited to Camping), are very fuel efficient, and if you happen to be harvesting & Compressing your own BioGas (Methane) from your own Residential BioGas Digester , you could run a 1kW generator for free, and produce up-to 3.5kW Energy per bag/day from the 3.4m3 Bio-Gas Digester.

For the Climate conscious: A Bio-Digester is a perfect addition to a Home. Our Residential Bio-Digester sit on flat Ground, Kits are very simple to Assemble.  These digester’s harvest gasses that are normally Vented into the Atmosphere & Not captured, like in your Compost heap, Rural Waste products from Crops, Fruit, Piggery, Chicken Farms etc. and all other forms of Organic Waste disposal, like fish & Meat buried in commercial rotary compost sites. These Residential Digester’s do this naturally with the flick of a Switch, as you feed all your organic waste into the Digester Sink or Optional 20litre Stainless Steel Blender, then you slowly get FREE BioGas & Liquid fertiliser as a bye product, that is safe for use in Vegetable gardens or normal run-off onto the ground, said to turn Sand into a Garden bed with natural Hydroponic seepage irrigation.

Generator Power Management TEST: Follow these Safe Test procedures;

To prolong the life of your generator and attached devices, follow these steps when testing a generator load rating;

  1. Start the generator with no electrical load attached. Allow the engine to run for several minutes to stabilise.
    • QUICK TEST: a) Disconnect Site any Mains input fuses. b) Connect site to the Generator. c) If the engine stabilises, the current draw is not exceeding the GenSet kW rating, if the Engine struggles to run smoothly, use the Test procedures below!
  2. First Plug in and turn on the largest load item. If the engine speed reduces, allow the engine to stabilise.
  3. Then Plug in and turn on the next item.  If there is little change in the engine speed after 10 seconds, plug in the next item.
  4. Repeat steps 2 & 3 for each additional item. NB: When engine speed is momentary reduced, the engine is under strain to produce the power demand, if the engine does NOT stabilise quickly, it infers the Load is in excess of generators ability.
  5. Never exceed the generator capacity when adding a load, when Generator is overloaded it will run rough and possibly stop the engine.
  6. OVERLOADING: Can lead to permanently damage the Alternator or Equipment.
  7. Commonly a 3.7kW Generator (GenSet) is all that Residential homes operate on.

NB: The Start-up power required by electric motors such as drills, refrigerators, air conditioners and power saws etc. need an extra boost of watts at start up, this can be substantially higher than the operating figure printed on the compliance plate, and depends on the type of motor.

Calculate what KW size Generator you need to match your Power Load/Consumption ?

 Home Appliances (Running/Starting) Watts; 

Watts   Hours

Entertainment (Running/Starting) Watts;   

Watts   Hours

Microwave 750W/1250W

CD/DVD player 10W

 

Electric stove – one element is 1500W

 

Games console 100W

 

Electric Fry-pan/Skillet 1250W

 

Stereo receiver 100W

 

Coffee maker 1500W

 

Television 40" 80W~500W

 

Washing machine 1200W

 

PC with 28" monitor 150W~650W

 Essentials (Running/Starting) Watts;

Watts   Hours     

Job Sites (Running/Starting) Watts;

Watts   Hours     
 

Light bulb 60~110W  /  Cree LED 8/25W Each. (monrning & night) 

 

Belt sander 75mm 750W~1500W

 

Refrigerator-n-Freezer 500W/1500W

 

Bench grinder 150mm, 750W~3500W

 

Small freezer 500W/1000W

 

Angle grinder 800W 1500W

 

Sump pump 600W/1800W

 

Compressor 1 ½ HP 1700W~2500W

 

Well pump 1HP 2000W/4000W

 

Edge trimmer/Router 500W~1100W

 

Electric water heater 1500W/3000W

 

Hand drill 12mm 1000W~1000W

 

CF/gas water heater 50W/120W

 

Electric lawn mower 1200W~1800W

 

Security system 25W/100W

 

Paint sprayer 600W~1200W

 

AM/FM radio 10W~30W

 

Table saw 1500W~2000W

 

Garage door opener 1/2HP 500W+ 

 

Heat Gun 1500W~2000W

 

Charger Electric Vehicle 48V/DC Battery, with 1kWh~30kWh

       

 Heating/Cooling (Running/Starting) Watts;   

Watts   Hours           
 

Reverse-cycle Air-Conditioner 900W/3500W.  

       
 

Fan home/industrial extraction 50W/100W

       
 

Air Heater element / Fan 1/3 HP 150W/1'000W

       
               
(Running/Starting) Generator Load Requirement:  Watts.   
(Approx.) Daily Energy Consumption:  Watts.   

Set the Hour cells to calculate Your Daily kWh of Energy, this should match your Power Bill figures or approx. Energy consumption ! 

 

Above figures You enter should relate to the Maximum energy/power needed to operate all the equipment if use at the same time.

The Power requirements will vary between appliances depending on make & model, these figures are usually stamped on the appliance label

NB: Once an appliance has started, commonly it will use less energy as the initial Load once the appliance has stabilised, this is the main reason of Start testing using the highest Load alliance, like an Oven etc. ...As Above !

Converting Voltage and Amperage to Watts Volts (240) x Amps = Watts;

Example: 1'250 Watt 3.5amp Microwave requires840W to run (eg. 3.5x240=840W), so, a 1kw generator.

With a 3.5kW generator, 15A load x 240V =3'600W, if you exceeds Generator rating, it may only deliver this rating for a short time. If 240V x 13.3A = 3'200W is the continuous rating of this Generator !

STILL NOT SURE WHAT SIZE GENERATOR ?

Then please feel free to email us, tell me what you want to power up and I'll gladly give you a recommendation on which model to chose.

However, commonly MOST households are Single phase, 15A max. draw, and limited to 15 (Amp) x 240 (Volt) =3'600W (3.60kW).

So, basically using a generator smaller than 3.5kW may be suitable, for System Stability & Efficiency, it is better to first sending the energy (power) from the Generator directly into a Hybrid Inverter, and then draw the energy from the Inverter's 240V Output circuit.

The good thing with wiring the GenSet into the Inverter AC input circuit, then the Inverters Automatic Generator Start (AGS) circuit, can be programmed to start the Generator if the stored battery energy goes the voltage you set !

So, why buy or convert a Petrol engine to Run on Bio-Gas or LPG instead of petrol ?

Well many reasons, not the least of which is safety.

  • Bio-Gas and LPG generators have virtually zero carbon monoxide emissions (9 ppm CO2 as opposed to 568 ppm CO2 with petrol).
  • Petrol generators should only be operated when more than 25 metres away from humans, pets or open door/windows. Whilst we don't suggest you run an LPG generator in your kitchen, it is many more times less toxic than petrol fumes, and can be used closer to the house.
  • Carbon Monoxide is odourless, colourless, tasteless and invisible. A silent killer.
  • No stale fuel problems. Unlike petrol (especially unleaded) sitting in a carburettor or fuel tank that solidifies over time if unused, BioGas/LPG generators completely exhaust all fuel from the system before they shut down. Additionally, Bio-Gas/LPG can't "spoil" if unused and can remain in its manufactured state indefinitely. That mean when you need it in an emergency, it's ready to go.
  • Petrol generators can run on BioGas.  Where LPG and Natural Gas (NG) can be hard plumbed at home or commercial gas supply line.
  • No messy jerry cans. All our generators run off a 9 kg Swap 'n' Go gas bottle, the exact same bottle you currently have connected to your patio BBQ. So when there's a power outage, and the local servo can't pump petrol, just pick up a gas bottle and power up!
  • Ever refilled a generator or a lawn mower when it's run out of fuel midway through a task? Volatile, highly flammable fuel being poured into a small hole in the fuel tank, with a good portion of that fuel splashing onto a red hot engine or exhaust system. A potential disaster waiting to happen but with LPG, just swap over the bottle, it's that simple.
  • LPG costs are roughly half those of a petrol generator, particularly when you also take into account servicing costs and longevity of the engine.
  • Greenpower BioGas, CG or LPG generators also have a triple lock safety system – Lock-1 closes the LPG gas supply, Lock-2 closes the engine switch cutting off the gas supply and Lock-3 automatically vacuum cuts off the gas supply inside the air-fuel mixer when the engine stops running.

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