BUYING A GENERATOR

Diesel Silent Generator open diesel generator Perkins generator closed diesel generator d diesel generator c diesel generator b diesel generator a Perkins generator closed
A generator is an expensive investment, and also expensive to maintain and to operate. Here is some advice you can use to ensure that you get the right generator for your needs. Do not just GOOGLE “generators” and then click on the first name you see and buy a generator. Go to more than one supplier and have them come to you and advice you on your options. By getting input from various sources you can ensure that your getting good advice. Some generator salesmen are sharks, by listening to other people you will quickly discover who is trying to fleece you and who is being genuine. If you have items like a UPS or air conditioning go to their suppliers and hear what they have to say about the sizing of the generator you need, They are the experts in their fields and know more about their products than the generator salesman. YOU ARE GOING TO BE SPENDING A LOT OF MONEY SO TAKE A BIT OF TIME AND EFFORT AND SPEND IT WISELY. Sizing your generator is critical, to small and you will damage it and may even damage equipment connected to it. Too big and you are wasting money. Ideally a generator should run at between 70 and 80% of capacity, though this is not always achievable especially when you have motors, refrigeration, air conditioners or geysers connected to your generator.

So how do you select the right generator?

STEP ONE: Why do you want the generator?

DO you want it because you do not like the inconvenience of being with out power, or because loss of power will cost you money? If it is for the sake of inconvenience of power failures, then you need to ask yourself, what is it that you can not live with out. If it is because being without power could cost you money, then you need to determine what items are essential to ensure that you do not loose money and what items will have little to no effect on your income. In your home look at things like your geyser, the number one power user in the house. Most power outages are about 2 to 4 hours, so how essential is this really? So what if the water is only luke warm when you shower, see it as a way of making sure everyone in the house takes really quick showers, this way you also contributing to saving water. How about your stove or oven? Do you really need it, after all you can always eat out or have a braai. Your pool pump, your air conditioner, your under floor heating, look at all these items and determine how essential they really are, even your fridge and freezer, these items can go for a few hours without power and still protect your food. At your place of work the same things apply as at your home, geysers, fridges air conditioners etc, these all need to be looked at. Do you really need all those lights? What about the workshop, here is a great place to save, take inventory of your equipment especially items with motors, if possible have the motor configuration changed to lower your start up current, by fitting soft starters etc. What machines run all day and which only run now and then, is it possible to implement a system whereby only certain machines run at the same time. All these can contribute largely to lowering the size generator you need, thus saving you money whilst still meeting your objectives.

STEP TWO: Getting the right information from the right people.

Now that you have an idea of what you will be running off the generator, the next step is to bring in the professionals. If you have UPS systems or air conditioning, do not rely on a generator salesman to help determine the size generator you need, this could land up wasting money. Generator specialists are just that GENERATOR specialists, they do not know everything about UPS and air-conditioning systems and will just use the rule of thumb when it comes to sizing, and the rule of thumb is very outdated. If you have a 40Kva UPS the rule of thumb says you need a 80Kva generator. How ever these days with all the upgrades within the UPS industry you could actually only need 50Kva generator for the same UPS. Many factors determine the size of generator needed, including phases of the UPS, does it have inline filters or not, its harmonics levels etc. Same applies to your air conditioners. so do the right thing for your wallet and speak to those who know what they are talking about. Do not use the same company to advise you on these products to supply the generator. Once these people have given you their input and advice the next step is to contact your electrician. GO through the house/ business with him and your list of what you want and do not want connected to the generator. If you not going to run everything off the generator then he will need to separate your DB into two parts, essential and non essential. The essential items will be fed by both your mains and the generator whilst the non essential item will only have mains feeding them. Let him quote you per item that you added to the generator, Let him calculate exactly how much power each item needs including those items you do not need, because it could some times to be cheaper to just connect some of the things you did not originally want connected. Their effect on the size of the generator could be less than the costs to change the wiring to exclude them, this is especially true when it comes to items running from plugs and lights. If your main supply is single phase and your current needs are more than 40amps talk to your electrician about splitting your board in to three , so that you can you use a three phase generator. If they say it can not be done then contact us we will advice him on how to do it legally and safely. NEVER MAKE THE MISTAKE OF HAVING THE GENERATOR SUPPLIER HANDLE THIS PART FOR YOU. THEY WILL USE PEOPLE THAT THEY AGREEMENTS WITH AND THIS COULD LEAD TO YOU BEING FOOLED INTO SPENDING MORE MONEY THAN YOU REALLY NEED.

STEP 3: CHOOSING YOUR GENERATOR

Now you are ready for the generator supplier to help you make the final choice. With the help of the generator specialist, you need to determine the factors that effect the generator itself. The first step is using the information you have accumulated to decide on the size of generator you need. This is very important as the bigger the generator the more room it needs, the more air it needs and the more fuel you will have to carry to it. You need to decide where to place the generator, you can not slap it down anywhere. You need to take into consideration things like, distance from the boundary, need for plinths and bundwalls, air flow, how the cables will be run, if you want the ATS (automatic transfer switch) on the generator or separated from it. Do you want the set to be automated or manually run. Access to the generator for servicing and repairs. How you will refuel the set. Depending on the size of generator you could need to apply for a fire certificate, have fire proof walls, need a civil engineer to sign off on some of the work. Do you want an open set or will it need to be sound proofed. It may sound like a lot of work but considering the money you are about to spend it will be well worth it. Done correctly you could save your self thousands in your initial investment and even more over the years in running costs.

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CONTACT US

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E-MAIL:  rkat@kaltron.co.za
  TEL: +27 83 231 9156
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E-MAIL:  jnisbet@kaltron.co.za  
 TEL: +27 81 530 3335
A generator is an expensive investment, and also expensive to maintain and to operate. Here is some advice you can use to ensure that you get the right generator for your needs. Do not just GOOGLE “generators” and then click on the first name you see and buy a generator. Go to more than one supplier and have them come to you and advice you on your options. By getting input from various sources you can ensure that your getting good advice. Some generator salesmen are sharks, by listening to other people you will quickly discover who is trying to fleece you and who is being genuine. If you have items like a UPS or air conditioning go to these suppliers and hear what they have to say about the sizing of the generator you need, They are the experts in their fields and know more about their products than the generator salesman. YOU ARE GOING TO BE SPENDING A LOT OF MONEY SO TAKE A BIT OF TIME AND EFFORT AND SPEND IT WISELY. Sizing your generator is critical, to small and you will damage it and may even damage equipment connected to it. Too big and you are wasting money. Ideally a generator should run at between 70 and 80% of its capacity, though this is not always achievable especially when you have motors, refrigeration, air conditioners or geysers connected to your generator.

So how do you select

the right generator?

STEP ONE: Why do you want the

generator?

DO you want it because you do not like the inconvenience of being with out power, or because loss of power will cost you money? If it is for the sake of inconvenience of power failures, then you need to ask yourself, what is it that you can not live with out. If it is because being without power could cost you money, then you need to determine what items are essential for you to not loose money and what items will have little to no effect on your income. In your home look at things like your geyser, the number one power user in the house. Most power outages are about 2 to 4 hours, so how essential is this really? So what if the water is only luke warm when you shower, see it as a way of making sure everyone in the house takes really quick showers, this way you also contributing to saving water. How about your stove or oven? Do you really need it, after all you can always eat out or have a braai. Your pool pump, your air conditioner, your under floor heating, look at all these items and determine how essential they really are, even your fridge and freezer, these items can go for a few hours without power and still protect your food. At your place of work the same things apply as at your home, geysers, fridges, air conditioners etc, these all need to be looked at. Do you really need all those lights? What about the workshop, here is a great place to save, take inventory of your equipment especially items with motors, if possible have the motor configuration changed to lower your start up current, by fitting soft starters etc. What machines run all day and which only run now and then, is it possible to implement a system whereby only certain machines run at the same time. All these can contribute largely to lowering the size generator you need, thus saving you money whilst still meeting your objectives.

STEP TWO: Getting the right

information from the right people.

Now that you have an idea of what you will be running off the generator, the next step is to bring in the professionals. If you have UPS systems or air conditioning, do not rely on a generator salesman to help determine the size generator you need, this could land up wasting money. Generator specialists are just that GENERATOR specialists, they do not know everything about UPS and air-conditioning systems and will just use the rule of thumb when it comes to sizing, and the rule of thumb is very outdated. If you have a 40Kva UPS the rule of thumb says you need a 80Kva generator. How ever these days with all the upgrades within the UPS industry you could actually only need 50Kva generator for the same UPS. Many factors determine the size of generator needed, including phases of the UPS, does it have inline filters or not, its harmonics levels etc. Same applies to your air conditioners. so do the right thing for your wallet and speak to those who know what they are talking about. Do not use the same company to advise you on these products to supply the generator. Once these people have given you their input and advice the next step is to contact your electrician. GO through the house/ business with him and your list of what you want and do not want connected to the generator. If you are not going to run everything off the generator then he will need to separate your DB into two parts, essential and non essential. The essential items will be fed by both the mains and the generator whilst the non essential item will only have mains feeding them. Let him quote you per item that you add to the generator, Let him calculate exactly how much power each item needs including those items you do not need, because it could some times to be cheaper to just connect some of the things you did not originally want connected. Their effect on the size of the generator could be less than the costs to change the wiring to exclude them, this is especially true when it comes to items running from plugs and lights. NEVER MAKE THE MISTAKE OF HAVING THE GENERATOR SUPPLIER HANDLE THIS PART FOR YOU. THEY WILL USE PEOPLE THAT THEY HAVE AGREEMENTS WITH AND THIS COULD LEAD TO YOU BEING FOOLED INTO SPENDING MORE MONEY THAN YOU REALLY NEED.

STEP 3: CHOOSING YOUR GENERATOR

Now you are ready for the generator supplier to help you make the final choice. With the help of the generator specialist, you need to determine the factors that effect the generator itself. The first step is using the information you have accumulated to decide on the size of generator you need. This is very important as the bigger the generator the more room it needs, the more air it needs and the more fuel you will have to carry to it. You need to decide where to place the generator, you can not slap it down anywhere. You need to take into consideration things like, distance from the boundary, need for plinths and bundwalls, air flow, how the cables will be run, if you want the ATS (automatic transfer switch) on the generator or separated from it. Do you want the set to be automated or manually run. Access to the generator for servicing and repairs. How you will refuel the set. Depending on the size of generator you could need to apply for a fire certificate, have fire proof walls, need a civil engineer to sign off on some of the work. Do you want an open set or will it need to be sound proofed. It may sound like a lot of work but considering the money you are about to spend it will be well worth it. Done correctly you could save your self thousands in your initial investment and even more over the years in running costs.

BUYING A GENERATOR