Knowing you need a generator is just the first step. Next, you have to find out what type. From diesel to solar hybrid, trailer-mounted to super silent, there’s no shortage of generator options. It can be hard to know which model is best equipped to power your outdoor wedding, music festival, film production, street market, construction project, temporary facility or anything else that needs a dependable source of power.
There are advantages to hiring a generator rather than buying one, depending on your needs. For starters, hiring a generator is a much more flexible and cost-effective option. But there’s a lot to think about. Before you hire a generator, there’s the matter of how to calculate a generator’s kVA and the amount of power you need. Just as importantly, how much does it cost to hire a generator, and will you make enough from your event to cover the fee?
Total Generators can cater to your power needs, whatever they may be. But in the interests of making sure you purchase only what’s useful to you, here’s our short guide to what you should know when you hire a generator and how to hire the right one.
Things to Consider Before Hiring a Generator
There are a number of things you need to consider before you hire a generator, from how much it costs to hire a generator to how to calculate a generator’s kVA. Thinking about the following factors will help you determine what kind of generator best meets your needs.
The power requirements
Determine how much power the generator will require in watts or kilowatts. Make a list of all the appliances that will run off the generator and the wattage of each one. It’s better to hire a generator with more capacity than you require rather than less. Overloading a generator can lead to overheating and can even turn it into a fire and explosion hazard.
The equipment you intend to run
The tools, machinery and equipment you need power to run will help determine what kind of generator you require. Are you running household appliances, heavy machinery or an outdoor concert’s worth of amps and speakers? How much gear are you planning to run all at the same time?
The fuel it will run on
While most generators run on diesel (especially larger generators), other common fuel types include natural gas, propane, gasoline and solar.
Do you need the generator for the whole day, over multiple days or just for a few hours? This will help determine the size of the fuel tank on the generator, along with how much fuel you need.
When you hire a generator, you want one that’s as quiet as possible. The last thing you need is an incessant hum in the background of an intimate event like a wedding. You also need to consider the noise regulations of the area you’re in and avoid legal trouble.
Consider how much you can afford to spend when you hire a generator. This will help you decide which type you should hire and how long you should book it for. How much does it cost to hire a generator? At Total Generators, the cost is variable but reasonable and depends on your requirements. Your best option is to get a quote.
The voltage you need
How much power do you require? Whether you need single-phase power (240V/50Hz), three-phase power (240V or 415V/50Hz) or something else entirely, the level of power in a generator is a deciding factor.
Are you specifically looking for a generator with an optional auto-start? How about a super-silenced enclosure or a 24-hour fuel tank? Deciding on the features you can’t go without makes it easier to decide which generator you should borrow. One of the most important considerations is the kVA required.
Calculating the Right kVA You Need
A generator’s kVA (Kilovolt-Amperes) rating refers to how much power the generator produces. A kVA is 1000 volt-amps, and it’s the result of multiplying the voltage by the electrical current. The difference between kVA and kilowatts (kW) is that while kW represents the “true” power of a generator, kVA is a combination of real power and reactive power (power that’s only needed when operating certain equipment).
It’s important to calculate the generator kVA you need. Too small, and you won’t get the power you require and risk damaging your equipment. Too large and you spend more than you have to.
Start with a list of every piece of equipment or machinery you’ll be using the generator to power. You can use various methods of calculation. You can find the total number of amps used by your facility by using a clamp-on ammeter. You can review your power bill, find the highest peak demand and add 25% on top of that for reserve capacity. You can also, instead, provide the total electrical load in watts or kilowatts to Total Generators, and we can advise you of the right kVA. Adding up the total electrical requirements of each system will bring you to a figure you can work with. You can also provide the starting wattage, as this can be higher than the total wattage if your gear uses more power when you activate it.
Once Total Generators has determined the level of power you need, we’ll be able to give you a more precise figure of how much it costs to hire a generator.
What Size Generator for the Area
Whether you’re hiring a generator to power your home or holding a major event, sizing matters. A diesel generator that’s too large can glaze from underloading, and one that’s too small can overload and wear out quickly. Understanding your electrical needs gives you a clearer picture of the size of the generator you need.
On top of electrical requirements, another important consideration of hiring a generator is how much space you have to work with. Obviously, the generator has to go somewhere, but whether you only have a small enclosed area or a vast outdoor expanse, there are other factors to think about. Will there be proper ventilation and airflow? Will the generator be easy to access? Do you have enough space to obey the manufacturer’s clearance requirements?
If you need expert advice, Total Generators will help you make the right choice when you go to hire a generator.
Generator Hire at Total Generators
Total Generators takes pride in providing excellent-quality, easy-to-use generators Australia-wide. If you’re looking for an efficient generator built for simplicity, we can provide the ideal model for you, including the right kVA rating.
With offices in Brisbane, Cloncurry, Moranbah and the Northern Territory, we provide a comprehensive range of generators that includes diesel generators, super silent generators, trailer-mounted generators and power station hire.
Favoured by the construction and mining industries as well as festivals and events, our diesel generators come packing all levels of power.
Our hybrid solar generators are able to produce a steady stream of renewable energy wherever in the country you may be.
With more than 25 years of experience, Total Generators doesn’t provide one-size-fits-all solutions. Instead, our goal is always to match you to the generator best suited to your requirements.
Our ability to rise to a challenge, whatever it is, and cater to unique conditions has made us the generator company of choice for many remote mining camps, utility providers, film productions and commercial activities.
Ready to hire a generator but still need some help figuring out where to start? Contact Total Generators for expert advice on your power supply needs.