PacB Group // When You Buy a Generator, It Must Meet Your Needs


When You Buy a Generator, It Must Meet Your Needs

An old adage states that it is an ill wind that blows nobody any good, and this certainly seems to hold true in the case of the nation’s ailing electricity supply network. Holdups in the construction of badly-needed new power stations, coupled with deterioration in the performance of many of the existing installations, and the associated supply infrastructure due to funding shortages, has created a lucrative new market to serve the many South Africans who are now seeking to buy their own generator.

Most of those who live in the northern regions of the country have become quite accustomed to the occasional losses of power caused by damage to overhead cables or a substation, resulting from lightning strikes. However, Eskom’s programme of rolling blackouts, though more predictable, have been the driving force behind the increased quest for a source of emergency electrical power. In turn, this has triggered a response from retailers that has seen, not just hardware stores, but also many of the nation’s supermarkets now carrying suitable units as a standard stock item.

The performance of these units varies, and in general, this variation will tend to be reflected in their purchase price. Many dealers have turned to China and other eastern countries as a source of cheaper units, and while some of these may prove to be good value, this is certainly not true of them all. Consequently, it is important for anyone who may decide to buy a generator, whether it is intended for home or business use, to first evaluate his or her actual needs carefully, and then to look for a product whose specifications are seen to meet them adequately. It is a good idea to allow a small amount of extra capacity, in order to cater for the unexpected.

In the home, the normal requirement will be for sufficient capacity to provide lighting and hot water, to keep freezers and fridges working, and to ensure the TV and set-top box function, as well as to provide power for PCs, cellphone chargers, routers and security systems. In most cases, power for heating or air conditioning, washing machines, clothes dryers and ovens can be dispensed with for the duration of a typical scheduled outage. However, a guest house or a B&B may require a larger unit with the capacity to continue powering these functions as well.

Petrol-driven units will generally be quite adequate for domestic use, although care will be required to contain the noise and to ensure that any reserves of highly inflammable petroleum are stored safely. Commercial users, such as hotels, shops and office blocks will instead need to buy a diesel generator. These units are more powerful, cheaper to run and safer, because diesel fuel only ignites when sufficiently compressed.

Determining which unit will best suit your needs is a matter of simple arithmetic. Each electrical appliance that must be powered has an operating and start-up power rating. Together with total lighting wattage, the latter ratings must be totalled to calculate the overall load. This figure, in turn, must fall within the capacity of the unit purchased. If you are uncertain about how to proceed, an experienced technician will be happy to do the job for you when you buy your generator from PacB Power Solutions.

Our qualified technicians offer support and advice in the selection of the right power solution for your needs by calculating your power requirements.

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