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How Does A Generac Generator Work? – A Detailed Guide

December 20, 2022

How does a Generac generator work? Find out everything you need to know about Generators and how to pick the right size for your home.

How Does A Generac Generator Work?

It's crucial to ensure that your home is always prepared for different types of emergencies. One of the most important things to have is a power backup plan for your home or building. Most people use generators for this purpose. Since 1959, the brand Generac has been the leading supplier of generators. But how does a Generac generator work? Here's a detailed explanation from the experts at Osburn Services.

How Does A Generac Generator Work?

Generac generators have an external unit that's comparable in size to traditional HVAC system outdoor units. This component is the one connected to your home or building's electrical system. When power is up, and your home is operating under standard conditions, the Generac generator will be in standby mode. During this time, it stays alert, monitoring your home's electrical system. If there is a power disruption, the generator will pick it up and become active.

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How Does A Generac Generator Work?

The Components

The Generac generator is made up of the engine and the alternator. These two work together to create electricity. An engine can be a bit loud. Fortunately, all this was considered when the Generac generator was made. The engine and alternator sit in a sound-deadening, weatherproof box usually placed on a concrete pad.

The Fuel Source

Generac generators are powered by a fuel source that runs the engine. Once the engine is running, the alternator starts producing alternating current, the same type of electricity your regular power lines produce.

The Automatic Transfer Switch

An automatic transfer switch connects the generator to your home or building's primary breaker panel. The purpose of the automatic transfer switch is to select the home's power source. As soon as there's a disruption of utility power voltage, the ATS is triggered to switch to generator power.

To ensure your home remains safe, the ATS will also automatically isolate your home from the utility lines. This helps to prevent generator overload. Once the utility power is back up, the automatic transfer switch makes the change again.

Exercise Feature

Generac generators also have an exercise feature. This usually happens weekly. The generator will switch on and carry out an exercise at a predetermined time. This is done to warm up the engine and ensure that everything is functioning as it should. Please note that this will not trigger the transfer switch.

How Long Does it Take to Make the Switch?

Another thing you may want to know is how long it takes for the generator to kick in if there's a disruption in power. For safety reasons, the ATS will not switch power instantaneously; instead, it will wait a few seconds to ensure there wasn't a minor twitch in power. A few seconds is all it takes to verify that it's actually an outage. In general, Generac generators kick in fully within a minute or two, and that's more or less the time it takes to find and switch on a torch.

How Long Does a Generac Generator Run?

Generac generators are powered by fuel. If yours runs on propane, it will run as long as there's enough fuel in the tank. A 500-gallon tank can power your entire home for about a week if running around the clock. However, this also depends on the size of your home and how many electrical appliances you have.

How Loud Is the Generac Generator?

There are legal guidelines to stick to regarding how much noise a generator can make. That way, you won't have to worry about the sound affecting your neighbors. When a Generac generator is about 20 feet away, it produces about 66 decibels. To put this into perspective, a central air conditioner produces 68dB, and electric blenders produce about 88dB, making them way louder. As you might imagine, chances are very low that you'll ever have to deal with noise complaints.

Ideal Locations for Installation

You must install your Generac generator as close to your electric meter as possible. Ideally, the generator should be at least 18 inches from your home. However, you should ensure that it's at a safe distance from the windows, doors, and air intake. That way, you won't end up with exhaust gasses in your home. If you live in an HOA, you should also get approval so you don't violate community guidelines.

Can It Power My Whole House?

The short answer is yes. However, this doesn't mean that every generator you buy will power your entire home. You need to figure out the size. The best way to figure out what size you need is to approach a professional installer and have them figure out your home's electricity needs. That way, you can get a unit with the perfect output for your needs.

Do you need a Generac generator for your Oakland County, Michigan home or building? We specialize in the installation, service, repairs, and maintenance of different makes and models of generators, including Generac. Get in touch with us for an estimate and answers to more questions like how does a Generac generator work?

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How Does A Generac Generator Work?

If you’re looking for generator experts in Michigan, contact us. We’ll be happy to work with you to ensure you have reliable power for your home during an outage.

Osburn Services is Here to Answer All Your Questions

Working with a generator installation expert has advantages. Such a professional ensures you choose the right generator for your needs and helps you maintain your purchase to ensure usability for the maximum recommended lifespan. Through engaging a generator installation professional, you enjoy a free generator estimate pre-installation and after-sales service post-installation.

Osburn Services is a leading generator company with extensive experience installing and maintaining generators throughout the lower Michigan Peninsula. Throughout the years, we have consistently combined this experience with quality parts to help create an unbeatable installation and maintenance experience for all our clients. Today, we sit among a handful of authorized Cummins and Generac installers in Michigan, making us an ideal partner for the installation and maintenance of your generator.


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