Because generators tend to be quite robust pieces of equipment, they are hardly quiet when in operation. This sound can become quite deafening, especially if you are using a portable, fuel-powered model. Holding a conversation can become near impossible, which can be problematic if you are trying to work and you need to communicate with nearby workers.
The good news is that it is possible to reduce the noise created by your generator; we have compiled some tips here:
- Try placing your generator away from your house or workplace, as this is the easiest way to lessen the noise. You will need to make sure that the power cord is long enough. Just keep in mind that this may disturb neighbouring homes and businesses, so it may not be an option.
- Purchase a padded cushion that has been made out of cushioning wrap and poly foam (you should be able to find a roll or single pad for a decent price). Place the generator on top of the cushion; this can help to reduce the noise caused by vibrations and shaking.
- Connect your generator’s exhaust pipe to an 18 to 20 litre tank that has been filled with water. This will help to muffle the noise, just like an aquarium’s air radiator. Even the water inside the tank will immediately become dirty, it should last a few days before completely evaporating.
- Ensure that the generator is level, as machines that are not level tend to make loud vibrating sounds. Most portable models have levelling feet on the bottom – you can unscrew these feet in order to stabilise the machine to whatever level you require.
- Insulate the area around the generator. The edges can be insulated using sound absorbing foam (which will drown or muffle noise) or you can cover the machine with a flame retardant cloth (which are designed to not catch fire as a result of the extreme heat from the engine).
It is important to note that a portable generator that runs below 75dB is actually deemed quiet. Most models will actually be over this number, so if you are able to pick up a machine with this decibel level, you are actually doing quite well. If you need the machine to be quieter, try out some of the above tips to see what works best for you. You may even require a combination of tips.