Generators are a great source of power in your darkest times. Literally! But harsh weather conditions can hamper that, especially rain! So, are generators waterproof? What to do in these times? Should you keep it off? What if you need it, particularly during rain?
Unfortunately, generators are not waterproof. It can cause severe damage to yourself and permanent damage to your machine. Sometimes, it can also cause power surges and explosions. But proper enclosures like tents and canopies can help you use them in the rain as well.
I would still advise you to read the article till the end. I will explain in detail the apparatuses and techniques I’ve mentioned. So, keep your eyes and brain focused! Let’s dive deep into how you can use generators in harsh conditions!
What happens if your generator gets wet?
Before we delve deeper, you need to know what happens if your generator gets drenched. Generators are machines with separate power outlets ranging from 100-200 W. They run on diesel or fuel and provide electricity to your house, RV, etc.
These days, portable generators are widely used. If water seeps into the outlets of these generators, then there will be a catastrophe. You know that water and electricity together are a big no-no. So, you can guess what’ll happen. Huge power surges or explosions might occur. Your generator might get severely damaged.
Also, you might get electrocuted if you go to check your generator while it is wet. And I don’t need to explain what thousands of volts feel like! So, you see now, the picture is quite grim. Hence, if you buy a generator, keep your miser instinct in check.
Ways you can use your generator in harsh conditions
As previously mentioned, generators are not waterproof so you’ll need to come up with another solution if you want to use your generator in harsh conditions.
Tornadoes, high winds, and massive rain can cost you. And by cost, I mean huge repair costs for your generator! So, spend a good amount of money now so that you don’t have to spend double later. You can find different types of available coverings in shops and online markets. Here are some of them, which are quite popular and efficient.
Use a temporary generator covering
These coverings are great because they are easy to set up. These coverings protect you from harsh wind, cold, and other conditions that might hamper your generator. The covering is also perfectly made so that ventilation is not obstructed.
The attachments, coverings, and material from which it is made ensure that the generator doesn’t overheat. Also, the exhausts and power outlets are not blocked. The best part about this is that you can deconstruct and reassemble them whenever you like. RVers, you guys will definitely like this one!
It might not give the best protection, but it sure is handy. The covers from GenTent are really good! So, get yourself a temporary cover! Especially if you love traveling.
Use generator canopies
Now this one is proper protection for your generators. These are massive coverings to help protect everything! The surrounding area, all the components, your exhaust, you name it! It protects your generator from dust and other harmful particles.
Snowstorms, hurricanes, and strong winds can greatly affect your generator. But these canopies can withstand these extreme conditions from 65 to 70 mph. The canopies are properly reinforced with attachments. They are also made in a way that doesn’t hinder ventilation.
It also maintains a cool atmosphere for the proper functioning of the generator. These canopies can cost anywhere between $65 and $350.It will depend on the size and material. Moreover, you can deconstruct and reconstruct them anywhere. And these coverings are for all types of generators (portable, normal, and industrial-sized generators).
Use steel coverings
Steel coverings are strong and rigid enclosures for your generators. These are quite expensive to buy and install. But hey, if you’ve got cash, why not spend it on something good? These can range from a few hundred to thousands of dollars. The technician’s cost can be about 200-400 dollars. But you will get a reinforced and well-ventilated enclosure.
Sometimes you’ll have to use cement to attach the enclosure properly. And that’s the real downside of this cover. It lacks portability. So, use it for those generators that you will not move. Generators, like the ones you use permanently for your residence.
Make one yourself
Another great option is to DIY an enclosure yourself. You can use simple materials like wood to create the covering. They might not be as strong as those steel ones, but they are pretty decent! Before you start, you will need some additional materials, like:
- Metallic sheets
- Measuring scale and pencil
- Screws of .5 or .25 inches
- Saw wood
- Some attachment bars
Use this to design and attach the enclosures and maintain proper openings for the outlets. They’ll provide proper ventilation and reduce overheating. DIY-ing a covering yourself can be done easily by putting on some elbow grease.
So these are some of the ways you can use your generator, even in harsh weather. Additionally, remember these tips. Always buy a transfer switch for a constant power supply. A GFCI is also important, which acts as a circuit breaker. It will cut off power if you receive a shock. Always switch off the main power before inspecting your generator. Wear gloves and use one hand to touch the generator.
That way, the circuit will not complete itself within your body. That only happens if you use both hands. And always, always, always, wear rubber-soled shoes. You must understand how important these measures are. As I’ve said before, you don’t want to feel a thousand volts in your body!
So, are generators waterproof? Hopefully, now you know the answer, and you also know that they require proper coverings or canopies to sustain them in rainy weather. So, use temporary enclosures or canopies for portable generators.
And steel for the permanent ones, or you can make one yourself. Avoid direct contact while inspecting generators by wearing proper rubber gloves and shoes. Hopefully, I was able to help you in some way. Thank you for reading it till the end.