There have been groundbreaking advancements in technologies over the past few years; however, the generators we use commonly today still produce “dirty power.” You see, most generators and power grids provide inconsistent powers. They harm different home devices you own, those running on electricity. Unless you own a specific type of generator (Inverter Generators) and if you own one of the conventional generators out there, chances are, you will deal with power outputs that are inconsistent and interrupted. What’s so bad about inconsistent power, you may ask? The TV you have at home, the fridge, the computer, the oven, and most other good-to-have accessories have a chance of malfunctioning and completely dying off due to so-called “dirty power.”
What’s Dirty Power?
Everyone has heard of pollution, and dirty power is similar, except for the fact that its pollution of energy/electricity. It has become much more prevalent in the past years. What it basally is, is the transfer of abnormal electric flow. Every electrical system you see is based on a fundamental systematic supply of power. There are a specific voltage and frequency for every device. Each device has an expected power requirement that avails the best performance. Times when the expected power does not match the delivered power to a system, problems occur. Generators can produce “Dirty power” for many reasons. Some of them include.
- Voltage variations
- Frequency variations
- Low power factor
If you observe these occurrences, you will find common ground in all of them. It’s the inconsistency and disruption of power. However, there are ways to counter the issue, as solutions already exist. They will clean. The power that is being produced by your generator and then re-route it to your devices. It’s paramount to understand that hardware issues make power consistency worse. The first thing any owner of a generator should do is clean their device and keep it clean as best as they can. Dirt in the motor and accumulation of old fuel in the tank can make any generator perform worse. Generators struggle with RPM even without dust, but the presence of it makes things much worse. This is why if you already own a generator, follow the brief generator cleanup process.
How to Clean Generator Power?
The initial step is unquestionably to watch your generator’s condition. That way, things will get more straightforward. Check if the wires are loose. Frayed wiring, loose connection, and corded stuff can be the cause of several issues. You may meet challenges like stuck buttons and knobs. Ensure you dispose of such nuances in advance before you proceed with anything else. Next, you would need to deal with the motor. Cleaning it is vital as It’s a significant piece of your generator—the mind of the entire framework in a sense. More often than not, mud will develop inside the motor promoting low force and unexpected stoppage issues like inconsistent RPM. You ought to use warm water to tidy it up. Ensure you clean the outsides as well. Keep in mind, a weighty washer that soaks up too much water and gets drenches easily is a major no for this job. It can make the entire framework tumble down. So be cautious. When the motor tidied up, ensure you fuel it up. Never use old fuel and always derive your generator of degraded fuels- A compulsory rule to follow. You can store the fuel in a safe spot where it has less possibility of degrading. Likewise, abstain from powering the generator in a dusty situation.
Deal with Fuel Sections
Check-up on the fundamental things like the fuel filter and the channel. Examine these parts and clean them routinely to keep the generator in excellent condition and shut the valve when you are doing anything to the sediment. Try not to disregard to wipe the screen of the filter. Additionally, tidy up the tank and its sides. You should appropriately clean the residue repository too. Every one of these things is fundamental before refueling the generator.
Another significant point you have to deal with is checking for spillage. You should regularly assess the generator for fuel spillage. So, it never degrades from the legitimate working condition. Regardless of what measure of dirt there is or its condition, ensure you clean it once. You should likewise change older fuels with newer ones. Once you are done with the cleanup process of your generator, here are the things that you need to consider.
Conventional portable generators that most people own these days create something called “Harmonic Distortion.” It’s the distortion of power in a fundamental sense. Good, clean electricity has a total harmonic distortion (THD) of less than 6%. The above-mentioned portable generators have much higher THD, which is not desirable. The lesser the THD, the better off you are. This is where inverter generators come into play. Inverter generators are better versions of portable generators. Their mechanisms are much more complex, and the power they produce is clean. Clean energy is perhaps one of the best advantages of owning an inverter generator. The problem is that they are expensive and costs an extra sum per watt compared to their conventional counterparts. Inverter generators do not have as high an output as a traditional portable generator.
But the advantages that they provide overweigh their disadvantages. They are much lighter than the typical portable generator, making them more mobile, they are much more efficient, run quieter, and provide pure energy. An inverter generator produces AC, which is converted to DC. In the following step, the DC is converted back to AC, giving inverter generators extra control over the AC domain. If you need extra output power from inverter generators, you can utilize the exclusive feature that it provides, parallel connection. The inverter generates can also adjust its RPM according to the demand, which helps with the power saving aspect of these generators. To know more about inverters, its advantages, and whether if it’s the fitting choice for you, check out this article, it goes deep into the inverter generator discussion.
If you have already invested in a conventional portable generator, then there are ways to counter the surge issues and acquire pure energy. Below are some of the options available to you.
Buy a UPS
UPS devices are one of the simplest ones out there. Inside of them is one or more batteries along with some essential circuitries. But using a UPS may not be the most convenient way to clean up the power delivery of your generator in some cases. The main reason would be the compatibility aspect of a UPS with a generator. You see, not all UPS can be used with a generator. You need to find one that can work with a generator, and they are specific in their execution methods. The UPS-es that are made for use along with generators will internally clean up the power from a generator and produce much smoother sine waves. In short, they smoothen the rough edges of the electrical waves. You can even opt for a smart UPS equipped with AVR=Automatic voltage regulator that supplies clean energy for your valued household electronics.
Get an Automatic Voltage Regulators
AVR helps with the generation of smoother energy from the typical generators’ alternators. One advantage of AVR is that there is no need to convert your AC power to DC. When buying an AVR, make sure you get one that is compatible.
Use A Pure Sine Wave Inverter
Another way to get clean energy is to invest in a converter that converts the power sent by the generator into sine waves. These are known as sine wave converters.
It’s a device that converts DC power to AC power, making it more delicate and refined. The outcome is a safe electricity output to your TVs, PCs, laptops, and other sensitive devices that you may own. Sine wave converters take the rough power output from generators and soften it up. Another name for it is “true wave converter.”
Use A Power Line Conditioner
One other way to approach the issue is with power line conditioners. Power line conditioners were intended to be used in negating the voltage fluctuations that destroy sensitive devices. With technological development, the conditioner has improved immensely. Now they incorporate things like the AVR to step-up the game and provide cleaner energy.
The advantage of the power line conditioner is its price. High-quality power line conditioners can be found in the sub 100$ price range. It’s pretty crazy if you think about it. However, they come with a caveat; they’re not without weaknesses. You need to read up on the model you are getting and its shortcomings to avoid disappointment. Compatibility, much like the UPS, is an issue with powerline conditioners. When you are buying one, make sure to tell the seller what you will use it for. We have a dedicated article on power line conditioners and alternative solutions. You can give that a read to gain further insight into the matter.
Use a Separate Voltage Regulator
Several regulators were used in multiple devices throughout the passing years. The applications of these regulators were even seen in automobiles to ensure clean, stable voltage. It assesses the voltage that is being outputted and then adjusts the current accordingly to ensure a consistent output despite the source current’s inconsistency.
Separate electronic regulators were invented years back, and they have since been used in multiple applications, including in automobiles, to guarantee stable and clean voltage. You can add both a surge with the voltage regulator to have extra layers of protection.
“Dirty Power” can be dangerous for your peripherals. It can cost you thousands of dollars of damage. The inconsistency in electric voltage and frequency are the rudimental reasons behind harmonic distortion and dirty power. The issue might be threatening, but the solution is simple and cheap. Voltage regulators, powerline conditioners, surge protectors, sine wave converters all serve similar purposes somewhat differently. A power line conditioner is a great option for anyone, and an inverter generator can also be a more suitable option for many people depending on their circumstances. But, one thing is for sure. It’s better to be safe than sorry, and it’s better not to leave things to luck.