Portable generators are one of the most useful devices to have around the house. A portable generator becomes extra prevalent if you live in areas where power cut happens frequently. They are likewise, broadly utilized in places of work and other modern employment spaces. A portable generator utilizes a fuel-powered motor that produces electricity to provide backup energy for your home.
Grounding a generator falls in a different ballpark. Each accompanies electrical plugs that permit you to connect additional lines, machines, and power apparatuses into it. A run of the portable mill generator is equipped with a metal casing with an inner ignition motor, starter, fuel tank, alternator, and outlets. The measure of electric output that a generator can deliver is evaluated by watts. Running watts is the amount of power that is continuously transferred to a piece of equipment. Starting watts for portable generators vary from standby generators and are labeled for customer convenience as they are required to start-up motor-based appliances.
At whatever point you get a portable generator, whether it be a Champion generator, a Honda generator, a 2000-watt generator or a massive 12,000-watt generator, it is imperative to go over the security manual to guarantee you are working your machine securely and appropriately. You may also have to ground your generator depending on the circumstance you will be running your generator. Before grounding your generator, however, you will need to have adequate knowledge of the grounding basics and the tools you will need to achieve a proper grounding.
To know whether your generator requires grounding or not, you can check the manual of the generator as not all generators require the grounding procedure.
Why is Grounding Important?
Portable generators are a unique piece of machinery that you never truly consider. Until that is the time, you really need one. At the point when storms move through or when a snowstorm covers your town and drops the electricity, you need an alternative backup arrangement. Contingent upon where you live or who lives with you, having your power out for about fourteen days isn’t merely awkward as for some; it might as well mean life and death.
While generators can give us this backup power that we need, it is frequently the situation that clients of these machines don’t understand anything about them. It can bring about injuries, electric shock, or more regrettable accidents. With an end goal to instruct people out there, we have put the effort to compose this short article to address a portion of your inquiries. When working with typical portable generators, there are numerous dangers. In this area, we will zero in on the electric shock danger of not grounding your generator. Grounding your generator permits an overabundance of power to be uprooted and keeps clients from incidentally getting shocked by it. Depending on your framework, you may require a grounding pole. A grounding pole is a long copper pole that is around 4-8 feet long.
Presently, don’t be tricked into imagining that all generators need grounding poles. That isn’t the case. Some considerations must be taken. Fundamentally, it comes down to two principle checks:
How are you utilizing your generator? On the off chance that you intend to plug machines directly into your generator using additional lines, then you don’t have to ground your unit as long as you meet the measures from the second check. Alright, the second check that you have to investigate is that all segments of the generator are attached to the generator’s casing. This incorporates your fuel tank, your motor, the generator’s lodging, and the power repositories.
On the off chance that your generator meets the above conditions, at that point, you are OK to push ahead without having to use a grounding pole. This is the case because the generator’s frame itself replaces the grounding rod. That is the reason we checked if each part was attached to the generator frame.
Additionally, there is another incredibly important area that is significant to check, as well. If your generator meets the above conditions, but your framework is connected straightforwardly into your home’s electrical switch by a manual transfer switch, or if it’s associated directly with an infrastructure, you are needed to have a grounding rod. Grounding alludes to a connection between the electrical circuit of a generator to a ground of reference. For a portable generator, the body’s frame is its electrical circuit, and the installed rod that connects to the earth is the reference ground of the generator. The reference ground is an appropriately introduced establishing bar.
If you own a generator that requires being grounded, it is imperative that you do so. The thing with electricity is that it takes the route that has the least resistance, and if you are trying to do maintenance work on your generator, it can prove to be fatal. Some generators in specific use cases need to be grounded to avoid any discrepancies in their current flow, as not doing so can result in permanent damage to equipment that plugged into a generator.
Should You Ground Your Generator?
When it comes to grounding a generator, it is just as crucial as your generator’s maintenance. Although, as we mentioned earlier, not all generators require grounding. You can check online whether your generator requires grounding by searching using its model and specifications. Likewise, you can quickly check the manual provided with the generator to know whether the grounding is something you should do or not. If your generator is a separately derived system, it will require grounding; if not, it will probably not.
You can figure out if your generator is a derived system by yourself. Simply take a glance at the transfer switch. To determine whether your generator is a separately derived system or not, check If your transfer switch can be taken to the neutral ground conductor. If your transfer switch cannot be transferred as described, then you must ground your generator. If you can transfer it to a neutral ground conductor, then grounding isn’t necessary.
Required Tools for Grounding
To complete the procedure smoothly without any inconvenience, you will need a set of tools targeted at the generator grounding procedure. Below are most of the tools that you will need when you proceed to ground your generator.
Solid Copper Wire for Grounding
When you ground your generator using a grounding rod, you must use a copper wire to attach your generator to the copper ground rod. Make sure you have enough space and grounding wire for the job as you might need more grounding wire than you think.
Grounding Rod (4 Foot)
The most critical component of grounding your generator is indeed a grounding rod. It’s required that you find the right grounding rod that’s at least 4foot long and is made of copper.
Wire Stripper Set
This is optional but better to have. It will help you strip the copper wire and then attach it to the generator and copper rod easily. The wire has to be stripped before you are able to make any association. If you do not own a wire stripper, then you can also utilize a knife.
Pliers, Wrench and Hammer
You will need a hammer to push the rod down into the ground. It is essential to do so for proper grounding. A wrench might be needed to loosen the bolt and attach the generator with the copper wire. Pliers can likewise be used to wind the copper wire properly around the rod.
Process of Grounding A Generator
Step 1: The first step that you need to complete is to install your ground rod. You will have to utilize a mallet or a hammer to drive the rod into the ground. The rod will be pushed to the ground to provide a connection between the generator and the ground, which will negate any amount of additional charges that a generator might carry.
Step 2: We mentioned earlier that electricity takes the path with the least amount of resistance. What installing a grounding rod does is create a separate safer pathway with the least amount of resistance so the electricity can utilize that path instead of our body. After you are done hammering the copper grounding rod into the ground, you will need to unwrap the copper wire and attach it to the copper rod.
Step 3: Use a wire stripper to aid you in stripping the copper wire. If you don’t own a wire stripper, simply utilize a scissor or knife while being careful.
Step 4: As you complete the process of stripping the copper wire down, go ahead and proceed to use the pliers to wrap the copper wire tightly to the grounding rod. The opposite side of the wire needs to be stripped before you proceed to ground your generator.
Step 5: Loosen the grounding bolt of your generator by utilizing a wrench. To wrap the stripped wire around the bolt, use your plier.
Step 6: Now, make sure the connection is secure and you are done with the grounding procedure.