Building a Generator: The Best Way to Back Up Your Power

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If you need power for your home or business in case of an emergency, one of the best solutions may be to construct your own generator as a reliable source of power. Many homes and facilities require a complete lack of power loss risks, eliminating worry on your part, particularly those with machinery that operates on a constant basis, such as a location that regularly uses packaging equipment. Building a sturdy generator will allow you to keep your home or business facility running without fearing the consequences of a blackout. Here’s one way to build a basic but effective generator for your electricity needs. Keep in mind there are other methods for other types of generators, which I will share on here, but these particular instructions are for a basic generator used for purposes such as powering air conditioning systems.

1. Obtain an Engine

What you’ll need in order to build your generator is an engine. This part is a top priority, and its size will depend on the amount of power that usually runs through it. Ideally, you should choose an engine between 5 and 10 horsepower for a more compact generator. Most engines rate horsepower at a speed of 3,600 rotations per minute, so keep that in mind. Motors of this size are usually the same as those found in lawn mowers and should be available at stores that sell lawn equipment, such as Sears.

2. Find an AC Generator Head

An AC generator head utilizes an internal magnet to generate electricity when the external engine spins the magnet mounted on the shaft. When looking for the right size to match your engine, turn to the manufacturer specifications to learn which engine size is compatible with it. For most purposes, a generator should output between 2,500 to 5,000 watts, with around 900 watts produced per horsepower. Look to industrial equipment catalogues or industrial supply stores for generator heads.

3. Choose a 12 Volt DC Alternator

You’ll want to find a DC alternator that generates 12 volts when the external engine spins the shaft, and it should have a voltage regulator built into it. 500 watts should be enough power to run it, with another horsepower provided by the engine. You can find these easily at most auto part stores.

Taking these steps in mind, you should have a generator that works in most basic applications such as powering air conditioning equipment. I’ll go into how to build other generators for more industrial purposes soon.