Our Advice:

Generators come in all shapes and sizes, a basic rule of thumb is that they should be at least the same capacity as your inverter or able to supply your maximum demand at any one time, they should preferably be Diesel (bio-fuel/red diesel) or BioGas and run at no more than 1500rpm, and as quiet as possible! One other point is that water cooled are usually quieter and you may be able to harvest the heat from the generator to supply your property.

 We supply Stephill generators as we have had some experience of them - they use high quality components and are built in the UK

This is a typical super silent generator from Stephill:

file:///D:/Lenovo%20User/Documents/My%20Web%20Sites/OldEnergistar/images/SSDX12-X16-X20W.jpg12KVA 1500RPM Stephill Diesel Generator features a Kubota water cooled engine for ultimate quality and reliability. The engine is close coupled to a Mecc Alte alternator. Due to Stephills superior manufacturing techniques this diesel generators leads the others standing with its class leading noise levels.

All SSD range generators are built to an extremely high specification and are available in static as standard with the option of site tow or road tow trailer form. All generators feature high quality close fitting weather-proof acoustic canopies, overload protection, LOP/HET shutdown and long run bunded fuel tanks.

Combined Heat & Power (CHP)

Combined heat and power systems (CHPs) are industrial prime duty generators where as much of the (normally wasted) heat is recovered and supplied in the form of hot water in the same way a boiler supplies hot water.

The obvious advantage of a CHP is that you put at least 85% of the calorific value of your fuel to good use compared with just 30% when using a standard generator. If you were already planning on buying a generator, it makes sense to consider a CHP as it will give you the same (electricity) but you get your heating for free. It becomes a boiler, using the heat from the generator engine.

The term CHP is well-established in large commercial systems, so when we talk about domestic scale CHPs, they are generally referred to as micro CHPs.

Here’s what the Energy Saving Trust think about micro CHPs. Here’s a report by EA Technology Ltd. If there’s anything else you’d like to know about micro CHP, have a look here.

Dependable Power (and Heat)

All UFL micro CHP systems are designed for prime duty, not just backup. They are built using industrial engines that are designed to run for  long hours. Residential power generation requires long running hours.

Inside View of CHP Generator

Being off-grid doesn’t mean your energy costs are higher

If your daily domestic consumption of electricity is 12kWhrs (at £0.14 per kWhr from the grid), your annual electricity bill will be £613. This doesn’t include standing charges and graduated tariffs where the first ~500 units are charged at ~£0.22.

When the UFL GenStation micro CHP generates the equivalent electricity, it also provides 9855kWhrs of heat in the form of 80 degree hot water. The cost of this heat, if supplied by the gas grid using a 70% efficient boiler and a gas price of 4p/kWhr, would mean an annual cost of £563 per year.

This is an annual grid energy bill of £1,176.

Generating 12kWhrs of electricity using the UFL GenStation will require the machine to run for 3 hours per day. This means an annual running time of 1095 hours. With an electrical efficiency of 26%, the GenStation will consume 1.54 litres of diesel per hour. This is 1,686 litres per annum. At today’s price of red diesel (£0.5248), the annual cost would be £885.

Therefore, Electricity and Heating from the UFL GenStation will cost almost £300 less than getting it from the grid.

End View of CHP Generator

Or if you like a challenge then you can always go for the old Lister / Petter types of generator, if you can find them..... they also make some fairly good copies of the old classics!

Indian Listeroid 6 CSIf you can get hold of any of the old originals, you can get most of the spares etc from here