Camping is a great escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. It allows you to enjoy the peace and quiet of the outdoors, away from noise and stress. Even in the refuge of Mother Nature, however, your peace and tranquility can be interrupted by unwelcome noises, including the noise from a generator. If you are in the market for a portable generator to take on your camping trips, make sure that you select one that won’t break the peace of your camping expeditions with bothersome noise levels.
The generators of yesteryear were noisy, but technology has allowed for the production of quiet generators that bring the modern convenience of home to the campsite without making a ruckus. Today’s recreational generators are small, quiet, and capable of producing enough power to support basic camping amenities.
As you look for a camping generator to purchase, consider the following features:
- Power output – The power output of a generator is assessed in terms of wattage rating, expressed as maximum power and rated power. Maximum power is the most that the generator can produce in a 30-minute period. Rated power is the power it can produce over long periods of time, which is usually 90 percent of the generator’s maximum power. Camping generators are divided into three categories: lightweight generators that provide up to 1,000 watts of power, mid-range models that can provide up to 2,000 watts of power, and larger models that can provide more than 3,000 watts of power.
- Runtime – Runtime is the maximum time a generator can operate. It is determined by the load applied, the size of the gas tank, and the efficiency of the generator. Check the different manufacturers’ runtime estimate before you select your generator.
- Dry weight – This refers to the weight of the generator without gas in the tank. You need to consider that a gallon of gas will weigh more than 6 pounds.
- Noise level – This is an important consideration in the selection of a camping generator. Noise level is measured in decibels (dBA), but not all manufacturers will provide this information. The best way to assess a generator’s sound is to observe the machine in action at a camping or RV show.