GAL Power Systems strongly believes that an informed customer is the best customer. The information provided below is meant as a primer to electric power generation. Once you've decided to purchase a generator set, there are several considerations you must keep in mind when choosing which set to buy, where to install it and how to install it.
This guide will help you understand the basics and make informed decisions during the selection process. Choosing the right machine is not difficult once you take the time to analyze your requirements carefully.
Engine block: For long life and quiet operation we recommend four cycle, liquid cooled, industrial duty diesel engines.
Air or liquid cooling: Air-cooled engines require a tremendous amount of air and may require ducting. They're noisy too. Liquid cooling offers quieter operation and more even temperature control.
Intake and exhaust: Time and money savers include a large, integral air cleaner with replaceable filter element and a residential muffler, which is built into the exhaust manifold. This saves the need for an additional muffler.
The lubrication system should have a full flow, spin-on oil filter with bypass.
Major brand of engine – We do not recommend you purchase a Chinese built unit or off brand engine, you will not be able to obtain the necessary follow-on parts and service support available with our machines!
DC electrical system. Standard 12 volt system should include:
Starter motor and battery charging alternator with a solid state voltage regulator
Diesel units should come with a pre-heat switch and start/stop switch
Safety shutdown system to protect the engine in case of oil pressure loss, generator overspeed or overcrank and high water temperature
DC system circuit breaker.
AC generator should have a 4-pole revolving field. An automatic voltage regulator will provide “clean” power. Normal utility power is +/- 5% voltage regulation; our 1800-rpm models are even better +/- 2%! All of our models offer AVR – Automatic Voltage Regulation
Lifetime lubricated bearing – some less expensive units – are not supplied with these bearings…they often require complete disassembly every two or three years for bearing replacement. All Power Generators units are provided with industrial quality lifetime lubricated bearings
ENGINE ACCESSORIES AND CONTROLS
Upon determining the generator size you will need, make a list of optional and installation equipment you require. For noise abatement, we recommend a residential (not industrial grade) muffler. A good primary fuel filter/water separator is a must to protect your engine's fuel system. Stand-by sets may require a block heater to keep the coolant/water mix at an adequate temperature for easier starting.
AC SWITCHGEAR AND CONTROLS
Switchgear can be as simple or complex as you want or can afford. Of course, as complexity increases, so does cost. Balance and a good electrical advisor are the keys here. The diagrams at right illustrate basic configurations for prime power and stand-by systems. All generator systems require a circuit breaker and a distribution panel. The circuit breaker protects the generator set from short circuit and unbalanced electrical loads. The distribution panel divides and routes the connected loads and includes circuit breakers to protect these loads. Stand-by systems also require a main circuit breaker between the utility source and the transfer panel. The transfer panel switches power from the utility to the gen-set and back so that both aren't on at the same time. Auto-start, auto-transfer systems are available but are costly. Your supplier or contractor can help you determine what you will need.
Please remember - GAL Power Systems can provide for all your generator needs from 2 Mega Watt units for industrial customers seeking heavy-duty industrial main or standby generators to residential models. We can provide you with diesel, natural gas or propane powered units. Call GAL today for top quality products or for help in selecting the generator that is right for you!