In today’s article, I’ll show you different ways how to make a portable generator quieter.
Generators play an essential role in our homes by supplying us with clean backup power in the event of blackouts.
They also provide power when out camping in the wood or on a road trip.
Unfortunately, most traditional generators can be quite loud, making you feel uncomfortable whenever you power them.
If that’s the case for you, you will need to find ways to fix the noise problem.
Ways on How to Make a Portable Generator Quieter
Below is a detailed guide on some of the best methods on how to make your generator quiet.
Let’s get started:
1. Get A Generator That Matches Your Needs
What are your power needs?
Get a generator that’s just adequate for you may save you the noisy situation altogether.
As a rule of thumb, the noise a portable generator produces increases with the rise in power.
A robust generator may not be necessary unless you want a backup power source.
While it is tempting to get a powerful generator that can match present and future power needs, just remember, the more powerful it is, the more the noise.
If you plan to use the generator to power your tablets, phones, and other essentials when you go camping, go for a less powerful generator.
It is much quieter and will adequately take care of your power needs.
If you take a camper refrigerator or microwave with you, a more powerful generator may be necessary.
Fortunately, some generators are designed to run quietly, even though they may cost slightly more.
When you go shopping, consider the quiet generators fitted with a few sound-deadening features.
Check the decibel rating and any option in the 60 dB is ideal if it meets your power needs.
2. Place the Generator Further Away
The distance between your campsite or house and the generator is another factor to consider.
If possible, place the generator in the farthest corner where you can barely hear it running.
When you considering the distance, please keep your camping neighbors in mind.
You do not want to place your generator so close to your neighbors that it will bother them.
If there are no other campers in sight, the length of your cord will determine how far you can place the generator.
You can invest in extra-long extension cords that allow you to keep the generator about 20 feet away.
3. Let the exhaust pipes face up/away
If you cannot move the generator away for whatever reason, how about you ensure that the exhaust pipes are facing away from you.
This way, the noise coming from them will be directed to the other side.
For some models, it is also possible to direct exhaust pipes to the sky.
Whichever option you have, just ensure that the exhaust pipes are directed away from you.
4. Replace the muffler
This is a highly effective way to make a portable generator quieter.
The muffler may already be damaged and not working as well to reduce the noise generated.
This simple part works to muffle the sound coming from the exhaust pipes.
Since the exhaust pipes are the second loudest parts in your generators, addressing the source’s noise will ensure that you enjoy a much quieter generator.
Get a more extensive, high-quality muffler and attach it to the motor.
A similar-sized muffler will work great, but a bigger piece will offer better sound-muffling properties.
The muffler consists of perforated tunes that deflect sound waves, significantly lowering it.
A larger one will come with more surface area, explaining why it is a good idea to get a larger one.
If you cannot find a muffler to match your generator, get one custom made.
Also, you can search online to see the varieties available and their ratings.
With the right muffler, you can expect to lower the generator sound by 10-12 decibels.
5. Use Water as a Muffler
If getting a custom muffler for your portable generator sounds like too much work, how about using water instead.
With a 5-gallon bucket filled with water and a hose, you can get an effective muffler.
Just ensure that you have a clamp to keep the hose secured to the exhaust pipe and keep the generator.
The generator should be placed on a higher surface than the water bucket.
This is to prevent the water from flowing backward and getting into the generator’s exhaust pipe.
Drilling a few holes in the hose to prevent water backflow also works.
While water is not as effective as a store-bought muffler, it will reduce the generator noise by 5-7 decibels.
This method is almost cost-free, making it perfect if you want to know how to make a portable generator quieter on a budget.
6. Get a Generator Baffle Box
A baffle box, otherwise known as an acoustic enclosure, will help a great deal where a noisy portable generator is concerned.
The enclosure works to contain sound waves, significantly reducing the noise levels from the generator.
Baffle boxes are readily available, and you can quickly get the right size for your generator. The box is also easy to build.
If you choose to make your baffle box, you need some wood, L-brackets, foam sealer, and quiet board.
Check videos online on how you can make a baffle box from the comfort of your own home.
You can also choose to include a sound-deadening mat to enhance the box’s effectiveness.
Ensure that there is space for the exhaust pipes and enough room for air circulation so your generator will continue running efficiently.
7. Ensure That the Generator Is Placed on A Soft Surface
When placing your generator, you have to ensure that the surface will dampen the noise.
Placing your generator on concrete, asphalt, or wood is not a good idea if you are concerned about noise as these surfaces only make the noise worse.
When camping, check for an area with grass and place your generator there.
A lawn like surface works great to dampen the generator’s rumbling, and because they are stable, your generator will also stay in one position.
If you have to place the generator on a cemented surface, remember to carry an anti-vibration mat with you.
These mats, usually made of rubber, help reduce the vibration and dampen the generator’s noise.
Anti-vibration mats are multi-functional and perfect for any appliance that produces a lot of noise.
Just slip them under your appliance, and you will enjoy a much quieter space.
You can use more than one mat under the generation as long as you lay them well and ensure that the surface is flat.
On How to Make a Portable Generator Quieter
Above are some of the best methods on how to make a portable generator quieter.
For best results, you could try implementing two or more methods at once.
If you decide to make an enclosure box yourself, just make sure that you leave enough ventilation.
This will help prevent the generator from overheating.