How to Choose the Right Generator for Shipping Container Offices
Let’s take a page out of one of the founding fathers of not only America but electricity. A loss in power equals a loss in productivity, whether you’re in retail, construction, healthcare or government.
If you’re renting or buying our shipping container offices, you might want to consider buying or renting a generator too. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as picking one from your favorite hardware store and hooking it up to your container.
If you don't pick the right size generator, you're going to have a bad time! You might be able to turn on the lights or charge your phone, but if you try to turn on the heater or AC, the circuit breaker is gonna trip. An oversized generator for the job will burn too much fuel and will increase your maintenance costs.
How do you determine the “goldilocks” of generators? It depends. We’ll be going over all the factors you need to consider when picking out a generator for your business needs.
How Much Power do you REALLY Need?
Before you buy or rent a high-powered generator for your shipping container office, you’ll need to make a list of all the devices you use. This includes HVAC, lighting, computers, printers, routers, coffee makers, and TVs. Next, you’ll need to look into their specs and write down each one of their wattage, voltage, and amperage. After you’ve gathered all the necessary information, start adding the wattage of every device on that list and that will give you an idea of how much wattage you need for your generator.
If you only know the amps and volts of your equipment, multiply amps by volts to get the wattage.
Or you can use this handy calculator:
Picking the Generator
Your company's needs will dictate how powerful your generator needs to be. For our office shipping containers, you may use a portable generator between 3 kW and 10 kW or a trailer-mounted generator between 10 kW and 30 kW.
You shouldn’t operate portable office generators for more than 30 minutes at maximum power. However, if you plan on using it as a primary power source, the generator should be a size that can operate within 70-80% capacity, which will help with overall performance and allows for any further power requirements.
Other factors to consider
Now that you’ve figured out your office’s power requirement, it’s time to figure out what other factors are going to be important for your business.
When creating a budget for a generator, it is essential to consider both your power needs and cost restraints. Don't skimp on quality or reliability, but be aware that portable office generators come in various price ranges. Compare costs and features to determine which one is most suitable for your finances.
Size and Capacity
When choosing a portable office generator, it's important to get one that can handle your current and future power needs. Make sure you get a generator that can do more than what you need it to do, as having a bit of extra power will come in handy.
Take a look at the fuel sources available in your area and pick a generator that works with whatever is convenient and easy to get.
Check how long the generator can last on a full tank of fuel. In construction or healthcare, you need a generator that can run for a long time without frequent refills. Try to find a portable office generator with fuel-saving features to cut down on expenses.
Generators can be noisy, so it's important to get one with a low decibel rating. While you consider engines humming as white noise, your neighbors don't.
Look for models with strong handles, wheels, or trailers to make it easier to move around.
If you're working on a construction site, you'll need a generator that can handle the rugged conditions. Look for one that's built to last, with features like weatherproofing and good warranties to make sure it stays reliable over time.
Features Important to YOU
Think about the extras you want when you pick a generator, like being able to check on it remotely or having it switch on automatically. If safety is one of your main concerns, then look for a generator that has a lot of safety features like circuit breakers and low oil shutoffs. Figure out which features are important to you before you make a decision.