Generator,,Cook Electric
Written by Larry Cook

Top Considerations for the Placement of Your New Standby Generator


Prior to the installation of your new standby generator, there are several important factors to consider for its proper placement. The first will be the distance from the generator to your home. The second will be the distance from the generator to your electrical service, which is the main panel, fuse box, or breaker box.

Noise Level

A standby generator needs an engine to function, which will create noise. Fortunately, the top brands run quietly. Modern 22 KW home standby generators have been measured at around 66 decibels. This noise level is similar to a typical HVAC system. As a result, most exterior locations are suitable for the location of a high-quality unit.

Wiring Required

You should be aware that more costs will result if a standby generator is installed a considerable distance from the electrical service because more wiring will be required. When a generator’s location is near the electrical panel, the electrician will need less electrical wire for the connection to your home’s electrical system.

Fire Protection Codes

As set forth by National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Code 37, “Standard for the Installation and Use of Stationary Combustion Engines and Gas Turbines (2010)” section 4.1.4, a generator’s engine has to be a minimum of 5 feet away from wall openings such as doors and windows. It also must be a minimum of 5 feet away from structures that have combustible walls. Make sure to verify state and local codes with your electrician before installation.

Home Owners Associations

HOA covenants often have restrictions regarding the placement of generators, and it is your responsibility to ensure compliance with the help of your electrician.

Safety Considerations

Generators must not be installed inside a crowded or enclosed area like a garage, carport, or porch. Their engines generate heat, therefore plenty of air circulation around a unit is needed for cooling. In addition, generators produce hazardous carbon monoxide, and so they should not be installed near windows that open.

Electrical Peace of Mind

Providing professional electricians since 1988 in Maryland, Cook Electric is the company you can rely on for all your electrical service needs. For knowledgeable, fair, honest, reliable, and conscientious service, call Cook Electric today at (410) 266-9040. We will be very glad to help you.