While you are in the woods and wild camping, the likely power source you’ll be carrying along is a power generator. Unless you don’t want to spend a night there – but let’s assume you’ve gone there for days.
It comes in handy as it provides the electrical power useful for lighting up your camping site, tents and even more, charge your devices like laptops, cameras, and iPhone among others.
Generators can be very loud and irritating, everybody knows this unwanted fact. You will have them around the site but not without paying the bitter cost of “yes, we will adjust to the noise”.
You might have suffered through the hands of a noisy generator for long like some of us. But once I discovered that there were easy-peasy ways to silence this undoubtedly useful machine, my fears became a thing of the past.
Today, it is all-fun-all-joy when I go out for camping. As I have the generator effectively handled to give everyone the ultimate peace of mind as we enjoy our outings.
Keep calm and I am going to share with you exhaustively how to make a generator quiet for camping. There are methods you can implement and get it spot on for the benefit of everyone around you.
But then …
What Causes the Generator to Sound Loud?
Yes, the generator makes a lot of bad noise – irritating whirring noise so much hated. Just before you think about making it quiet, it doesn’t hurt to look at some of the things that could be contributing to that.
Here are those things:
- How its Constructed
The build of the generator by the manufacturer is a strong factor. The higher its power and wattage, the noisier it becomes.
And big generators will produce more noise than smaller ones. Hence, a smaller generator will be quieter than the larger one.
- Where Your Generator is Located
This is straightforward – placing the generator closer to the tents is a direct guarantee to lots of loud noises. Definitely, the noise vanishes as you take it further away from the tents.
Again, mounting it on higher levels may have an effect on the amount of noise it produces. Shaky and hard flat surfaces can make it vibrate insanely.
- Soundproofing the Generator
Making a generator quieter by soundproofing it can effectively control the noise it emits. A soundproof box should make things easier but its bulkiness is a huge burden to run away from – doesn’t just work for camping.
The truth is some generators come with soundproof measures already applied to them. For example, the engine could have a layer of rubber around it.
Besides, the legs can be covered with rubber pads to reduce the vibrations intensity and slipping. With these, your generator should produce a different amount of noise compared to when it hasn’t been soundproofed at all.
- The Energy Levels of the Generator
The fourth point you want to consider is the different energy levels of the generators. The energy levels of one generator are not the same as another’s.
The higher this level/wattage, the louder your machine would be and vice versa. That’s why you need to know your needs and match with the right generator.
In view of the immediate point above, you could still acquire a powerful generator and have it produce the minimum possible noise, thanks to the production technology of the generator.
This is usually the case with inverter technology. Which has become a major positive that helps to run the generators smoothly and quietly as opposed to the conventional designs.
- What About Fuel?
Get to know that the kind of fuel a generator runs on can make it a loud device or (thanks!) a silent one. So, reviewing the different fuels you know – diesel engines are the most notorious, and common for your information.
The environmental friendly options like gas and solar battery are not kind enough in their prices, something that has distorted the interest of many. And we still give ourselves to the cheap but noisy diesel.
9 Simple Tricks on How to Make a Generator Quiet for Camping.
You are now aware of the factors to consider before devising a method to quieten your power generator. The next step is to learn how to quiet a generator for camping.
To be honest, some of the methods I am about to share are quite obvious things you might have thought about and just rubbished. Don’t do that this time!
1. Try to Move the Generator from the Camping Shelters
This is the simplest trick of all time. The closest you want to place your generator is about 20 feet away from the campsite.
Some manufacturers indicate how much sound that is emitted by their machines. Which is a good thing – but there are more conditions to be observed.
For example, besides the decibel measurements, as shown on the device, there’s a specific distance you must have to place your generator to achieve your goal of keeping the quietness.
But all said, you will not like the sounds of the generator near. So as much as possible, locate it far, far away from your tents.
You may have tried this approach. And don’t worry if it didn’t work out on its own; the next method can be even more helpful. \
2. Buy or Build a Generator Muffler Box
By the way, you could also make it yourself.
A quiet generator muffler box is an enclosure made to hold the generator inside. The results are that sound is captured inside.
This is an effective way to thwart large amounts of unwanted noise from your generator. All of it is trapped right inside the “cage”.
As I said, don’t fret to make your own box, if there is time to do it yourself. It saves lots of bucks.
3. Alter the Positioning of the Exhaust Valves
The direction of your generator’s exhaust pipes could be the whole noise problem you didn’t know. A simple change with the way they are positioned (normally they are outward hence that’s how the sound waves are released) to a vertical position makes the traveling sound waves to be redirected upwards into the atmosphere.
The noise is considerably reduced.
Alternatively, have the exhaust pipes point away from you in another direction.
4. Mount Generator on Rubber Pad/Platform
It is important to overlook all hard surfaces. A great tip for you: give your generator a soft landing.
If you try to mount it on wood boards or concrete, you are just trying to invite more vibrations, more noise, and more problems. Run away from the metal surfaces too, for me this is prohibited.
You can’t make generator quiet by doing this.
You better place it on earth and this could reduce the vibrations. Setting it on the anti-vibration mat or padding is a better-placed idea.
Also, keep looking for thick, heavy carpets and land your generator there. You will notice a massive difference.
Any material that can absorb extra sound and vibrations is ideal for this approach. Just try them on.
I haven’t even mentioned your unused blankets. And other old clothes!
5. Use Water, it can Work!
Once you have a bucket full of water and a hose, you can believe the strategy. It requires some bits of physics here and there but don’t worry, it is a simple task.
Just connect the hose to the exhaust pipe and its other end dip it in the bucket full of water. Your generator has the habit of releasing most its sounds through the exhaust.
This time around, that’s not happening – everything is muffled under the water. The same way you can’t be heard when you shout under the deep waters.
You also want to make sure that as the exhaust sounds get dampened into the water, this water doesn’t find a way of leaking into the generator itself.
One of the ways to avoid water from going through the hose into the generator is by placing your generator on higher ground. Otherwise, poke a small hole on the hose near the exhaust to drain any climbing water.
6. Get a New Exhaust Muffler
Another method on how to make a generator quiet for camping could be replacing the current muffler on the exhaust. A muffler is the last part of the exhaust and is the silencing agent for all sounds being emitted by the exhaust pipe.
If you can get a bigger muffler, then you will sort lots of noise problems at the exhaust levels.
I have to caution you, however, that it’s not easy to get mufflers for generators. For motor cars and motorbikes, you’d definitely find them with ease. I have suggested this exhaust muffler for you trial.
Meaning that you need to do thorough research online. Or get help from a professional mechanic who knows his job that even if he didn’t locate one, he would still go ahead and custom-make a muffler to cater to your generator specifically.
7. Create an Acoustic Barrier
If you have been following our articles, on reviews of the soundproofing materials, I have on all occasions recommended the use of acoustic barriers. But you haven’t, I still got you covered.
The first tip you can implement is installing sound deflectors. The sound deflectors are going to redirect your generator sound away from you and toward another direction.
You could get more creative and cleverly use soundproof curtains, or blankets. It is possible! And this is how: make a partition first spacious for the generator, create frames of wire or wood around the partition and hang or place them around the enclosure.
While this can help, you have to keep checking if nothing is burning time and again – my recommendation, anyway.
8. Make a Rubber Flap/Cover for Generator
This is a complementary method that works together with a generator quiet box. After building this box, you want to make sure that the side with controls is left uncovered.
Now the rubber flap comes in here: it is attached to the uncovered/open side. Since it’s made from high-quality material that comes with sturdiness, mass and heat resistance, a lot of noise from the generator is blocked off.
9. Buy a Silent Generator
Buying a completely new generator is the next move if you aren’t satisfied with the ideas mentioned above. The market presents you with a range of types.
Therefore, going for a quiet generator is the only permanent solution you have for your needs. This is not to promise that there will be an overhaul of things all of a sudden, but a quiet device might just be able to emit low volume sounds.
If you combine this with other ways on how to make the generator quiet for camping, you could achieve a good chunk of your soundproofing goals as far as your camping generator is concerned.
I just want to emphasize on the need to buy smaller generators with less powerful motors, say 4000 watts. They naturally produce less noise and vibrations.
So, this would be probably a portable generator that you can carry effortlessly in your car for camping trips. I don’t need to stress that bigger machines are not even a thinkable option.
I would recommend this Champion model with open frame inverter with quiet technology, gas powered and portable for your place to place transportation.
I guess that what you have learned up to this end is good enough to help you get started. The good thing with these methods I have outlined is that they are all easy to implement after all.
The other thing is that they won’t milk your pockets as such. So don’t keep off.
As usual, yet again, don’t give up with just the first attempt. You need to keep changing between different methods and even combine others to help you reach the goals you have.
The last thing you want to encounter is a disturbed camping expedition because of the generator – but believe me you – it can cause all problems in the campsite.
So, you better learn and understand how to quiet a loud generator. Feel free to provide any feedback or ask a question if something is not crystal clear.