Portable generators can prove extremely worthy in adverse weather conditions. If you get hit by a heavy storm, a portable generator can provide you with so badly needed emergency source of electricity to keep you going.
There is one major problem though – how can you run a generator in the rain? Can a generator get wet at all? If no, how on earth can you use one safely during a hurricane?
Fortunately, there is a solution. It’s a portable generator shelter.
These come in different types and can be a real game-changer if you suddenly find yourself having to run a generator during a storm. We’re gonna have a look at some of the best types of portable generator shelters now.
This is by far our favorite type of portable generator shelter available.
First, the GenTent is definitely the most portable and affordable option (check out the latest price on Amazon)
This type of canopy can be easily attached to any kind of portable generator, including both smaller camping inverters as well as the larger 10,000-watt open frame generators.
Generator tent is easy to attach and detach
The kit contains a self-attaching clamping system which allows you to mount in on your generator without having to use any additional tools.
Setting up the generator tent, including clamping, framing and covering should only take you around 10 minutes in total.
Detaching it is also very straightforward.
The GenTent is designed to withstand the snowfall of up to 18 inches.
It should also withstand the hurricane winds blowing with the force up to 70 mph.
GenTent is also a much cheaper solution than steel enclosures.
In our opinion, this kind of shelter is by far the best option if you need a robust portable generator shelter which you can easily connect to any generator and quickly attach and detach when needed.
If you are looking for a more permanent type of generator shelter, you should check out the storage sheds for sale.
These are specifically made for those who need to store a generator for long periods of time in one place such as your house backyard.
These kinds of shelter provide a sufficient level of protection to keep the generator from getting wet during heavy rain or snow.
Another good thing about these enclosures is that they keep the thieves away too.
There are two downsides to using steel enclosures.
First, it is not recommended to operate the generator inside a solid enclosure for long periods of time as these usually don’t provide enough ventilation to let the fumes and especially the heat escape. This can cause the generator to overheat quickly and damage the unit.
You might need to make a few adjustments to such storage shed to make it sufficiently ventilated and fully functional for a portable generator.
Finally, those kinds of enclosures do not come cheap. If you are willing to make a long term investment than it’s certainly not a bad idea at all to get one. On the other hand, if you need a more cost-effective and portable shelter (eg. for RV), then the generator tent we’ve mentioned before is a better choice.
Finally, if you are more of the DIY type of person, there is nothing preventing you from building your own enclosure.
You can either make a wooden mini-shed for the generator or a sophisticated generator tent.
There are some good video tutorials explaining this step by step.
Things you should remember when building a portable generator shelter:
- provide enough ventilation for the air to flow freely
- all vulnerable parts of the generators (especially the outlets) must be well covered – those are the ones which can’t get wet at any cost
- the shelter is solid enough to withstand not only heavy rain but also strong winds
- it’s made from soundproof materials (eg. wood is fine)- you can easily kill two birds with one stone – protect your generator and quiet it down!
Why Can’t a Generator Get Wet in the First Place?
Even though modern portable generators are more technologically advanced and generally safer to use than the older types, they are still not fully resistant to adverse weather.
One particularly vulnerable part are the outlets.
That’s where there is the highest risk of water getting inside the generator causing it to stall.
Generators also produce a high voltage which, when combined with water, can lead to a serious risk of electrocution.
Just like you wouldn’t like to expose any small electrical appliance or electronics to the heavy rain, the same applies to the generators. However, since they deal with much higher power levels, you need to take extra precautionary measures to protect a generator and yourself from the rain.
A generator itself can also get damaged very easily when wet. This damage can sometimes be permanent.
Therefore whichever type of shelter you choose, whether it be the gentent or a wooden enclosure – make sure you do your best to keep it from the rain or snow.
Final Word – Which Portable Generator Shelter Should You Get?
In our opinion, the generator tents are the best choice for most of the portable generator users. These things did not exist several years ago forcing people to either buy pricey steel enclosures or come up with DIY home remedies.
Fortunately, now when the GenTents can be easily purchased online, you can get a versatile, inexpensive and very compact shelter to protect your generator from rain and snow.
A lot of people reported using them during the hurricanes without problems.
Therefore, if you need a generator to help you survive the next storm – you might definitely wanna get one of those tents!