When Would I Need a Rental Generator

In a world where upholding businesses often requires high levels of power usage; organisations are much more frequently facing fluctuating power needs that cannot be met by permanent standby generators.

Rental generators provide a versatile and efficient solution to a wide range of possible power challenges – this added layer of protection could be the difference between all your business processes being put on hold for an extended period, or a short interruption that is then resolved allowing your business to function as usual.

Situations that Require Generator Hire

Rental generators play a crucial role in ensuring operational continuity and efficiency across various situations. Here are some examples where generator hire becomes pivotal:

  • Backup for Critical Systems: In sectors like healthcare or data centres, where power failure is not an option, rental generators act as a reliable backup, ensuring critical systems always remain operational. Rental generators for when the power goes out come in all sizes, therefore, it is worth speaking with a professional before looking at the best option for you.
  • Temporary Facilities: In scenarios such as construction sites, temporary offices, or special events, establishing a permanent power setup is often impractical or unfeasible. Rental generators offer a convenient and efficient solution for these temporary setups, providing the necessary power without the need for long-term infrastructure.
  • Disaster Recovery: Natural disasters, accidents, or incidents like fires can cause unexpected disruptions to mains power. In these critical moments, generators for when power goes out becomes indispensable for the immediate restoration of power, aiding in recovery efforts, and minimising operational downtime.
  • Off-Grid Locations: For remote areas or sites that are in the process of securing mains power connections, rental generators are indispensable. They ensure a consistent power supply, enabling businesses and projects in these locations to proceed without delay.
  • Business Continuity: High-demand periods such as the Christmas season or unexpected spikes in business activity require a reliable power source to maintain smooth operations. Rental generators provide the additional power needed to handle these surges without interrupting business continuity.
  • System Maintenance or Upgrades: When existing power systems undergo maintenance or upgrades, there’s a temporary void in power supply. Rental generators step in to fill this gap, ensuring that operations continue seamlessly during these transitional phases.
  • Testing New Systems: Incorporating a new power system into an existing setup requires careful testing and evaluation. Rental generators allow for comprehensive testing of these systems, providing insights into their performance and capacity before full integration.
  • Seasonal Operations: Certain industries with seasonal peaks, such as agriculture or tourism, can benefit from rental generators during their high-activity months, ensuring they have adequate power without the year-round expense.
  • Large-Scale Projects: For major projects or events that demand high power output beyond the regular supply, rental generators offer a scalable solution to meet inflated demands.

Benefits of Renting Instead of Buying

Choosing a rental generator brings a multitude of benefits, tailor-made to suit the diverse requirements of modern businesses. A key advantage is the flexibility it provides. Organisations can adjust their power needs according to current demands, avoiding the long-term commitment and financial implications of purchasing a generator. This flexibility is particularly important in sectors where power requirements can vary greatly, be it due to seasonal shifts or project-specific needs.

Another major benefit is the cost-effectiveness of renting as opposed to buying. For many businesses, particularly those needing generators for short-term use or as an interim solution, the capital investment required to purchase and maintain a generator can be prohibitively high. Rental generators remove these upfront costs, allowing companies to better allocate their financial resources.

Rental generators also offer an immediate solution in emergency scenarios. When unexpected power disruptions occur, whether from natural disasters or technical failures, rental generators can be swiftly mobilised, ensuring minimal operational interruption. This rapid deployment is crucial for industries where continuous power is essential.

Moreover, rental generators come with a high level of customisation. Businesses can select from various models with different capacities and features to perfectly match their specific requirements. This bespoke approach is especially beneficial for one-off projects or unique operational needs.

Lastly, opting for a rental generator includes comprehensive maintenance and support. Businesses are relieved of the burden of upkeep and any technical complications, as these are managed by the rental company. This service ensures efficient and reliable operation of the generator, offering peace of mind to businesses.

Why is Shenton the Best Choice for Generator Rental?

Shenton Group stands out with its comprehensive range of generators, ranging from 30kVA to 1250kVA, catering to bespoke residential, commercial, or heavy-duty applications. Operating 24/7/365 across the UK, we ensure uninterrupted power supply whenever and wherever you need it.

Choosing Shenton Group extends beyond just generator rental; it’s about experiencing a full spectrum of power solutions:

  • Wide Range of Equipment: Including fuel tanks, AMF panels, transformers, cabling, distribution panels, temporary fencing, cable covers, ramps, and acoustic panels.
  • Complete Installation Services: From delivery to full installation, ensuring safe, secure, and tidy setup.
  • Expert Advice: Our experienced and friendly team advises on the best accessories and equipment tailored to your specific needs.
  • Emergency Power Call Service: Shenton Group’s Emergency Power Call service offers a reliable and cost-effective Emergency Generator Rental Subscription, providing unlimited emergency callouts for a fixed monthly fee. With an average response time of 100 minutes and national coverage, the service guarantees power restoration swiftly and efficiently. The subscription also includes full management by trained engineers, from delivery to connection and refuelling, ensuring seamless operation.

Discover how Shenton Group has powered success across various sectors. Explore our Case Studies (This link needs to be fixed) for insights and inspiration on how our rental generators can empower your business.

    Hire a Generator from the Industry Experts

    • Nationwide Coverage

    • 24/7 support service

    • Delivery and installation to guarantee piece of mind

    To explore our updated fleet of 500kVA generators and speak to our highly skilled team of technical experts

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    Why is generator maintenance so important?

    Maintenance for your generator is vital in preventing unexpected breakdowns, making sure that it is functioning to full effect during power outages and getting the most out of your generator lifespan.

    What are signs that my diesel generator is in need of a maintenance check?

    • The generator making strange noises
    • Problems with starting
    • Visible leaks
    • Unexplained damage on the generator
    • Increase in diesel usage

    If a diesel generator is well-maintained, how long can they last?

    A well-maintained diesel generator can have a remarkably long lifespan. Typically, these generators can last between 20,000 to 30,000 hours of operation. This translates to several years of reliable service, depending on how frequently the generator is used. It’s important to note that the longevity of a diesel generator doesn’t just depend on the total hours of operation. Regular maintenance, the quality of parts used, operating conditions, and the quality of the installation all play significant roles in determining its lifespan. Adhering to the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule and addressing any issues promptly are key to maximising the lifespan of a diesel generator.

    What if my diesel generator has an emergency failure?

    Contact Shenton Group and we will send out a qualified technician to help out with the emergency. By doing so promptly, not only will this reduce any possible damage to the generator, but it will minimise your powers downtime.

    What is the impact of regular maintenance checks on diesel generator fuel efficiency?

    Regular maintenance means that fuel efficiency will improve by ensuring that the generator is operating at peak performance levels, supplying the necessary amount of power while reducing fuel consumption and wastage.

    Can I perform maintenance on my diesel generator myself, or should I rely on professional help?

    While there are some very basic maintenance tasks that can be performed by you, we advise that you have our qualified Shenton Group technicians perform the maintenance for your generator. This is to ensure safety and generator health and is compliant with the manufacturer’s guidelines. If there are any basic maintenance tasks to be carried out between visits, our technicians can run through them with you.

    Does Shenton Group provide anything that will help me check the well-being of my diesel generator?

    Yes, we do. We offer remote monitoring systems that will allow you to track the performance of your generator and receive real-time alerts when your generator has any issues and how to optimise its operation.

    What is Remote Monitoring for Diesel Generators?

    Remote monitoring for diesel generators is a sophisticated technology that allows for the observation, tracking, and management of generator performance from a distance. It involves the use of sensors, software, and communication technologies to collect, transmit, and analyse data from the generators. Essentially remote monitoring is a necessary part of your service and maintenance contract to keep a close eye on the generator’s performance. Find out more about our service offering here:

    What if Fuel Polishing?

    Fuel polishing is a process used to clean and maintain diesel fuel in storage to ensure it remains in good condition and is safe for use. Over time, stored diesel fuel can become contaminated with water, sediment, microbes (like bacteria and fungi), and other impurities. These contaminants can degrade the fuel quality and potentially damage the engine or fuel system if used without treatment. Fuel polishing is particularly important for diesel fuel stored for long periods, such as in backup generators.

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    Shenton Group Expanding Rental Fleet to Include 500kVA Generators

    Shenton Group, a trusted provider of power and energy solutions, is pleased to announce the addition of 500kVA generators to their rental fleet. Recognised for their commitment to customer satisfaction and efficient service, Shenton Group now offers these high-capacity generators on a rental basis to cater to the increasing demand across various sectors.

    Key Features of Shenton’s 500kVA Generators:

    • Reliable Power Supply: 500kVA generators ensure a continuous and dependable power source, making them ideal for critical applications.
    • Versatility: These generators exhibit versatility in accommodating diverse configurations and can be seamlessly synchronised, providing adaptability to cater to a range of power needs.
    • Industry-Ready: 500kVA generators from Shenton Group are well-suited for manufacturing, healthcare, and pharmaceutical facilities, where uninterrupted power is paramount.

    The demand for 500kVA generators has surged in recent years due to the increasing reliance on continuous power for essential operations. Shenton Group is proud to offer FG Wilson’s 500kVA generators, renowned for their robust performance and reliability.

    “Our rental services are designed for seamless and hassle-free experiences, representing a commitment to quality. Our highly responsive team is capable of addressing urgent requests, with instances of receiving an inquiry call at 5:00 PM and successfully installing and configuring a generator by 9:00 PM.” – Paul Davis, Rental Manager

    In addition to top-tier equipment, Shenton Group offers comprehensive support, including:

    • 24/7 Call-Outs: Ensuring clients have access to assistance whenever it’s needed.
    • Fuel Management: Efficient management of fuel to maintain uninterrupted power supply.
    • Remote Monitoring: Industry-renowned remote monitoring services to safeguard against potential issues.
    • Shenton Group’s expansion of its rental fleet to include 500kVA generators underscores the company’s dedication to meeting the evolving needs of its clients across industries. Whether for emergency backup or planned maintenance, these generators ensure businesses can continue operations without interruption.
    • For more information about Shenton Group’s rental services and its new 500kVA generators, please visit our Generator Rental Page or directly contact our Rental Manager Paul Davis on +44 07458 300530

      Hire a Generator from the Industry Experts

      • Nationwide Coverage

      • 24/7 support service

      • Delivery and installation to guarantee piece of mind

      To explore our updated fleet of 500kVA generators and speak to our highly skilled team of technical experts

      By using this contact form you agree to the Shenton Groups use of your details in accordance with our Privacy Policy

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      New Starters: Welcome to the Shenton Family Gary Delaney

      Shenton Group would like to welcome the newest addition to our growing Service Sales team – Gary Delaney.   Gary comes with extensive experience in the power rental and standby power sectors at varying levels for over 26 years.

      His background has allowed him to establish expert knowledge in generators, UPS, fuel systems, sales and key account management. He would complement our highly skilled team with his strong technical aptitude and commercial acumen.

      Gary’s main focus within the business would be to support service business growth through development of major accounts across the whole of the UK. His career ambitions and dedication strongly align with the Shenton’s growth plans.

      H2: So Gary, Why Shenton?

      Gary’s decision to join us is rooted in his appreciation for the positive culture and teamwork, which Shenton Group demonstrates.

      “Working in partnership with my colleagues in Service Operations, I intend to apply the knowledge I have gained over 26yrs experience within the power generation industry, to achieve the best outcomes and most cost-effective solutions for both ourselves and our valued clients. Furthermore, Shenton’s friendly, positive culture and teamwork are what stood out to me.”

      Our CEO Curtis Meek said: “We welcome Gary to the Shenton Family and feel that Gary is an excellent addition to the team. He shares our vision and values and will no doubt contribute to delivering our growth plans.

      Contact Gary Delaney:

      Tel: +44 07738 285 254

      Email: [email protected]

      About Shenton Group

      Since 1982 we have provided trusted power solutions to public and private organisations. We supply, install and maintain all aspects of Standby Power, Uninterruptible Power Supplies and Combined Heat & Power Systems. From feasibility and design advice, through to integration and commissioning, we provide peace of mind with a turn-key solution.

      With a strong and established track record in innovation and manufacturing excellence, our mission is to provide the most trusted energy solutions, in an unpredictable world.

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      Extreme Weather Power Outages: Rent a Generator in Advance!

      With Storm Agnes set to cause havoc across the country this Wednesday, the Met office has issued an official warning for severe weather. We saw heave rain last week with more unpredictable weather expected to set in the colder months.

      Essentially storm Agnes will impact on most of the country – with the exception of the South East – with strong winds (gusting between 45-75 mph) from Wednesday afternoon into Thursday.

      For those of you ‘out on the road’ tomorrow and Thursday please take extra care:

      • Even moderate rain can reduce your ability to see and be seen, therefore be prepared to slow down, and give your wipers a chance to clear your windscreen.
      • Roads will be more slippery than usual – especially at this time of year with falling leaves. Therefore, be sure to give yourself more time to react when approaching potential hazards, with the result that you can brake safely.
      • Wherever possible, try to stay on main roads – where you are less likely to be exposed to fallen branches, debris and potential flooding.
      • Always use dipped headlights in bad weather and were visibility can be seriously reduced
      • Gusting wind can unsettle vehicles – be prepared for any unexpected ‘side winds’ when overtaking high sided vehicles.
      • Keep your eyes on the road – as spray from passing vehicles can suddenly reduce your visibility.

      As the weather gets colder and the days get shorter, the demand for electricity increases. This can put a strain on the national grid, which can lead to power outages. That’s why it’s essential to have a backup power solution in place to protect your business. A backup generator is an alternative option to mains power for keeping your lights on and your appliances running even when the power goes out.

      Last February the UK was hit by Storm Eunice. The storm caused widespread damage and power outages, resulting in a surge in enquiries for diesel generators across the country. Rental companies could not keep up with the demand, leaving many people stranded without power. With the predicted bad winter, we urge people to get in contact sooner rather than later to discuss power continuity plans.

      In 2022 we saw an influx in generator enquiries due to the power crisis. Power bills were at an all-time high, causing people to look at alternative power generation. With the possibility of rising energy costs this winter, a potential option could be to rent a generator before investing in a permanent onsite generator. Your energy consumption and varying fuel prices play a part in whether it will be more cost-effective to obtain your power via a generator or the National Grid. Trialling a rental generator will be a safer option for the foreseeable future.

      What to look for When Renting a Generator?

      Renting a generator is a common practice when you need a temporary power source for various purposes, such as construction projects, outdoor events, or as a backup power solution during emergencies such as extreme weather. When renting a generator, it’s essential to consider several factors to ensure you choose the right one for your specific needs. Here’s a checklist of what to look for when renting a generator:Here are three things to look for:

      1. Power Requirements: Determine the power capacity you need. Calculate the total wattage of the equipment, appliances, or devices you plan to power with the generator. Choose a generator that can handle the total load comfortably, allowing for some extra capacity if needed.
      2. Fuel Type: Generators can run on various fuel types, including diesel, natural gas. Choose a generator with a fuel source that’s readily available and convenient for your location and duration of use.
      3. Runtime: Consider how long you’ll need the generator to run continuously. Generators have different fuel tank sizes and fuel efficiency, which will impact their runtime. Ensure the generator can run for the required duration without refueling.
      4. Noise Level: Some generators can be noisy, which can be a concern, especially in residential areas or events. Check the generator’s noise level specifications, and if noise is a concern, opt for a quieter model.
      5. Portability: Depending on your needs, you may require a portable generator that can be easily moved to different locations. Consider the generator’s size, weight, and the presence of handles or wheels for mobility.
      6. Voltage Compatibility: Ensure the generator provides the required voltage for your equipment or appliances. Some generators have multiple outlets with different voltage options.
      7. Rental Terms and Costs: Understand the rental terms, including the daily or hourly rate, any delivery or pickup fees, and the deposit or insurance requirements. Compare prices and terms from different rental companies to get the best deal.
      8. Maintenance and Support: Inquire about maintenance requirements during your rental period. Determine if the rental company provides support, such as fuel delivery, maintenance services, or troubleshooting assistance.
      9. Backup Generator: Consider whether you need a backup generator in case the primary one fails. Discuss this with the rental company and explore their options for backup generators.
      10. Installation and Safety: Ensure that you or the rental company have the necessary expertise to install and operate the generator safely. Follow all safety guidelines, including proper grounding and ventilation.
      11. Environmental Regulations: Check local regulations and environmental standards for generator emissions, especially if you’re renting in an urban or environmentally sensitive area. Some places have restrictions on the use of certain types of generators.
      12. Test Run: Before committing to a rental, ask if you can test run the generator to ensure it meets your requirements and is in proper working condition.
      13. Fuel Supply: Confirm that you have access to an adequate and safe fuel supply for the generator. Make arrangements for refueling if necessary.
      14. Emergency Shutdown: Familiarise yourself with the generator’s emergency shutdown procedures in case of any issues or safety concerns.
      15. Rental Agreement: Read and understand the rental agreement thoroughly, including terms and conditions, responsibilities, and any penalties for misuse or damage.

      By considering these factors and thoroughly researching your generator rental options, you can select the right generator to meet your power needs and ensure a smooth and reliable power supply for your project or event. By keeping these three things in mind, you can be sure to find the best generator rental company for your needs.

      Generator Rental for Businesses

      A power cut can be a major inconvenience. But for businesses, a power outage can mean lost revenue and productivity. That’s why it’s important to have a plan in place for how to deal with a power outage. Rental Generators can provide you with the power you need to keep your business running. Shenton Group can offer bespoke rental packages, and we will investigate the best solution for your needs, removing the guesswork.

      What Size Generator Do I Need?

      The size of the generator is important, as you don’t want to end up with a generator that is too small and won’t be able to power all of your appliances or one that is too big and will be too expensive to run.

      Below are some of the questions to consider to size your generator correctly:

      • Are you currently running off of a 3phase or 1phase supply?
      • What is the size of your mains incomer?
      • What is your power usage?
      • What do you want the generator to power/support?

      Generator Rental Considerations

      • The run time required of the generator
      • Do you have a fuel management/ strategy in place?
      • Where do you intend to locate the generator?

      You will also need to rent cables, accessories and spill kits; these elements typically form part of the generator rental package. There are many things to consider, so it is vital that you speak to a reputable generator company that can offer the support that you need.

      Disaster Recovery Planning For Businesses

      A generator is a key element of any disaster recovery plan. Generator rental can provide your business with the backup power it needs to keep operations running in the event of an outage.

      Creating a resilient strategy starts with understanding the risks your business faces. Once you have identified the potential hazards, you can begin to develop a plan that outlines how your business will continue to operate in the event of a disruption.

      Your disaster recovery plan should be tailored to your specific business needs and take into account the type of hazards you are likely to face. For example, if your business is located in an area that is prone to severe weather events, you will need to consider how you will maintain power during an outage.

      Download your FREE whitepaper to plan a resilient disaster recovery strategy, including a business continuity plan to get you started.

      Download Whitepaper

      Shenton Group’s Comprehensive Generator Rental Service

      Shenton Group has been working in the generator industry for over 40 years supporting commercial clients and offers a comprehensive generator rental service, which includes delivery, installation and maintenance.

      Our rental packages are bespoke, and we will investigate the best solution for your needs, removing the guesswork. Even if you are unsure of what you need, and how and where you can install it, our technical experts can advise you from start to finish ensuring you get the correct support for your requirements, and providing complete peace of mind.

      Protect Yourself Against Power Outages

      Shenton Group offers a complete generator rental service to commercial clients. So if you’re an organisation that needs to keep critical operations running, renting a diesel generator is a good option to consider, but don’t leave it till the last minute.

      To rent a generator or to discuss how you can protect your business from power outages this winter, speak to the UK’s Leading Technical Experts today!

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      The complete generator maintenance checklist – how to keep your generator running for years to come.

      Uninterrupted, reliable power is vital for industrial operations. Even a brief disruption can slam the brakes on production or service, leading to costly downtime. That’s why so many industries rely on generators and rigorous maintenance protocols—keeping these important machines primed for action when it counts. Keep your generator running like a champ with our helpful checklists on how to maintain a generator! This blog will outline a comprehensive generator maintenance checklist to guide users in ensuring their equipment’s optimal performance and safety.

      Preventive Generator Maintenance Checklist

      Proper preventive maintenance can extend the lifespan of a backup generator to 20 years or beyond. Naturally, the longevity also hinges on its frequency of use. With minimal usage, as little as 26 hours per year, and regular weekly exercises of just half an hour, your generator could even go the distance without experiencing any outages.

      Daily Generator Maintenance Checklist

      These basic checks serve to ensure your generator is operating smoothly:

      • Start your generator to ensure normal functioning.
      • Verify that no alarms or warning lights have been triggered.

      For generators that run constantly, these daily checks are essential for peace of mind. However, if your generator operates intermittently, these steps may not be required as frequently.

      Weekly Generator Maintenance Checklist

      Depending on how often you perform checks, these checks can be a breeze, but they’re still super helpful to keep things running like a charm.

      • Peek at those fuel levels and top up the tank if needed.
      • Check for any sneaky fluid leaks.
      • Take a quick visual sweep to make sure everything’s in shipshape condition.
      • Give it a no-load workout with an automatic transfer switch (ATS) exercise cycle.
      • Open and close the circuit breaker to check it is operating as you would expect.

      Bi-annual Generator Maintenance Checklist

      • For some of these checks, you may want to consult our technical experts who will be able to assist.
      • Clean up those battery terminals while checking out the battery electrolyte levels.
      • While you’re there, check the battery cables and their connections.
      • Vigilantly inspect the fan belt.
      • Perform a lubrication system check-up including oil leaks, system hoses and connectors.
      • Give the electrical system and wiring a once-over.
      • Check the exhaust system, muffler and exhaust pipe.
      • Clear the area around your generator and remove any debris.

      Don’t put it off! When it comes to these checks, our technical experts are here to assist you.

      Annual Generator Maintenance Checklist

      Ensure a generator maintenance professional completes this annual generator maintenance checklist. We’ll whip out our expert tools, do thorough checks, and fix any hiccups!

      • It’s time to change the oil and filter to give your generator a boost.
      • Replace those air and fuel filters for a clean and smooth performance.
      • Change out the spark plugs.
      • Then, check coolant concentration.
      • Clean it up the alternator.
      • Carry out load bank testing.

      We’ll put your generator to the ultimate test and ensure it’s a powerhouse with a functional test!

      Get your generator in tip-top condition with our weekly, monthly, and annual maintenance checklists! Give it the TLC it requires, and in return, it’ll give you years of safety, security, and endless peace of mind.

      Reach out to one of our technical experts today.

      Generator Maintenance FAQ’s

      What maintenance is required on a generator?

      To keep your generator in tip-top shape and roaring with power, regular maintenance of the different parts is required. Some of these tasks include changing its oil and swapping out the full-flow oil filter for a fresh one. Giving the radiator some TLC by emptying, flushing, and refilling it. Keeping the fuel flowing by changing the fuel filter and making sure the air stays clean by swapping out the air filter. These are just a few of the maintenance steps – there’s more generator maintenance tips in our handy checklists.

      How often do generators need to be serviced?

      Is it time to give your generator some treatment? Aim for a full-service either annually or after it’s clocked 1,000 hours – whichever happens first. Our professional service includes 250 hour and 500-hour checkups too. We’ll make sure your generator is working perfectly, changing oil and filter, and swapping out fuel lines as needed. 

      What is the maintenance schedule for diesel generators?

      When it comes to your diesel generator, the recommended servicing frequencies depend on its hard work and running time. As a rule of thumb, shoot for a full inspection and service every 6 months or at around 400 hours of running time. It’s the ultimate rule for keeping your generator happy, healthy, and ready to power through any challenge. To find out more, check out our blog on diesel generator maintenance.

      Why Choose Shenton Group?

      Here at Shenton, we have the knowledge and expertise of the generator industry to understand the challenges you are facing and how best to support them.

      With nationwide coverage and 24/7 emergency response, you can rest assured that you and your equipment will be fully supported. Working with Shenton Group will ensure that you get the correct equipment for the application. If you would like to find out more about the industries we support, please visit out case study page.

      We also have a trusted reputation of being one of the leading suppliers of rental generators in the UK, we have supplied generators to some of the biggest institutions in the country and we are committed to upholding the highest standards of service. We pride ourselves on our quick response times, especially during emergencies, to ensure your business or project gets the attention it needs to ensure full functionality.

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      A Guide to Generator Hire

      Companies often need to hire a generator to keep their business operational. The reasons for renting a generator are varied, ranging from a scheduled shutdown, the aftermath of floods, fire and power outages to powering up equipment for a show or exhibition. Generator rental companies offer short-medium term solutions for such situations, providing companies with the necessary power generation and equipment to ensure uninterrupted operations.

      By the end of this guide, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of generator rentals, allowing you to make informed decisions for your power needs. Whether it’s for a special event, construction project, or emergency preparedness, renting a generator can offer a convenient and reliable solution. Stay tuned for more insightful articles and tips in our generator rental blog!

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      What are the Differences between High-Voltage, Medium-Voltage, and Low-Voltage Switchgear? And Which Type Do You Need?

      Switchgear is an essential part of any electrical system, especially in generator power and in commercial settings. But what exactly is Switchgear and what voltages are there? This blog aims to help explain what switchgear is, what the difference between the voltage options is, and help you work out what voltage switchgear you need for your generator.

      Firstly, let’s talk about what switchgear is.

      What is Switchgear?

      Switchgear makes up an integral part of an electrical power system. The term switchgear is a broad term that describes a range of switching devices that all complete a common purpose: controlling, protecting, and isolating power systems. This switchgear definition can be extended to include devices that regulate and meter a power system, circuit breakers and similar technology. Basically, switchgear are the components that interrupt a power supply in the event of a problem.

      How Does Switchgear Work?

      As mentioned above, electrical switchgear has three basic functions, electrical protection, electrical isolation, and control. Switchgear power systems are a combination of electrical disconnects that provide the isolation of electrical equipment to prevent damage in the event of a power surge. Circuits can only handle a certain amount of electricity, and if too much of it flows through, the wiring may become too hot. This could cause problems on crucial electrical components or even start fires. An efficient switchgear will activate in the event of an electrical surge, automatically interrupting the flow of power and safeguarding the electrical systems. De-energizing equipment for safe testing, maintenance, and fault-clearing are other uses for switchgear.

      What are examples of Switchgear Components?

      Switchgears are made using components that disconnect power to help protect any connected equipment from the risk of an electrical overload. Switchgear can include multiple components, including:

      • Fuses
      • Switches
      • Relays
      • Isolators,
      • Circuit breakers
      • Lightning arresters

      What are the Different Switchgear Types?

      Switchgear comes in three distinct types, which are three voltage levels:

      • LV (Low voltage)
      • MV (Medium voltage)
      • HV (High voltage).

      Each type of switchgear has a different voltage level for different applications, but what are the differences between high-voltage, medium voltage and low voltage?

      what are switchgears

      What is the difference between LV, MV and HV switchgear?

      The three types are distinguished by their varying voltage levels, which is the primary difference between them. But what are the three different voltages used for?

      Let’s start with low voltage switchgear first.

      Low Voltage Switchgear

      Low-voltage switchgear can control systems up to 1kV in voltage. These are frequently used in a variety of industries and are typically found on the low-voltage sides of power-distribution transformers.

      Medium-Voltage Switchgear

      Systems with voltages between 1kV and 35kV use medium-voltage switchgear. This switchgear is frequently used in systems that include transmission and distribution lines, generators, feeder circuits, and motors.

      High-Voltage Switchgear

      Lastly, we have high voltage switchgear. A high-voltage switchgear system is one that can manage between 35 kV and 230kV of voltage. These breakers frequently have improved safety features because they are made for high-voltage use.

      What Switchgear type do you need?

      The type or voltage switchgear systems you need ultimately depends on the power load you have. If you already have switchgear and need assistance with maintenance, the team at Shenton Group performs visual inspections, cleanings, and lubrications for LV switchgear as part of annual maintenance work or one-time servicing.

      For more information or to discuss ongoing maintenance services, get in touch with our team.

      For efficient power distribution in industrial setups, switchgear systems are frequently used to protect connected technology from damage and interrupting the end user. Shenton Group have  carried out a low voltage switchgear project in London Docklands and another in Liverpool for a telecoms company. If you require any support, advice or are keen to start a project involving switchgear equipment, or specialist switchgear systems, then get in touch with us today and we will be glad to help.

      Top 5 Weekly Routine Checks for Looking After Your Generator!

      Even the very best power generators need regular maintenance to guarantee peak performance. Generators need to be serviced by trained engineers to ensure they are serviced correctly, remain functional, and all the components and equipment are maintained and repaired if necessary.

      However, between service visits, there are 5 checks you can do onsite to help ensure the smooth running of your generator and to spot any repairs that are needed before they become a problem.

      What to Check on a Generator

      Here are our top five tips featured on our weekly generator maintenance checklist:

      1 – Check Coolant & Oil Levels

      The first check that will be beneficial to the running of your backup or prime power generator is checking the fluid levels, which include the coolant and oil. Once you have checked the level to ensure it is adequate, and topped it up if required, it is a good idea to visually check for any leaks or anything that looks abnormal.

      Checking the diesel or petrol tank is also a good idea to ensure you don’t need the fuel polishing or replacing.

      2 – Check Battery Voltage 

      The second check to make within your weekly routine is the battery voltage. The process for this is controller specific, so please contact us and we can send you a “how-to-guide” for your specific controller to help you complete your battery voltage check effectively, reducing the likelihood of battery failure or damage.

      3 – Check Generator Attenuator & Exhausts

      The third step in your weekly routine generator checks and onsite servicing is checking that the attenuator and exhausts are clear of any blockages. These blockages can be caused by an accumulation of dust, or even a bird’s nest and other items, so a check for any sign of anything accumulating to help prolong the life and function of your generator. 

      4 – Test Run Offload

      The fourth step is to run a weekly test run offload for a duration of five minutes. Running the generator with no electrical load can ensure that it starts successfully without affecting business operations. This is to ensure that the generator can start up before switching over to generator power from the main supply.

      5 – Check Generator Bodywork 

      Lastly, the fifth step is to check the generator’s bodywork for any signs of rusting or damage, and attend to any repairs or damaged parts to ensure the generator runs safely in between servicing.

      running your generator

      If you aren’t sure how often you should test your generator or run generator maintenance, we can help. We advise that you perform these initial checks on your power generator weekly. This inspection can be vital to supporting your power supply and making sure it stays reliable, with valuable insight into the health of your generator.

      Trying to undertake more advanced maintenance work is always a risk if you are not qualified. But if you want to be more hands-on with your generator, we recommend a HawkEye2 remote monitoring contract.

      HawkEye2 offers added protection through 24/7 remote monitoring and can be used with all makes and sizes of standby generators. Remote monitoring ensures any issues are flagged up and rectified before your hour of need – not during it. Sometimes you won’t even have to wait for an engineer to arrive.

      Once a week, HawkEye2 automatically starts your generator and runs it for 10 minutes, checking vital operating parameters such as voltage, frequency, oil and water temperature, battery condition, emergency stop, and fuel levels. After the test, a full condition report is sent to Shenton Group’s HawkEye2 monitoring centre. You can also receive SMS or voicemail reports straight to your phone.

      HawkeEye 2 in a nutshell:

      • Fully-automatic operation 24/7
      • Continuous monitoring of generator conditions
      • Notification of mains failure and generator operation
      • Confirmation of a successful test run
      • Automatic low fuel warning.

      When it comes to the physical maintenance and repair work on your generator, we have strategically placed depots across the UK and a nationwide network of technical engineers and support staff to provide help with whatever you need.

      We promise the highest standards of UPS and power generator servicing, testing, generator repair, maintenance, and emergency response to ensure your diesel generator reliability. If you aren’t sure how to repair a generator, or if you need to know how to check generator oil levels or the battery voltage, please give us a call.

      For more information on our generator maintenance support and generator servicing, get in contact today.

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      What is Fuel Polishing?

      As an organic compound, diesel fuel is liable to deteriorate over the natural course of time. In doing so, it gradually leaves sediment in a diesel generator’s tank. Once the diesel stored in fuel tanks deteriorates and is left for long periods, it can become contaminated which will have a negative impact on a diesel generator. In worst-case scenarios, this can cause system failures which could be disastrous, especially for an emergency backup generator.

      Fuel polishing is a cleaning process that removes any harmful sediment and bacterium in your generator fuel tank which, if not eliminated, can have a detrimental impact on your backup power system. A fuel polish involves removing the diesel from the storage tank, filtering it, removing the redundant fuel, and then feeding the remaining clean fuel back into the tank.

      Fuel polishing also helps your generators to run more efficiently, as with the cleaner fuel you will use less, therefore, saving you money and risking fewer breakdowns.

      How a Fuel Polishing System Works

      At the bottom of an unchecked fuel tank, there is likely to be a build-up of damaging sludge, which can cause issues for different parts of your generator as it runs through the system. Water and bacteria build up over time because of natural processes, contaminating your fuel and rendering it unfit for use. The solution to prevent this is to filter the diesel using a fuel polishing system.

      Some generators are fitted with their own fuel polisher and gauge. The benefit of this is the fuel is cycled and cleaned automatically. This means you do not need to wait for an engineer to come out, you save money on your maintenance plan, and you further decrease the chances of contaminated fuel. Some of our clients find this option very useful, as we can fit fuel polishers to new and existing generators, subject to conditions on-site.

      For those that don’t have a fitted fuel polisher, Shenton Group provides a professional fuel polishing service that comes to you and ensures your fuel is cleaned safely without damaging the environment.

      Shenton Group’s Fuel Polishing Process

      1. The fuel is carefully extracted and filtered via a series of processes to clean and remove any particle or bacterial contamination.
      2. The tank is also cleaned, and any solids or debris items are taken out.
      3. Before the clean fuel goes back into the tank, it is tested to ensure it conforms to EN590 regulations and ISO4406 levels.
      4. The clean fuel is then treated with a chemical biocide to slow future bacterial growth.
      5. The remaining contaminated fuel is ethically disposed of.

      How Important Is Diesel Polishing for the Upkeep of a Generator?

      Backup generators are vital and expensive pieces of equipment. It is certainly in the best interest of your operation to keep on top of regular maintenance and servicing in order to prolong the life of the generator and keep your power supply secure.

      Fuel polishing can prevent engine breakdown, fuel starvation, blocked filtration systems, filters, and water or any other contaminant entering your generator. Contaminated fuel will cause your generator to fail and the cost of replacing parts can be expensive. Fuel polishing also prevents the need to replace the entire fuel supply in the tank, an expensive and unnecessary outlay.

      Key Benefits of Fuel Polishing

      When fuel becomes contaminated and is left too long without polishing, the whole fuel supply in the tank might need to be removed and disposed of at a great cost. This is hugely wasteful and environmentally damaging. It is best to continuously maintain your fuel supply to avoid having to dispose of waste fuel.

      A more responsible and cost-effective approach would be to make use of a maintenance contract and regularly schedule fuel polishing for your fuel system, which is less expensive and far better for the environment.

      • Fuel polishing will help prevent the build-up of sludge in your generator and at the bottom of the tank, and will also prevent water from entering the generator.
      • Prevents clogged fuel filters and pistons and removes all traces of contamination present in the fuel, re-optimising it for your gas tank.
      • Depending on your generator set-up, diesel fuel polishing systems can be connected to your fuel supply and can run the filtration process while causing no disruption to your day-to-day operations, so your contingency power supply can continue to be called upon at any given moment.

      Does My Diesel Supply Need Polishing?

      Depending on your generator set-up, diesel fuel polishing systems can be connected to your fuel supply and can run the filtration process while causing no disruption to your day-to-day operations, so your contingency power supply can continue to be called upon at any given moment.

      A fuel polishing control panel for a diesel power generator

      How Often Should Fuel Be Polished?

      This depends on each individual generator set-up, but in the main, for a backup power system, the stored fuel should be tested at least once a year. The results of the sampling will dictate whether the fuel needs to be polished or not.

      A maintenance plan with a professional supplier will ensure your equipment and fuel will be monitored by experts who will also schedule visits to take care of the upkeep of your generator, diesel tank, and fuel quality.

      Shenton Group gives you the option of including the cost of fuel polishing as part of your maintenance contract. We routinely check the generator fuel every 12 months and run a detailed report to establish if fuel polishing is required. This is critical for the protection of your asset and the reliability of your backup power system.

      With the involvement of specialist equipment, it is understandable that some clients may initially feel the process of fuel polishing to be pricey; however, it is a far more cost-effective route than the removal and replacement of an entire batch of fuel and disposal of the old contaminated batch.

      Most importantly, you will increase the life span of your generator and avoid breakdowns, which again can be costly for you and your operation. For example, if you run a food chilling warehouse and the chillers lose power, that could cost thousands of pounds and damage the business’s reputation. Nobody needs that headache! A relatively quick fuel polishing and tank cleaning service can ensure your generator doesn’t break down and keeps your fuel high-quality.

      Shenton Group Fuel Polishing and Maintenance Services

      Concerned about the quality of fuel in your generator system? Unsure of when the fuel was last polished? Give our team a call or contact us on our website.

      We are an industry-leading organisation, providing support contracts to help our clients maintain their backup power systems all over the country. We give our clients confidence that their generators are primed and ready to support at any given moment.

      For more information on our services or the cost of our fuel polishing service, get in contact today to speak to one of our technical experts.

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