A generator should be large and powerful enough to handle a 5 ton air conditioner for producing consistent cool air on summer days.
So before planning for a generator, you must learn what size generator to run 5 ton ac unit for steady power.
The guide will also provide information on determining generator size for certain ACs as well as other important factors.
What Size Generator To Run 5 Ton AC Unit?
To run a 5 ton AC unit, a generator with at least 10,000 running watts and 12,000 starting watts is essential. During startup, the AC consumes 10,000 watts, which accounts for the unit’s peak power demand of around 6,000 watts.
Generator Size Chart To Run 5 Ton AC Unit
|Size||AC Unit||Whole House Generator||Recommended Generator|
|Minimum||5 ton||15kW||DuroMax Gas Powered 15000 Watt Electric Start Portable Generator|
|Perfect||5 ton||20kW||Westinghouse 20000 Rated Gas Watts Powered Portable Generator|
|Maximum||5 ton||25kW||Generac 25 kW Liquid-Cooled Single Phase Standby Generator|
Different Types of Generators Suitable for a 5 Ton AC Unit
Here are some of the most common types of generators that can run a 5 ton AC unit:
Portable generators are small and lightweight generators that can be easily moved from one place to another.
They are ideal for camping trips or emergency situations where you need temporary power. They run on gasoline or propane and have limited fuel capacity and run time.
They are also noisy and produce exhaust fumes that can be harmful if not vented properly.
Inverter generators are a type of portable generator that uses advanced technology to produce clean and stable power that is suitable for sensitive electronics.
They are quieter and more fuel-efficient than conventional portable generators.
They also have features such as variable speed control and parallel capability that allow them to adjust their output according to the load demand and connect with other inverter generators to increase their power.
Standby generators are large and permanent generators that are installed outside your home or business and connected to your electrical panel.
They are designed to provide backup power automatically in case of a power outage.
They usually run on natural gas or liquid propane and have large fuel tanks and long run times. They are also quiet and produce minimal emissions.
Diesel generators are a type of standby generators that run on diesel fuel instead of natural gas or liquid propane.
Diesel generators are more durable and efficient than gas generators and can provide more power for longer periods of time.
They are also less flammable and safer to store than gas generators. As well as being noisier and polluting, diesel generators require more maintenance and fuel storage.
Solar generators are a type of renewable energy generator that uses solar panels to capture sunlight and convert it into electricity.
Solar generators are eco-friendly and cost-effective in the long run as they do not require any fuel or produce any emissions.
They are also silent and easy to operate. Solar generators are also dependent on the weather and the sun’s availability.
They also require batteries and inverters to store and regulate the power output.
How to Calculate the Right Generator Size for a 5 Ton AC Unit?
To calculate the right generator size for a 5 ton AC unit, you need to follow these steps:
Find out the running and starting power of your 5 ton AC unit.
You can check the manufacturer’s specifications or use an online calculator to estimate the power requirements based on the BTU rating, EER rating, voltage, and current of your AC unit.
Find out the running and starting power of other devices that you want to power with the same generator.
You can check the labels or manuals of your devices or use an online calculator to estimate the power requirements based on the wattage, voltage, and current of your devices.
Add up the running and starting power of all your devices to get the total power demand of your load.
Choose a generator size that can provide at least the total running power and the total starting power of your load with some margin for error.
You can use a table chart or an online calculator to compare different generator sizes and their power output.
Consider other factors that may affect your generator size selection, such as fuel efficiency, location, climate, backup duration, budget, portability, noise, regulations, etc.
Factors Influencing Generator Size Selection for a 5 Ton AC Unit
Here are some of the most important factors that you need to consider before buying a generator:
Peak Power Demand of AC
The peak power demand of your AC unit is the maximum amount of power that it needs when it first starts up or when it operates at full capacity.
The peak power demand is usually higher than the running power demand and can cause a voltage drop or a circuit breaker trip if your generator cannot handle it.
Therefore, you need to choose a generator that can provide enough starting or surge power for your AC unit without compromising its performance or safety.
Continuous Running Power
The continuous running power is the average amount of power that your AC unit needs when it runs normally or at partial capacity.
The continuous running power is usually lower than the peak power demand but still significant enough to affect your generator’s fuel consumption and run time.
Therefore, you need to choose a generator that can provide enough rated or continuous power for your AC unit without wasting fuel or running out of juice.
The fuel efficiency of your generator is the ratio between the amount of fuel consumed and the amount of electricity produced by your generator.
The fuel efficiency depends on factors such as the type, quality, and quantity of fuel used, the load demand, the ambient temperature, the altitude, etc.
The higher the fuel efficiency, the lower the fuel cost and environmental impact of your generator.
Therefore, you need to choose a generator that has high fuel efficiency for your AC unit and other devices.
Location and Climate Considerations
The location and climate where you plan to use your generator can affect its performance and durability.
Factors such as high temperature, high humidity, high altitude, dust, salt, rain, snow, etc., can reduce your generator’s output, efficiency, cooling capacity, lifespan, etc.
You need to choose a generator that is suitable for your location and climate conditions and has features such as protection from weather elements, ventilation systems, air filters, etc.
Backup Duration Needed
When a power outage occurs or you wish to operate remotely, the backup duration is how long you want your generator to provide power for your AC unit and other devices.
Power outages vary in frequency and duration, fuel availability and accessibility, criticality and priority of your devices, etc.
Generator size and fuel capacity increase with backup duration. You need a generator that can run your AC unit and other devices without running out of fuel.
Generator’s Fuel Tank Capacity
You can store and use fuel at a time in your generator’s fuel tank. The larger the fuel tank capacity, the longer the run time and the lower the fuel consumption and refueling frequency.
The fuel tank capacity also affects your generator’s runtime, fuel consumption, and refueling frequency.
It may be harder to transport and store a larger generator with a larger fuel tank capacity.
To balance portability and run time, choose a generator with an optimal fuel tank capacity for your AC unit.
Buying and maintaining a generator for your AC unit and other devices is a budgetary consideration.
Factors such as generator size, type, brand, quality, features, warranty, installation, maintenance, fuel costs, etc., influence budgetary considerations.
Quality and performance are better with higher budgetary considerations.
Choose a generator that fits your budget, offers the most value for money, and fits your budget as well.
Portability and Storage
Whether a generator is portable and storageable depends on its size, weight, design, wheels, handles, etc., when it is not in use.
Portable generators are easier to transport and store when they have high portability and storage.
Their power output and run time may be lower if they are smaller and lighter. Choose a portable generator that is easy to store and powerful enough to run your AC unit.
Noise Levels and Restrictions
During operation, your generator generates a certain amount of noise, which is governed or limited by regulations.
Several factors affect generator noise levels, including size, type, engine speed, mufflers, enclosures, etc.
If you have a low noise generator, you may not be able to run your AC or other devices.
Your generator’s noise level depends on its location, time of day, distance from neighbors, etc.
A stricter noise restriction limits generator options. You should choose a generator that meets your area’s noise restrictions or a soundproof generator.
Local Regulations and Warranty Terms
Local regulations and warranty terms govern how your generator is installed, operated, maintained, and repaired.
To operate generators properly, local regulations must be followed. You must obtain the necessary permits or licenses or use a generator that meets local regulations.
You are better protected against generator defects if the generator manufacturer or seller offers a longer and more comprehensive warranty.
In order to avoid voiding your warranty, you should choose a generator that has good warranty terms and conditions and follow them carefully.
Portable vs Whole House Generators
Choosing the right generator can be a daunting task, with many factors to consider. Two popular options are portable and whole-house generators.
Portable generators are designed to be moved from one location to another and are commonly used to provide power during outdoor activities or to power small appliances during power outages.
Here are some benefits and drawbacks of portable generators:
Easy to move around:
Portable generators are designed to be moved around with ease, making them ideal for outdoor activities or for powering appliances in different locations.
Portable generators are generally less expensive than whole-house generators, making them an accessible option for those on a tight budget.
Easy to maintain:
Portable generators are easy to maintain, and parts are readily available, making repairs simple and affordable.
Limited power output: Portable generators have limited power output and can only power a few appliances at a time.
Portable generators can be noisy, which can be a concern for those living in close proximity to neighbors.
Portable generators require manual operation, which means you need to start and stop the generator yourself.
Whole House Generators:
Whole-house generators, as the name suggests, are designed to power your entire home during power outages.
These generators are permanently installed and run on natural gas or propane. Here are some benefits and drawbacks of whole-house generators:
Whole-house generators are automatic and turn on automatically when the power goes out, providing uninterrupted power.
High power output:
Whole-house generators can power your entire home, including heating and cooling systems, refrigerators, and other appliances.
Whole-house generators are typically quieter than portable generators.
Whole-house generators are more expensive than portable generators and require professional installation.
Whole-house generators require professional maintenance, which can add to the cost.
Whole-house generators are permanently installed and cannot be moved, limiting their use to your home.
FAQs on What Size Generator To Run 5 Ton AC Unit
How Many Watts Require Running A 5 Ton AC?
Generally, a 5 ton air conditioner with a 10 EER rating needs at least 6,000 W.
Why does AC unit size need more generator power?
Air conditioners require surge capacity at startup which momentarily spikes above running wattage.
Does the generator fuel type matter for AC?
Yes, opt for propane or natural gas whole house standby units to avoid gassing from gasoline and long runtimes needed for AC.
How often should generators be serviced for AC?
Standby generators should be professionally serviced annually, with oil changes every 200 hours when used for frequent AC power demand.
A 5 ton air conditioner is a standard size that needs lots of energy.
So learning what size generator for 5 ton ac unit will not only ensure consistent run time but also maintain longevity by operating the appliance properly.
Apart from this make sure you have enough fuel to keep the 5 ton ac running for desired time.