People use kilowatts to select a generator, but what about BTUs?
How Many BTUs Is a 22kW Generator? 22kW amounts to 75,064 BTU/hr.
Laypeople rarely associate a generator’s power with BTUs. Some homeowners with air conditioners have seen the BTU in their unit’s manual. They occasionally use it to calculate the AC’s wattage. Otherwise, many people are content to ignore the BTU. Therefore, they don’t know how to find a generator’s BTU when the need arises.
How To Calculate BTU For A Generator?
CalculateMe makes these calculations unnecessary. They have a calculator that performs this task for you. Once you enter the kilowatts, the tool will automatically calculate the BTUs.
If you have watts instead of kilowatts, remember that one kilowatt equates to a thousand watts. Turn the watts into kilowatts before converting them to BTU. What if you prefer to calculate the BTUs yourself?
Keep this in mind: 1kW = 3412.142BTU. Therefore, multiplying 22kW by 3412.142 will give you the correct BTUs. You can also search for a BTU/kW chart online. These tables reveal the common kW ratings and their corresponding BTUs.
Find your generator’s kW in tables like the one Learn Metrics has published to determine the BTU. Confirm the accuracy of the information in those tables by doing your own calculations using the formula above.
Some manufacturers will include the BTU in the manual or the plate on the generator. If they don’t, find the model number and send it to the manufacturer. They will identify your model before revealing the BTU to you.
Why Do I Need To Know The BTU Of My Generator?
Everyone knows why the BTUs matter to the AC unit. This unit shows you the energy you will need to add or remove heat. It paints a clear picture of the air conditioner’s ability to heat and cool your home.
You don’t aim for the AC unit with the highest BTU because you may secure an expensive unit whose hefty price tag doesn’t justify the small space you want to cool. Many manufacturers will encourage you to determine the square footage of your home, the height of the ceilings, and the local climate before identifying a suitable BTU.
But what about the BTU of the generator? Why does the BTU of a generator matter? The Power Equipment Forum gave a partial answer to this question. One individual spoke of a situation where they wanted to connect a generator to their home’s propane supply.
The plumber they hired wanted the homeowner to first specify the BTU input. One of the answers on the forum revealed that the homeowner’s champion generator required a flow rate of 152,000BTU/hr (½ PSI).
This shows you the important role the BTU plays in selecting a suitable hose kit to link the generator and the tank.
BTU is short for ‘British Thermal Unit,’ a unit of measurement that techopedia defines as the amount of energy it takes to raise the temperature of a pound of water by one degree (F). While you find the BTU in many American and European nations, some countries prefer joules.
Fortunately, you can make conversions between the two if you remember that 1 BTU = 1055 joules.
The exact meaning of ‘BTU’ may vary depending on the device. For instance, in devices like computers, the unit reveals the heat output. Where generators are concerned, you can use the BTU to compare different energy sources.
Many organizations use physical units such as weight and volume to quantify fuel. For instance, large companies measure petroleum in barrels and natural gas in cubic feet. The US Energy Information Administration revealed that the United States consumes 7.22 billion barrels of petroleum and 30.29 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. The coal is 545.67 million short tons.
How do you compare barrels to cubic feet and short tons? You change them to BTUs, that is to say, 35.07 quadrillion BTU (Petroleum), 31.34 quadrillion BTU (Natural Gas), and 10.55 quadrillion BTU (Coal).
You can turn most fuel units to BTU, including cords (wood) and gallons (Diesel, Propane, Heating Oil, and Motor Gasoline).
According to Alternative Power, a 22kW generator can consume 9.7 cubic meters (Natural Gas). Using BTU in this scenario allows you to compare that 22kW generator to models that run on other fuel sources. This will show you how long those other models can remain in operation while carrying the same load as a 22kW generator that uses natural gas.
Simply put, BTU makes comparisons between generators with different fuel sources easier. Additionally, it can simplify the process of locating a suitable generator for an AC unit because many online resources have compiled tables showing the best generator for each BTU.
Consider the table Pick HVAC has published. It shows AC BTUs ranging from 5,000 to 24,000 and their corresponding generator sizes in watts.
What BTU Is Considered The Best For Generator?
There is no such thing as the best BTU for a generator. Your selection will depend on your needs. Consider the following:
First of all, most people use kilowatts to select the generator, not the BTU. You identify a suitable kW by getting your home’s total load size. Make a list of all your appliances and add their watts together. The manufacturer puts this information on the silver nameplate.
Turn the watts into kW. Some people will go the extra mile and convert kW to kVA. According to Power Electrics, a generator’s apparent power is measured in kilo-volt amperes. You divide the kW by the power factor to get kVA. Multiplying kVA by the power factor will give you the kilowatts.
2). Generator VS Load
You cannot match the generator size to the load size. The generator size should be 10 or 20 percent larger. This gives the generator room to breathe in case of a surge.
Devices such as air conditioners with a BTU rating will also include a kW rating. Therefore, you can compare the kW of the AC unit to the generator size to determine whether or not your chosen generator is a suitable match for the air conditioner.
If you can only see the BTU, change the BTUs to kilowatts by multiplying the BTU by 0.000293. Again, the load size will determine the generator’s BTU. There is no best BTU for generators.
4). Starting Load
Don’t forget to account for the starting load. Some appliances use more power when they start. For instance, according to WPower Products, an air compressor with a running wattage of 2000W will use 4,000 watts when it starts.
Many generators have mechanisms that accommodate the starting load. If yours doesn’t, it will overload when the air compressor starts.