View Poll Results: What would you pay to make your generator near silent?
I think honda and yamaha's are quiet enough - I have no issue running them all night in a campground 5 19.23%
I would pay up to $200 to reduce noise to near silent levels (35db) 12 46.15%
I would pay up to $500 to reduce noise to near silent 5 19.23%
I would pay more than $500 to reduce noise to near silent 4 15.38%
Voters: 26. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-15-2011, 12:49 PM   #1
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How much would you pay for a dead silent (or close) generator

Well we all know that honda and yamaha generators are fairly quiet - around the 58 db range. But if you have ever gone tent camping in a campground with RV's/trailers you know that even these quiet generators create quite a bit of noise. Ideally - generators would run at about 35db in my opinion, which would allow people to run them at night without other campers really even hearing them at all. I can think of several instances where this would be nice - running AC, CPAP/Oxygen machines etc.

So my question is, what would you be willing to pay to lower your honda or yamaha generator to the 35db range?
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:04 PM   #2
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35db is 1/250th of 58db. 52db would reduce the perceived volume to 1/4...
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:14 PM   #3
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Much of the outrage over people running generators in tent-oriented campgrounds is that there are better alternatives in most cases. With the notable exception of Yellowstone and a few other unusually high-traffic areas, there is always either:

a) a remote location where noise is not a factor

-or-

b) a suitable nearby campsite with electricity.

When people are running generators overnight near other people's tents it is usually either to run the air conditioning or out of ignorance or a lack of preparation. It's quite practical to run a CPAP from an inverter provided that reasonable battery capacity is available. Most air conditioners have an outside noise level well above 35 dB(A) so I'm not sure what the point is behind a generator that is appreciably quieter than that. In fact other equipment like vent fans and the furnace will typically be well above 35 db(A).
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:17 PM   #4
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For perspective, the HVAC system in my office keeps the noise level at 55 to 60 db. It annoys me sometimes, but it's not terrible. I'm sitting right under the vent. It drops to 45-50 if I take 3 steps away, which is still closer than someone else would be to a generator.

35 db is really quiet. I'm not sure how feasible that is as a goal. I wonder how much that would cost.

I will be interested in your responses.
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:27 PM   #5
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just a thought here...how much would a 3 sided box ,with a lid on it work to silence genny ?
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:39 PM   #6
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rollerboy View Post
just a thought here...how much would a 3 sided box ,with a lid on it work to silence genny ?
That approach tends to lead to overheating and poor engine performance.

It interferes with cooling and causes exhaust gas to recirculate, leading to an overly rich mixture.
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Old 06-15-2011, 01:57 PM   #8
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I finally found one place that had prices.

(Ever notice how things like this almost never have prices, just a place to give them your information for a quote? Now I sound like Andy Rooney )

According to this site Hydrogen & fuel-cell european megastore a Powerbox GreenHub 2000 is available for 12.500,00 €, or about $17,723. For a little more power, you might consider the Powercell GreenHub 3000 for 16.990,00 €—$24,088.

There's one answer, anyway.
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Old 06-15-2011, 02:16 PM   #9
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35 db is almost as quiet as an inverter!

Probably not what you meant.
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Old 06-15-2011, 02:33 PM   #10
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just a thought here...how much would a 3 sided box ,with a lid on it work to silence genny ?
My wife bitched about the noise from a 10 HP Honda irrigation pump, so I built a box as described above and almost ruined the engine due to the heat and lack of air flow. Caught it just in time.
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Old 06-15-2011, 02:46 PM   #11
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I Figured if the box was large enough,but I see your point....
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Old 06-15-2011, 02:53 PM   #12
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Much of the outrage over people running generators in tent-oriented campgrounds is that there are better alternatives in most cases. With the notable exception of Yellowstone and a few other unusually high-traffic areas, there is always either:

a) a remote location where noise is not a factor

-or-

b) a suitable nearby campsite with electricity.

When people are running generators overnight near other people's tents it is usually either to run the air conditioning or out of ignorance or a lack of preparation. It's quite practical to run a CPAP from an inverter provided that reasonable battery capacity is available. Most air conditioners have an outside noise level well above 35 dB(A) so I'm not sure what the point is behind a generator that is appreciably quieter than that. In fact other equipment like vent fans and the furnace will typically be well above 35 db(A).
What it comes down to is this - I was tent camping with my dad and he has to have oxygen at night. He built a box to try to silence his honda generator, but it wasn't nearly quiet enough for the campground even with the box, and heat built up even with the computer fans he was running causing performance and noise issues. He ended up suffering through the night as the rangers wouldn't allow him to run the generator. I also have to run oxygen myself when I am at altitude (altitude enduced sleep apnea). Many concentrators pull a lot of amps - which would drain a large bank of batteries quickly. I have researched options for concentrators, and there are a few which run on low power, but they are very expensive and often not covered by insurance if you already have a home unit.

Besides that - I have gone camping numerous times where RV'er are running their generators until 10pm. Even when they are running them during reasonable hours or during the day, they are still distracting and annoying - and they ruin the outdoor experience. These are not isolated incidents of people being occasionally rude or unprepared. It's just a simple fact that people like to "take it with them" without compromise - and they want to run their AC, their LCD, and their microwave. Batteries wont cut it for these obviously. I myself have never purchased a generator, because even if I am boondocking I don't want to listen to my own generator.

With that said - good point on the AC being louder than 35db. I run fans myself, but it would obviously be a moot point to silence a generator down to 35db if other equipment is running louder.

35db is probably unrealistic. But 40db might be attainable, and I am considering designing something that could reduce sound levels to this amount. Just curious how important this is to others besides myself.
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Old 06-15-2011, 02:55 PM   #13
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just a thought here...how much would a 3 sided box ,with a lid on it work to silence genny ?
Funny you mention that...I run our 2000i in a three man tent, and get virtually no noise complaints, out of sight out of mind. (ears)
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Old 06-15-2011, 02:58 PM   #14
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We have never camped in a public campground that allows running generators all night long. If we were boon docking that would be possible I supposed, but then so would be the option to locate campsites further away if you didn't want any noise.
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