ESSENTIAL KIT - Diesel or Petrol Generator
True independence afloat only comes with the installation of a suitable sized generator. Once you have easily generated power available, at will, other systems such as large capacity water makers, water heating on demand and air conditioning can be fitted.
Used in conjunction with an Invertor/Charger the generator covers the higher demand or longer period needs.
Usually water cooled and mounted it their own sound box, the Genset is fairly quiet and unobtrusive. They require a separate diesel feed from the tank, a cooling water supply and exhaust overboard.
GenSets like to work hard so don't get too large a unit. They do require some additional wiring and switching to integrate them into the shore power and Inverter which, although not difficult, is best done by a qualified marine electrician.
My 5.25 Kva BetaMarine unit provides up to 23 Amps at 220vAC. It uses just over 1 litre of diesel per hour and with that I can cool the fridge right down, make 60 litres of fresh drinking water, charge the batteries, heat 35L of shower water and make plenty of cups of tea in the electric kettle.
Small petrol generators are quite common on small & medium sized cruising yachts.
They need a home on deck and of course petrol must never be stored below or even in deck lockers unless they have been explicitly designed for this purpose.
Petrol generators tend to have a quite small output between 750 and 2000 watts. They can be noisy especially for your downwind neighbour so please use them sparingly.
They simply plug into the shore power inlet so no extra wiring is necessary.