INSTALLING A DIESEL GENERATOR
In narrowboats, engine room space is probably too limited to fit a diesel generator, but many small sets lend themselves to being installed under bunks or seats. They generally come in compact acoustic housings. It’s important not to cool an inboard generator by keel-cooling. Keel cooling tanks for your main engine rely on water continually passing the hull to carry away the heat, which happens when you motor along the canal. A generator will normally be run when the boat is moored up, so the water outside the cooling tank is not moving. Using keel-cooling, at best you will lose efficiency by 15-20 per cent. At worst, the generator will continuously overheat. The best – only – way to cool an inboard diesel generator is with raw water from the canal. After passing through the engine, warmed water is injected into the exhaust (wet exhaust) or is piped over the side separately (dry exhaust).
Check the power, not just the name