How to build a cover for a generator

Written by lisabeth hughes
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How to build a cover for a generator
Insulated generator covers serve multiple purposes. (electrical box image by steve dimitriou from Fotolia.com)

Many people use generators as a source of backup power, and off-grid homes may use generators along with solar panels and wind power as the main source of energy. Most generator covers protect generators from the elements but do little to dampen the sound of a running generator. Generators can be noisy and irritating during prolonged use. Building an insulated cover for your generator can protect it from weather and corrosion, provide noise reduction and improve the appearance of your home generator.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 2-by-2-inch studs
  • Measuring tape
  • Circular saw
  • Carpenter's pencil
  • Carpenter's square
  • Hammer
  • 6-penny galvanised nails
  • 1/2 inch exterior plywood or soundboard
  • 1 1/2 inch rigid foam insulation
  • Vapour barrier
  • Staple gun
  • Staples
  • Utility knife
  • Vent
  • Hinges
  • Hook and eye latch
  • Drill
  • Wood drill bit
  • Exterior paint

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Measure your generator to determine how large the cover will be. The generator should fit easily inside the finished box with a few extra inches of space on each side.

  2. 2

    Measure and cut eight 2-by-2 studs to length, according to your desired dimensions.

  3. 3

    Lay one 2-by-2 flat on the ground and mark an "X" along it every 24 inches.

  4. 4

    Repeat Step 3 on another 2-by-2, using the same measurements so the markings match up when the two studs are placed together evenly.

  5. 5

    Place a 2-by-2 at each end of the first marked stud. This will be your bottom plate. Place a 2-by-2 at the centre of each "X."

  6. 6

    Nail the 2-by-2s onto the bottom plate from underneath. The nail should enter the bottom plate from the opposite side of the wall studs and penetrate the wall studs lengthwise.

  7. 7

    Place the other marked stud on top of the horizontal, nailed-in studs. Nail them together.

  8. 8

    Repeat steps 3-7 to create three more walls.

  9. 9

    Stand the walls upright and nail them together.

  10. 10

    Measure and cut the plywood to fit the walls. Cut a space in one plywood sheet the size of the vent. Make sure this space fits between the studs.

  11. 11

    Measure and cut the insulation to fit inside the box between the studs. Cut a space for the vent in one piece of insulation. Place insulation between the studs.

  12. 12

    Measure and cut the vapour barrier to fit the inside walls, covering the studs and the insulation completely. Do not cover the vent space. Staple the vapour barrier to the studs.

  13. 13

    Nail the vent on the exterior over the space in the plywood.

  14. 14

    Drill a hole in the wall facing the house to run the wiring through.

  15. 15

    Measure, cut and nail together four 2-by-2 studs to make a frame that fits on top of the box.

  16. 16

    Measure and nail the studs onto the frame, running one way, every 24 inches.

  17. 17

    Measure and cut the plywood to fit the top frame. Nail the plywood onto the studs.

  18. 18

    Measure and cut the insulation to fit inside the studs of the top of the box. Install the insulation.

  19. 19

    Measure and cut the vapour barrier to fit the top of the box. Staple it to the studs.

  20. 20

    Nail hinges onto the top of one wall and one side of the top to create a lid that lifts up for easy access and maintenance.

  21. 21

    Nail the hook and eye closure to the top of the opposite wall and the edge of the top.

  22. 22

    Paint the exterior if desired.

Tips and warnings

  • You can use screws and a drill instead of nails and a hammer if you like.
  • Use treated 2-by-2 studs for the bottom four studs for best results.
  • Insulation must fit tightly for maximum effectiveness.

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