The Home of Diesel Generators

01829 863497

Noise and dB(A) in Diesel Generators

FW Power Guide

Common Sound Levels in dB(A)

How Noisy is a Diesel Generator?  This is unsuprisingly  a very common question we get asked and understandably so. Depending upon your needs noise can be a very important factor when looking to buy a generator.

We touch on Noise and dB(A) – and what it all means in our Generator Sizing and Installation Guide.  However having a comparrison of everyday common sounds to use can help visulise how much noise your generator will make.

There are two common terms when talking about generators that you will probably hear us mention: ‘silent’ and ‘open skid’.  The word silent is used for generators that have an acoustic canopy,  however this does not mean that the generator makes no noise at all and  the word ‘silent’ may be a little misleading. There are  various different types of canopies produced that can reduce the noise of a generator.  The most effective type of generator when it comes to reducing sound are called ‘whisper generators’,  a very high spec but be warned these comes with a much higher price tag. These type of generators are often used on TV and film sets where noise is a very important factor.

‘Open Skid’ sets are just that, open and sat on the skid. No sound attenuation and they will be significantly louder than a silent generator. If noise isn’t a worry then open skid sets can be a great option. Have a look at our used generators page where we have some good cheaper generator options for you.

Noise is measured in dB(A) ( A-weighted decibels) and generator manufactures  will give generators  a dB(A) rating at a set distance for example 77 dB(A) @ 1 meter.  Generally silent generators range from 75-85 dB(A) at 1m. The easiest way for us to explain what this sounds like is by showing you dB(A) ratings of common every day sounds that hopefully you can relate to.

All of our new diesel generators have their dB(A) rating on their data sheet, if you are unsure please give our friendly team a call.

Have a look at our info-graphic chart for more information.


dBA rating for a diesel generator