Lighting Towers and Wet Stacking
It is common practice to use diesel powered equipment as a source for additional power generation, especially when on-site generators are running at full capacity. Diesel generators are designed to work with the load. When the diesel engine is running well below its output level, the engine starts to consume excessive fuel, which we call wet stacking. Diesel engines show an efficiency of 70-80% output power. If the engine is run for a long time below 40% output power, it will start to consume excessive fuel. This is also about city driving, the same as driving at low speed for long periods of time. Wet stacking occurs because; The injected fuel tanks have carbonized, causing the fuel injection to be cut off. Diesel engines without spark plugs rely on hot compressed air in the cylinder to vaporize and ignite the fuel. When the air is cooler than the design temperature, combustion conditions are less than ideal. Fuel ignites and burns, but not completely. The unburned fuel will run out and be noticed as wetness in the exhaust system, hence the phrase wet stacking. The word "stacking" comes from the term "stack" for the exhaust pipe. Commercial generator systems, depending on the load, experience wet stacking problems in low output power situations. Because; Users performing various load applications artificially load the generator with an automatic load set. In particular, lighting towers can be used for power generation as well as their use as light sources. A disadvantage of this practice is that wet stacking can occur, causing accumulated, unburned fuel to be exhausted. Not only is this inefficient, it can also shorten the life of your light towers.
In some industrial applications, lighting towers are used only as a power source and not for lighting. The motor it has is used to power other equipment or devices. For example, when a field shed is powered by a lighting tower, wet stacking of the lighting tower can occur because the shed's power is not sufficient for the lighting tower generator to operate at maximum efficiency and burn all the fuel. If a 20kW light tower is only used as a light source, wet stacking can occur as each light draws only 1,000 Watts of power. With four 1,000 W lights, the maximum requirement is only 4,000 W and around 16,000 W is unused. To prevent wet stacking of the illumination tower generator, it is necessary to install additional elements that draw the remaining available power.
A Frequently Asked Question Is: Why Would I Use A Lighting Tower As A Power Source And Not A Generator?
In general, the intention to use a light tower solely as a power source is not uncommon. However, there is a lot of work equipment on a job site, and an industrial job site sometimes needs a lot of power to power other equipment.
How Do I Know If My Lighting Tower Is Wet Stacked?
If any or all of the following conditions are present, your generator is likely inefficient:
• If black exhaust smoke comes out of your exhaust pipe constantly
• If a thick, dark substance is dripping from the exhaust pipes of your diesel engine
• If soot or hard carbon deposits form inside the exhaust stack
Tips to Avoid Wet Stacking
The general rule of thumb for avoiding wet stacking is to provide an 80% load on the generator/light during its run time to avoid wet stacking.
If tower-mounted lights do not draw at least 80% of generator power, ensure that the outlets on the light tower are used to power other industrial site equipment.
Is There a Solution for Wet Stacking?
In case of wet stacking of a 20kW light tower, turn on all lights (4,000 Watts) and connect additional equipment that draws 6,000-10,000 Watts (50-80% capacity) and run for a minimum of 8 hours, raising the exhaust temperature. be high enough to evaporate the unburned fuel in the exhaust system and blow the soot out so that you can avoid further damage from this undesirable condition.
If a unit has a history of long-term low-load operation or has no documentation of recent use at sufficient load, you can perform the load-test procedure.