The Importance of a Portable Generator Pad

portable generator pad

Portable generators are small, portable units that provide power to your home during an outage. These units can be used on their own or in combination with a permanently installed standby generator.

A pad will help keep your portable generator steady, level and out of the dirt. A concrete pad will help protect your generator from erosion and shifting ground.

Level Ground

When installing a generator, it is important to ensure that the ground is level. This will prevent any damage or injury to the generator.

The most common way to achieve level ground is with a concrete pad. These foundations are built using precise measurements and calculations.

Typically, these bases are 3 or 4 inches thick and designed to meet the load-bearing requirements of your generator. The generator is then mounted to the base with stainless steel bolts.

This method is more expensive and takes longer than other options, but it offers better stability. Additionally, the depth can easily be adjusted for your generator’s weight and local conditions.

The generator is also protected from flood water by a custom pedestal that’s built on top of the concrete base. This option can be more expensive than made-on-site pads, but it can help keep your home standby generator safe during a flood.

Vibration Isolation

When portable generator pads are used for stationary gen sets, vibration isolation is a critical consideration. Vibrations transmitted from a rotating unit may cause damage to buildings, structures, equipment and individuals.

Several different vibration isolation systems exist. Some are passive systems that can withstand a large range of frequencies and magnitudes, while others use active components to control the vibration.

Spring vibration isolators are one of the most common types. They are especially effective in reducing dynamic loading, which is caused by the weight of the generator set and surrounding ground.

Elastomeric vibration isolators are also commonly used for isolation purposes. They have a very high compliance (movement) in the vertical direction, which helps resist misalignment forces in flex-plate-coupled generator sets.

Seismic spring isolators are a useful addition to vibration isolation in areas where seismic activity is common. They dampen vibrations caused by earthquakes, preventing lateral and vertical movement of the generator set.


A portable generator pad must be made of a sturdy material to prevent cracking and failure. It also needs to meet state and local building codes.

The most common material used for generator pads is concrete. This is because it’s the strongest and most durable material available.

It is also relatively easy to construct. Basically, the generator manufacturer or installer builds a frame out of wooden sides and pours a solid mix of concrete into it.

Once cured, the generator can sit on it. It must be sized appropriately for the size of the generator.

The best pad for durability is a pre-cast one that eliminates gravel beds and simplifies installation. It should also have a sturdy base that won’t shift or move over time.


Generators are a great source of emergency power, but they can also cause serious safety problems if they are improperly used. They can cause shock and electrocution, and they may accidentally energize other electrical devices, which can lead to fires.

To minimize these risks, it’s important to choose a portable generator pad that will provide a safe and secure foundation for your generator. In addition, generator pads must meet any local fire codes and building and zoning laws, such as NFPA 37.

Concrete is the most common material for generator pad foundations, but other options exist. For instance, some construction companies use wood framing with gravel to create a base for their generator pads.

However, a generator should never be placed on a gravel surface because this can cause it to shift over time and become unstable. Rather, concrete is the most suitable choice for a generator pad, as it provides a sturdy foundation and higher durability.