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Do I need to hire a generator for my marquee party?

July 20, 2022

Whether or not you need an electrical power generator for your marquee party or event is dependent upon a number of different factors.

  • Do you have direct access to an electrical supply?
  • If so, how far from the electrical supply will your marquee be located?
  • How many of your suppliers require a power supply and what equipment are they using?

A generator is an additional cost, so it’s worth knowing whether you are going to need one as early in the event planning process as possible.

Your marquee supplier will be able to advise on whether you need a generator for your event, but in the meantime, here are a few tips and considerations that could help you decide where to place your marquee and which questions to ask your other suppliers too:

You shouldn’t need a generator…

…if your marquee is going to be built close to a house or outbuilding with an electrical supply. If this is the case, then the power can be safely taken from there. Powering your marquee from a direct power supply is not only safe but cost effective too.

However, it’s important to make sure that, as we do at Inside Outside, your marquee supplier uses only qualified electricians when dealing with electrical supplies, lighting, and other electrical equipment.

Make sure that the power supply is close enough

Power dissipates as it travels along lengths of cable. This is known as voltage drop and it means that the further the power has to travel along the cable from the original source the lower the voltage supply will be at the other end.

As a rule of thumb, we would always recommend that cabling from the original power source be no longer than 30 metres. That said, via specialist armoured cabling hire, it is possible to extend this distance to up to 100 metres. Bear in mind that armoured cable would need to be hired too, so you’ll need to weigh up the benefits and cost differences versus generator hire.

What power requirements do your suppliers have?

Your marquee is going to need lighting, and at various times of year heating. Additionally, your other suppliers are likely to need power too. Think entertainment, bar and caterers for example.

Caterers sometimes use refrigerated trailers and may bring their own generator. If they are planning to use your marquee power supply you’ll need to know this upfront.

Your marquee supplier will assess the potential power draw for your event and recommend the most suitable power source.

Multiple generators

Whilst one generator is usually enough for a marquee event, it is sensible to have a backup generator too. Whilst generators are regularly serviced and well maintained, there’s always a chance that mechanical equipment will fail.

The last thing that you want is for your party to be ruined by a faulty generator. A backup generator offers peace of mind and, should your main generator fail, automatically kicks in without missing a beat.

We’ve already discussed refrigerated caterer’s trailers. But if you’re running your marquee via a generator and your caterer needs to hook into your power supply, make sure that they have a separate generator. Refrigerated trailers have a large power draw and will not be able to use the same generator that is running everything else in your marquee.

If the caterer doesn’t bring a power supply of their own, then you’ll need to hire a small generator. Your marquee supplier will be able to source this for you.

Are you planning a marquee party?

Speak to a member of our team for advice, guidance and no obligation quotes and estimates. Call 01372 459485 or email sales@inside-outside.co.uk to start the conversation!

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