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The Generac Guardian™ 17kw standby generator system (100a 16-circuit automatic switch) is available for purchase today.

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Generac Guardian™ 17kW Standby Generator System (100A 16-Circuit Automatic Switch)

(Based on expert analysis, manufacturer ratings and customer reviews)
4.8 out of 54.8 out of 54.8 out of 54.8 out of 54.8 out of 5
4 Reviews
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(as of 06:57 CST - Details)
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  • Features
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Air Cooled Standby Generators
17 kW
Rated Watts
Need Help? Ask Our Generator Experts.

Fully Automatic Operation
Operates On Clean Burning, Efficient Natural Gas or LP (Vapor)

Generac OHVI Air-Cooled Engine
Features plateau honed cylinder walls and plasma-moly rings
Full pressure lubrication system w/ 2 year oil change interval

Skewed Rotor Design For Smooth Output Waveform "Clean Power"
Automatic voltage regulator equipped for +/- 1% regulation

Evolution™ Digital Controller Monitors & Controls All Functions
Provides system status for wireless monitors & Mobile Link™

Sound Attenuated Weather Proof Enclosure
Attractive styling with lockable access doors
Incorporates electrostatically applied epoxy paint technology
Sound dampening enclosure limits sound pressure to a low 66dB(A)

Includes 16 Circuit Load Center Style Auto Transfer Switch (100A)
5' Pre-wired External Connection Box From Wall to Generator
30' Pre-Wired Indoor Conduit From Switch To External Box
2' Pre-Wired Indoor Conduit From Transfer Switch To Main Panel
12" flexible fuel line and manual included

Built-in Battery Charger (Battery Sold Separately)

5-Year Limited Warranty & 24/7/365 Customer Care

  Model Number:6242
 Manufacturer:Generac Guardian
 Made in USA:Yes
 Brand:Generac OHVI
 HP/CC:992 cc
 Consumer Engine Warranty:5 Years
 Commercial Engine Warranty:5 Years
 Engine RPM:3600 RPM
 Low Oil Alert/Shutdown:Yes
Product Specs
 Voltage120/240 Single-Phase
 Frequency:60 Hertz
 Cooling SystemAir Cooled
 Fuel TypeLP/Natural Gas
 NG Power Capacity16,000 Watts
 LP Power Capacity17,000 Watts
 NG Consumption (50% Load)190 ft³/hr (BTU: 190,000 BTU/HR)
 NG Consumption (100% Load)312 ft³/hr (BTU: 312,000 BTU/HR)
 LP Consumption (50% Load)2.06 gallons/hr (BTU: 186,945 BTU/HR)
 LP Consumption (100% Load)3.57 gallons/hr (BTU: 323,978 BTU/HR)
 Rated Amps:71 Amps @ 240 Volts (Single Phase)
 Decibel Rating @ 7m:66 db(A)
 A/C Ton Rating4-Tons
 Mounting PadComposite (Included)
 Transfer Switch:Automatic (Included)
 Transfer Switch Amperage:100-Amps
 Transfer Switch StylePre-Wired (16-Circuit)
 ATS Service Disconnect:No
 ATS Load Shedding:Not Compatible
 Transfer Switch Circuits:5  - 15A/120V
5  - 20A/120V
1  - 20A/240V
1  - 50A/240V
1  - 40A/240V
 Battery:Not Included (525 CCA)
 UL ListedYes
 Weight:471 Lbs.
(121.92 x 63.50 x 73.66 cm)
 Dimensions:48"L x 25"W x 29"H
 Consumer Warranty:5 Years
 Commercial Warranty:5 Years

  13 Questions
Q: I am interested in a generator with an automatic transfer switch capability because I have a high water table situation in the winter months and run sump pumps.

I have a 10 kW gasoline generator already, but I also have a 500 gallon LP tank I'd like to use for this purpose for duration and automatic start. I have two questions.

1.) What should I do with my existing transfer switch?
and 2.) Unfortunately, my LP tank is on the wrong side of my house from my electrical panel. Is there a limit to how long can the run be from the LP tank to fuel a generator such as this?

by Justin from Virginia on March 17, 2014

A: You will need to take out your existing manual transfer switch and replace it with the appropriate automatic transfer switch such as the one that is prepackaged with model 6242 (17kW).

Regarding the fuel line, there are specifics when it comes to pipe sizing but you are not limited by distance as long as the correct pipe diameter is used. Here is the requirements....

Natural Gas (3.5-7" Water Column):

3/4 Inch: Cannot Use
1 Inch: Max Distance 40 Feet
1-1/4 Inch: Max Distance 190 Feet
1-1/2 Inch: Max Distance 425 Feet

Liquid Propane Vapor (11-14" Water Column):

1/2 Inch: Cannot Use
3/4 Inch: Max Distance 25 Feet
1 Inch: Max Distance 130 Feet
1-1/4: Inch: Max Distance 540 Feet

Add 2.5ft per any bend, tee or angle in the pipe to the overall distance.

Gas Pipe sizing is one of the most commonly made mistakes. A properly sized gas pipe is critical to the proper operation of the generator. The generator inlet size has no bearing on the proper gas pipe size.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: I have 150 amp service coming in to the house. Can I put a 100 amp generator in or do I need to put a 150 in. I'm not looking to do the whole house. Looking to do a few lights frig boiler and ductless ac/ heat pump unit. They say the power for the ac/ heat pump unit is 208 -230 Thanks
by Rich from New York on February 12, 2014

A: The essential circuit transfer switches are mounted after the main panel as a sub-panel so the amperage does not need to match the main panel amperage.

Please note: Applications that are commercial, all-electric homes, ***have heat pump systems*** or geothermal systems require special installation procedures and a certified electrician must be contacted to evaluate and install these types of systems.

Heat pump systems typically require and extremely large amount of starting amperage and unless the generator is properly sized it will not have the output capacity to start the pumps.

We recommend consulting with a certified electrician for proper generator sizing and installation based on your specific application and local electrical code requirements.

Note: A 17kW home standby generator produces 71 Amps @ 240 Volts (Single Phase) and proper generator sizing is based on 80% of a generators running capacity to provide a margin of flexibility.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: Regarding the Generac 7kW fueled by Nat Gas . Spec states fuel consumption is 85 ft3/hr for 1/2 load. My question is what is this equivalent to in CCF?

by Ed from Pennsylvania on February 06, 2014

A: Natural Gas is usually measured by volume in the United States and is stated in cubic feet. A cubic foot of gas is the amount of gas needed to fill a volume of one cubic foot under set conditions of pressure and temperature.

To measure larger amounts of natural gas, "CCF" (centum cubic-feet) is used to denote 100 cubic feet, and "MCF" (mil cubic-feet) is used to denote 1,000 cubic feet.

With that said, due to the small amount of consumption you wouldn't convert the current ft3/hr to CCF.

However, if you are trying to calculate the cost in relation to therms listed by your natural gas company the conversion is 1000 ft3/hr equals 10 therms.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: Would winter time installations of automatic generators be good or bad?

by Ron Mills from Michigan on December 30, 2013

A: You can install a generator at any time. However, it would be based on if you are putting down a concrete base as it will not set in cold temperatures. If you are putting down crushed stone or pea gravel it should be no problem.

You can also go with a GenPad (Gen Manufacturer Specific) which is a preform concrete base, so no concrete curing time. These can be installed in any temperature.

Generac GenPads

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: I have a low pressure nat. gas line in my residence, what is the largest generator I will be able to run without doing major updates ?

by Chuck from Ohio on December 10, 2013

A: The Generac line of home standby systems can now operate on low pressure natural gas. Their low fuel pressure requirement is 3.5" to 5" of water column (1" of water column = 0.036 PSI).....0.123 PSI to 0.18 PSI. This would be for all sizes from 8kW up to 20kW.

Proper sizing of the generator is crucial to the success of any generator installation and requires a good working knowledge of electricity and its characteristics, as well as the varying requirements of the electrical equipment comprising the load.

A certified electrician needs to be consulted for proper sizing and installation of any generator.

When analyzing the electrical load, consult the manufacturer’s nameplate on each major appliance or piece of equipment to determine its starting requirements in terms of amps and voltage which can be calculated to watts using Ohms Law (Amps x Volts = Watts).

When choosing the generator output select a rating that is approximately 20 to 25% higher than the peak load (for example, if the load is about 8 kilowatts, select a 10 kW generator).

A higher rated generator will operate comfortably at approximately 80% of its full capacity and will provide a margin of flexibility if the load increases in the future.

Note: Applications such as commercial, all-electric homes, heat pump systems or geothermal systems require special installation procedures and a certified electrician must be contacted to evaluate and install these types of systems.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: If I'm not around when my home standby generator is running, what type of protections systems do the Generac units have?
by Josh from New Jersey on November 13, 2013

A: The generator may have to run for long periods of time with no operator present to
monitor the engine/generator conditions. Therefore, the generator is equipped with a number of systems to automatically shut down the unit to protect it against potentially damaging conditions. Some of these systems are as follows:

• Low Oil Pressure Sensor
• High Temperature Sensor
• Overcrank Sensor
• Overspeed Sensor
• RPM Sensor
• Under-frequency Sensor
• Undervoltage Sensor
• Overvoltage Sensor
• Internal Failure Sensor
• Low Battery Voltage Alarm

The control panel contains a display which alerts the operator when a fault condition occurs. The above list is not all inclusive. For more information about alarms and control panel operation, see Section 3 (Operation) in the owner's manual.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: What type of oil should I use in my Generac home standby generator?
by Jim from Illinois on November 11, 2013

A: The maintenance section in the Generac's home standby owner's manual lists that the oil type is based on temperature ranges specific in your area.....

SAE-30 above 32º F (0º C)
10W-30 between 40º and -10º F (4º and -23º C)
Synthetic 5W-30 for all temperature ranges

All new models come with SAE-30 oil in them and have been test run at the factory for 25 hours and no break-in is required. The first oil change would be at 2 years or 200 hours, whichever comes first.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: I am going to purchase 17 KW unit in the next 2 months. My question is how far from my propane source can I run 3/4 inch black gas pipe.
by Frank Janeczko from Missouri on November 06, 2013

A: The maximum distance for LP fuel on a 3/4 inch pipe to a 17kW Generac generator is 25 feet and you would need to add 2.5 feet for every bend, tee or angle in the pipe.

If you need to go further then 25 feet you will need to upgrade to 1 inch where you can run a max distance of 130 feet.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: I'm not sure if this falls into the repair area but, I'm concerned about the sound this generator produces. Is there a way to lower that? Is there sound proofing approved for use for the interior walls of this type of home standby? My neighbors bedroom window will be 20ft from where I plan to install the generator. I would prefer doing something inside the generator as apposed to some type of fencing or other exsternal methods.

by Mark Hernandez from New Jersey on October 23, 2013

A: The manufacturers make every effort to reduce the sound of their generators as best they can keeping within NFPA and UL requirements. There are currently no options or parts available to install inside home standby systems to reduce their db(A) levels.

Your only option is location or sound barriers installed around the unit while keeping within NFPA and manufacturers distance requirements for proper fire protection, air intake and exhaust output.

We recommend consulting with your local inspector or AHJ (Authority Having Jurisdiction) as to the specific local code requirements.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: Is the smart Switch the actual Automatic Transfer Switch? Or are they different? The specs says that there is an automatic transfer switch included. Also, I would like to know if a bottom pad for the generator included?

by Joseph Pylilo from New York on October 21, 2013

A: The "smart switch" is the automatic transfer switch. The ATS has an internal load manager that will load shed up to 2 AC units preventing the overload of the generator at start-up.

The generator does come with a composite pad already attached to the bottom of the unit (generator base) but a permanent base is required and can be either concrete, crushed stone or pea gravel with a minimum thickness of 3 - 4 inches.

We do offer the GenPad which comes in both 3 inch and 4 inch thickness...here is the link to review their info and pricing....

Generator Pads

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: I have a new 2013 Generac generator and I'm wondering what oil it came with? I would like to top it off properly after the installation.

by John from New Jersey on October 18, 2013

A: The Generac 2013 automatic standby generators are shipped with a SAE 30 non-synthetic oil. If you are located in an area that receives snow, it is recommended to perform an oil and filter change to switch to a synthetic 5W-30 oil to promote proper generator operation. The cold weather kit is also recommended.

The appropriate intervals for oil changes and other maintenance items will be located in the owner’s manual in the Maintenance Schedule.

Current production models do not require any break in, so if the Maintenance Schedule in the owner's manual indicates that oil changes only need to be done every 2 years or 200 hours, you could drain the existing oil and switch to synthetic 5W-30 right away.

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: Can the circuit breaker complement on the 16 circuit 100 amp switch for the Model 5873 generator be changed? What I am looking at is 1 50 amp 240v, 1 20 amp 240 v, 6 20 amp 120v, and 5 15 amp 120v for my house. The 50 amp is a 4 ton 14.5 SEER AC, the 20 amp 240v is a well water pump, and the rest are regular house circuits. Also, can ArcFault and GroundFault breakers be used with the switch? Thanks for your help. Like your website.
by Leon R Henry from Pennsylvania on August 28, 2013

A: You can accommodate the 50A 240V and 20A 240V no problem but you are only able to do a total of 10 120V circuits (5-20A and 5 - 15A). The only changes that can be made is going down in amperage on the circuits and you cannot change a 240V circuit into 2 120V circuits as this will void the UL listing and the warranty.

The transfer switch will accept AFCI breaker and the following models are approved by Generac.

Siemens Part No. Q115AF - 15A or Q120AF - 20A (These can be obtained from a local electrical wholesaler and will simply replace any of the single pole circuit breakers supplied in the pre-wired transfer switch distribution panel).

by Mike, Product Expert

Q: What is the recommended time frame to change the break-in oil on my Generac 20kW generator?

by Karin Green from New Jersey on August 10, 2013

A: All of the new 2013 Generac Home Standby generators have been pre-run at the factory for 25 hours. So, no break-in period is required.

by Mike, Product Expert

Generac Guardian 6242 Reviews & Ratings
Write Review
Overall Rating
4.8 out of 54.8 out of 54.8 out of 54.8 out of 54.8 out of 5
I'd Buy It Again (3)
Price (2)
Features (2)
Durable (1)
High Quality (1)
Need To Find A Better Lt... (1)
Had Problems With Transf... (1)
Bad Instructions (1)
Expensive (1)
Heavy (1)
100% of respondents would recommend this product to a friend
4 Reviews  Sort by 
Michael R.
Benton, AR
Purchased from Electric Generators Direct
Purchased 2/10/14
Most Helpful Positive Review
5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5
17kw Generac
I have not had an extended power outage to really test this unit so far but all indications are that it will perform as advertised. A little bit too expensive in my opinion but compared to the alternatives it is probably one of the best buys available.

Hardest part of the installation was moving it around to the back of the house which is on a hillside. I wound up building a cart and with the help of my son in law and wife we were able to move it to the concrete pad without much trouble.
Pros: I'd Buy It Again
Cons: Heavy, Expensive
Michael Recommends This Generac Guardian Product
Michael's Experience With Electric Generators Direct
Web Site


"I originally ordered this generator during a special offer that included a free mobile link unit with the generator. A week after placing the order and mailing a check to PED, I received an email advertising the same unit with a free cold weather kit. I called to see if I could change the order and get the cold weather kit rather than the mobile link. I spoke with Linda B. and asked to change the order which was in the process of shipping the very day that I called. Linda was able to stop that order and make the desired change so I could get what I wanted. Wow, EXCELLENT customer service !!!!!"
Was this review helpful?
David M.
St. George, UT
Purchased from Electric Generators Direct
Purchased 12/5/13
Total Helpful Votes
11 Helpful Votes
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5
Transfer Panel Has Problems
Everything went together great, easy to install. Started up generator and that went fine. Transfer panel would not work, check it out and there was blown fuses in the N1, N2 wires. replaced fuses and started over again. The transfer panel still won't transfer, there must be a bad relay or maybe a coil not working. Will have to dig in deeper to find the problems.
Pros: Features, Easy To Use, Light Weight, I'd Buy It Again
Cons: Had Problems With Transfer Pan El
David Recommends This Generac Guardian Product
Mike, the Generator Expert
Product Expert
Since your generator is under warranty, I would suggest contacting a Generac servicing dealer in your area. They should be able troubleshoot your transfer switch to see where the problem is.
Was this review helpful?
Lauradel M.
El Cajon, CA
Purchased from Electric Generators Direct
Purchased 6/12/14
Total Reviews
2 Reviews
5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5
17kw Generac
Really nice. Peace of mind. Buying the generator online through EGD was easy. The website answered all my questions
Spent some time going through all the reviews and looking at all their options.
Pros: I'd Buy It Again, Quiet, Price
Cons: Need To Find A Better Ltl Shipper Other Than Scia
Lauradel Recommends This Generac Guardian Product
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Leo C.
Langhorne, PA
Purchased from Electric Generators Direct
Purchased 10/31/13
Total Helpful Votes
21 Helpful Votes
5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5
Performed As Advertised
The installation by my neighbor who is a certified electrician, went smoothly. My lift gate delivery service was well worth it, especially since the driver helped us move it to the location on the side of my house. I had to call to help program the generator, but the operator was very helpful. So far all the tests have worked perfectly. The electrian was very impressed with the transfer box, and the way it operated. Totally satisfied so far.
Pros: Durable, Features, Price, High Quality
Cons: Bad Instructions
Leo Recommends This Generac Guardian Product
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Shop for the Generac Guardian™ 17kW Standby Generator System (100A 16-Circuit Automatic Switch) at Electric Generators Direct. Research Generac Guardian 696471062427 standby air-cooled generators online. Find Generac Guardian 6242 standby air-cooled generators & Generac 2013 17kW Prewired Pac features and specifications. Get the best deal; compare Generac Guardian 6242 prices now. Buy the 6242 direct and save.