Kilovolt-amperes (kVA) is a measure of apparent power – it represents the total amount of power that is being used by a system, and it is an important factor for business owners when considering investing in a diesel generator.
kVA vs kW – what’s the difference?
Kilovolt-amperes are a unit of measurement that refers to the total amount of apparent power being used by an electrical system – kVA tells you how much power your equipment needs to function correctly. The higher the kVA rating of your equipment, the more power it will require to operate properly.
In comparison to kVA, kilowatts (kW) measure real or active power. kW measures the actual energy being consumed by a system at any given moment, while kVA measures the total amount of energy that could potentially be consumed if all components were running at full capacity.
Why Is Knowing Your kVA Important?
Knowing your kVA helps you get an accurate picture of how much energy your equipment needs to function properly as well what size generator is the right one for your business. It also helps ensure that you don’t overload your circuits with too much current—which can cause serious safety issues or even fires from overheating wires and equipment.
How Is Kilovolt-Amperes Calculated?
kW can be calculated using two simple formulas: First, you calculate the volt-ampere rating (VAR) for each component in your system: VAR = Voltage x Current x Power Factor. Then you can calculate kVA by multiplying the VAR rating for each component by 1.73: kVA = VAR x 1.73. Finally, add up all the individual kVAs and you have your total kVA rating for your system.