Generators are required to produce electricity for settlements. Once a generator has been constructed, it is necessary to connect it with copper wires to a power grid to harness its power. The power can then be used to power other settlement objects such as lights, turrets, water purifiers, and other utilities.
The base game includes four types of generators; three other types are added through add-ons.
|Type of generator||Power production||Base ID||Editor ID|
This generator is silent but is noticeably more expensive in the power-to-cost ratio.
Small, medium and large generators
Those noisy generators appear to produce power through the combustion of some sort of fuel. The large generator may have nuclear as a secondary form of power generation, as it requires nuclear material to build, unlike the other two. They are the cheapest source of electricity for settlements of small and average size. Of the three, the small generator has the best power-to-cost ratio.
The small and medium generators are the only generators to easily fit inside regular wooden structures.
This reactor was introduced by the Wasteland Workshop add-on. It is a near-silent power source. It provides 100 units of power, 10 times as much as the large generator, its closest contender, albeit requiring four ranks in the Science! perk rather than just one rank.
The fusion generator is a fusion powered electric generator that uses a fusion core to produce electricity. Its appearance and animations are almost identical to the fusion generators found throughout the Commonwealth. Despite this, it is not possible to have the generator interact with fusion cores in any way. Nor is a fusion core required in order to craft the fusion generator. Unlike the fusion generators found around the wasteland, player character built fusion generators do not have the light above the main control panel.
Fusion generators can be shut down and powered back up by pressing upon the fusion core in the main panel.
This reactor was introduced by the Vault-Tec Workshop add-on. The production of this virtually silent reactor represents a 50% increase over the fusion generator. However, it requires more resources and requires much more open space in settlements.
The Vault-Tec reactor has the ability to power floors and walls that have a direct connection to it even without cables. The power can be used by attaching an electrical outlet on the connected wall.
Despite its appearance, the reactor's underside, which looks like part of the flooring, is vulnerable to damage from under it, so you may want to avoid using the reactor's underside as a ceiling in places that may be attacked by enemies.
Vault Star super-reactor
The Vault Star super-reactor (named Vault-Tec super-reactor in-game) was introduced by the Vault-Tec Workshop add-on. The Vault-Tec super-reactor greatly surpasses the fusion generator as the greatest source of energy available. It is virtually silent as well; these advantages come at a cost, however. The reactor takes up a large amount of space, much more than the fusion generator, and requires many parts to build.
Even though the Vault-Tec super reactor gives 5 times more power than the fusion generator, it costs 8.3 times more nuclear material to build. Like its smaller variant, it has the ability to send power through floors and walls of the vault variant of materials. Likewise, the reactor's underside 'floor' is vulnerable to damage which can knock the reactor out if hit enough times.
- Small generator
Small generator (1)
- Medium generator
Medium generator (1)
- Large generator
Nuclear material (3)
Science!: Rank 1
Large generator (1)
- Windmill generator
Windmill generator (1)
- Fusion generator
Nuclear material (12)
Science!: Rank 4
Fusion generator (1)
- Vault-Tec reactor
Nuclear material (40)
Vault-Tec reactor (1)
- Vault Star super-reactor
Nuclear material (100)
Vault Star super-reactor (1)
Each settlement may have one or more power grids.
- A power grid is a collection of settlement objects, including one or more generators, and one or more power-consuming settlement objects, connected together by one or more wires.
- The power available to the power-consuming objects in each grid is the sum of the power of all generators connected to that grid.
- Objects do not need to be directly connected to each other to form part of the same grid. They may be indirectly connected via any number of intermediate connecting settlement objects (including conduits and pylons, other generators, and other power-consuming objects) or wires.
- Note that connections do not pass through settlement objects - whether those are generators or power-consuming objects - that are damaged or turned off.
- Zero-power objects:
- Certain objects such as lightbulbs do not need to be wired into the power grid, but merely need to be placed in proximity to a power-radiating object in the grid.
- The zero-power objects also do not reduce the remaining power available to the grid.
- These objects are identified by having no number next to the lightning bolt when viewed in Build mode.
- Power-radiating objects:
- Power-radiating objects include most connectors, switches, and pylons, but not generators.
- They cannot be identified easily in-game as power-radiating objects, but have the actor value PowerRadiation, with a value that indicates the range of power radiation for that object.
- Generally most switches have a value of 256, most other connectors have a value of 500, hence a greater range of radiated power.
- Small generator at Outpost Zimonja.
- Small generator at the USS Constitution.
- Medium generator outside University Point.
- Medium generator in the western part of Quincy ruins.
- Vault 88. Vault-Tec reactor in
- Generators are created already in the running state.
- "Activating" a generator toggles it between off and on.
- Thus - counterintuitively -"Activating" a generator for the first time actually turns it off, not on.
- When in the running (on) state, the generator can be seen to vibrate, and smoke will come from its exhaust.
- Generators can stop working if a certain amount of damage is sustained. This is signified by the generator starting to smoke heavily, and by the presence of a Repair option in the Build view.
- A damaged generator can be repaired from the Build view, if the required components are available.
- Upon returning to a settlement powered by a fusion generator, its power output will be 0. Replacing the wire connected to it in workshop mode can temporarily fix this.[verified]
- Workshop menu and pick the generator up and then placing it down again.[verified] Occasionally upon returning to a settlement, the wires that power the generator will not display as being connected to the generator. This can be fixed by opening up the