Blackouts can be inconvenient, especially if they go on for too long. With unpredictable weather conditions, power outages are becoming more and more common. Having some sort of power backup is now essential so that you don’t run into any problems. No doubt, there are many great generator brands out there, but choosing the right kind of generator can be tough.
So, if you want to know more about the best generator brands or the right type of generator, then you are at the right place.
8 types of generator
While looking for the best generator brands, you must have come across many options. Generators are generally classified based on their power sources and size. Each type of generator is useful for different purposes. Here are 8 types of power generators you should know about:
Diesel is one of the least flammable fuels. Although most generators run best on diesel, some are also designed to run on other sources such as gas or liquid fuel.
Diesel generators have better durability, longer life and less maintenance requirements. Because diesel burns at a lower temperature than gasoline, these generators also produce less heat. Therefore, they are a great option for producing more power at a lower cost.
- easy to operate
- long life
- No need for frequent maintenance
- release harmful emissions
- Not suitable for wet or damp environments
2. Natural Gas
Natural gas, including propane and LPG, is one of the most commonly used fuels. These types of generators are highly durable and cheap to operate. Furthermore, they are famous because they use one of the cleanest fossil fuels to work.
- natural gas burns cleanly
- quieter than other types
- Natural gas is readily available in power outages
- Don’t last as long as diesel generators
- not portable
- Requires gas line connection, which can be costly
Gasoline generators are another common type. This is because gas is used as fuel in these, which can be easily found anywhere. Furthermore, they are affordable and highly portable. They are also available in small and compact sizes, which are easy to store indoors.
The only problem is that it can be hard to get gasoline during a power outage. However, they are a good option if you face occasional power outages. They can provide high production at very low cost.
- produce a lot of emissions
- Can be difficult to start in cold temperatures
These generators use solar panel energy for electricity. They are very handy as you can easily find sunlight anywhere. However, the problem may lie in the time it takes to charge them. They require about 8 hours of sunlight to fully charge their batteries.
- Work on renewable and free energy source
- Perfect for Small Appliances
- takes a long time to charge
- Can be costlier than its fuel counterparts
Hydrogen is one of the cleanest sources of energy, and it is also available in abundance. It is non-toxic, cheap and much better at power generation than any other source of fuel. In addition, a hydrogen generator can be a good source of stable power supply.
Hydrogen generators are not as common as other types and are mostly used in laboratories. They may become more common when even the best generator brands start rolling them out.
- cheap fuel alternative
- Strong and resistant to impact damage
- produce more energy per pound
- Can be expensive as it is a new technology
- not common
Standby generators (backup or emergency power systems) start on their own and typically use diesel or gas as fuel. They also have extra large fuel tanks which allow them to run for up to 48 hours before refueling.
These generators have lightning protection and automatic transfer switch. Hence they can detect power fluctuations or loss within seconds and start on their own. Hence, they are commonly used in hospitals or elevators etc. Some also have a WiFi feature to monitor their status through a mobile app.
- automatic transfer switch
- uninterruptible power supply
- Powerful enough to run the whole house
- requires regular maintenance
Portable generators are typically powered by gas, diesel or solar power. They are useful for short term power outages or camping trips etc. Plus, they come in different sizes and can run TVs, fridges, and freezers. The best thing about them is their small size which makes them easy to drive.
You can wire it into your home’s subpanel or plug it directly into appliances with an extension cord. These generators are also often seen on construction sites or in camping areas to power lights and small appliances.
- very cheap
- Useful for short term power supply
- easy to move around
- Can be easily stored at home or in the car
- Needs protection from water and weather
- may not generate as much power as larger
- Not suitable for indoor use due to emissions
Generators are often very loud and annoying. However, the invention of inverter generators noticeably reduced their noise. They are also energy and fuel-efficient and safe for sensitive gadgets. Unlike the standard, they can produce electricity in three phases. This type is popular among construction workers, campers and hunters etc.
- long operating time
- quieter and better performance
- low emission
- protect devices from power surges
- clean and sustainable energy production
- No need for frequent refueling
- Not suitable for large devices
Conclusion on Choosing the Right Type from the Best Generator Brands
No matter which brand you choose, each type of generator has its pros and cons. So, it is up to your needs to decide which features you can swap out for other properties. Nevertheless, it is important to do thorough research and make a careful decision before purchasing any generator.
Now that you know about the types of generators, you can figure out your needs and get one that best suits your needs. However, it is always a good practice to consult experts before finalizing any decision.