The word generator rings in our minds whenever the power is out or when a blackout or brownout has occurred. Generators have become an important aspect of our lives. When there is no electricity, a lot is at stake, and activities grind to a halt with a lot of money being lost. Many people suffer losses in businesses, homes, and the economy too is affected, all because of a prolonged blackout. Luckily, though, generators come in as an alternative means of power that is useful until the power issue has been resolved, and the electrical supply restored. In other cases, they are used during camping in places with no electrical power. In our homes, generators are essential throughout the year as an electricity backup power source when there are blackouts or electrical faults. In case the power goes out, the generators will run and keep the condition of your home the same, be it in summer or winter, where heat regulation becomes crucial at home. Read on to find out more about the seven different types of home generators to choose from so that in the event that you purchase one, you do so after making an informed decision.
Three main types of generators
There are three types of generators: standby, portable, and inverter. Every one of these generators has its advantages and disadvantages. There are other things to consider as well before you purchase a generator, like a generator’s wattage and the type of fuel that it uses.
7. Solar Generators
The natural form of energy is one of the best ways to power homes. Solar generators are a quintessence of this, as they use the sun to produce power. They use solar panels to obtain energy from the sun, and in turn, the obtained energy is stored in a battery. The said battery is later tapped to produce the required electrical supply. This form of energy is the cheapest, simplest, and most renewable. It is readily available and is also the cleanest one. The solar generator is the only generator that can operate inside the house safely as it produces no emissions that may be a hazard to the occupants. Their maintenance cost is low. With all these upsides, something’s got to give; the cost of purchasing and installation is hefty. Additionally, in terms of power output, it is low. Thus, in the event of an emergency, it might let you down if the batteries had not fully charged. Solar generators are thus a bit unreliable, and you may need to add an extra battery and solar panels. There are different sizes of solar generators according to the size and needs to keep your light on.
- Zero emissions
- Affordable maintenance
- Can be stored and run indoors
- They are not noisy
- Best in minimal electric needs
- Affordable to run
- Have a low power output which makes them slow
- Expensive to buy and install
- They are not portable; thus, they must be stationed in one place
- Conducive to use only when the sun is available
- Not a reliable emergency means
6. Inverter Generators
The inverter generators are unique in their way. As much as they are disliked for their loud irksome noise, they produce clean energy which is safe for the people using them. The generator is crucial as it is used in various performers like boats, air conditions, refrigerators, automobiles, charging phones and laptops, etc. Therefore, it is more suitable for hunters, campers, and fishermen. It uses an AC (alternating current power) power, whereby needing a rectifier, it converts the AC (alternating power) power into DC (direct current) power and converts it again to AC power for optimal fuel efficiency and clean power. The generators are very light, portable, and small in size, unlike other generators. The new models of these generators have been made to produce less noise while in operation, which makes them more suitable to use in a less noisy environment.
- In terms of noise, it is quieter than other generators
- It is easy to carry and use
- It produces clean energy, which means few emissions are realized in the air
- The best generator to use for electronics purposes
- They run for long
- They are expensive
- They are limited in powering heavy machinery and whole homes
5. Portable Generators
Planning to visit a remote site or stay in a cabin for a few days, and you’re worried whether the electricity supplier will sustain your needs while you’re there? Worry no more. The portable generator is the answer to all your worries. Portable generators can provide sustainable power to run and keep your trip in the cabin all fun and enjoyable, while having everything you have at home, like charging your phone, power for the TV, fridge, and keeping you warm in cold seasons. Portable generators use different fuels to produce electricity. They use diesel, solar power, or gas to run them. Portable generators are especially effective when dealing with short power outages. They are small in size and, as the name suggests, they can be carried from one place to another without a lot of fuss or hassle. Portable generators, according to wiki How, are handy for almost all tasks at home, construction sites, or outdoor operations and events. However, before purchasing, consider their wattage.
- Easy storage
- Affordable compared to all other generators
- Easy to carry
- Has a power limit thus can only operate on limited home appliances
- It can’t be operated inside a garage or home
- Requires extra amount of care from the harsh weather condition
- Has a disturbing noise
4. Diesel Generators
Diesel generators come in various models. According to Walt Power, diesel generators are heavy but mostly portable. The availability of diesel makes it convenient to use during blackouts. However, it is advisable to use them for a short period due to their emission, which can be hazardous to both the environment and people’s health when inhaled. Diesel generators are built-in with tough engines with a long-life span that supports them well when performing heavy duties in harsh climate conditions. During winter, the generators are a sure bet, and they will not give you a hard time to start. This makes them more favorable to use not only during the rainy season but only at any time of the year, provided that they are covered well to prevent moisture from entering into the generator. The diesel fuel is least flammable and can be stored for up to two years. That being said, this does not mean caution should not be taken while storing the fuel. Ensure the lid of the container storing the diesel is tightly closed and the container is stored away from anything that might trigger the fuel to combust. However, with advanced technology, inquire from the seller if the diesel generator can use any other fuel to operate.
- The fuel is cheap compared to gasoline
- The generator has a long-life span
- Easy to start in cold temperatures
- It poses a health hazard
- Operates while it’s outside
- Has disturbing noise
- Expensive to purchase, unlike the gasoline generator
3. Natural Gas Generators
Are you the kind of person who loves to protect nature? Then this generator should be at the top of the list for you. Did you know the natural gas generators are friendly to the environment as they produce little waste during operation? These generators don’t produce a lot of noise, and a vast majority of them are not portable. Natural gas generators are pocket-friendly. Additionally, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on maintenance costs in terms of fuel, and the purchase expense is also not that high. Natural gas is already available, which gives these generators an endless supply of power sources. Thus, the generator will not run out of fuel.
- Natural gas generators are affordable
- Availability of fuel
- Produces clean emissions compared to other generators
- Starts well in cold temperatures
- Can use the already existing gas line
- Quite while running
- High cost of installation
- It should be installed outside
- Do not last long, unlike diesel generators
2. Gasoline Generators
This generator is commonly used in commercial places as well as homes. They use gas or diesel to operate; gasoline is available in most cases, making the generators cheap to purchase. However, when there is a power outage, gasoline becomes unavailable because it requires electricity to pump. Gasoline can be purchased and stored properly for up to six to 12 months in an airtight container. That being said, it is essential to note it is highly flammable, according to API. It should be stored carefully and away from the sun or the heat in a distance of 50 feet due to its properties. Gasoline generators can be used in homes to power the television, refrigerators, and freezers. Gasoline generators are used when there is a temporary power shortage, as they cannot run for long hours like standby generators. And unlike the standby generators, gasoline generators can use extension cables that are fixed to any appliance. However, ensure you know how to do that while purchasing the generator or follow the instruction manual to the letter. This way, it will be safer to plug it directly on your own. It is essential to get a professional to fix it firstly on the sub-panel of your home for safety purposes. They are portable; thus, they can be used in multiple functions.
- Affordable to purchase a generator
- Availability of gas
- Available in portable sizes
- Dangerous as the fuel is highly flammable
- They do not start well in cold temperatures
- Have an irksome noise and high emissions
- It can’t be used indoors
- The cost of fuel is high compared to other fuels
1. Standby Generators
The standby generator is better known as the backup generator or the whole house generator. It is one of the most powerful generators that doesn’t need manual starts as they can automatically operate when the power goes out. It is mostly defined as the electrical powering system. Standby generators occupy a large space, they are not portable, and their price is high. These generators run using diesel and are the best in terms of covering emergency moments like when there is a power outage in hospitals. They can keep the patients who are in oxygen or surgery safe in supply on automatic power backup. Standby generators are also good when it comes to supplying the entire household with electricity. According to Google Play, with the help of advanced technology, it is now possible for homeowners to have an app that displays the generators activities, like the fuel levels. The most amazing part is that some advanced generators can use more than one power source. They can run on gasoline and solar, which gives an alternative when there is no diesel available. Having a standby generator at home is a plus and unregretful investment.
- In an emergency, they perfume very well to save the day by automatically going on
- They can run for a long time if the power has gone out for days
- Powers the whole home, creating a great environment to continue running things normally
- Don’t require extension cords
- Can use alternative power sources
- They are expensive to purchase.
- They produce noise that can be very irritating
- Expensive to maintain as they need a yearly maintenance routine.
- Require a large storage space.
- They are not portable thus can only be fixed in one place.
It is crucial to seek professional help and get more details before settling on any generator. Get to understand the reason for buying a generator; consider your budget, wattage needs, fuel used by the generator, and the right size generator for you. Additionally, make sure that you know all the small details and special features that each generator has. Source for a reputable dealer that will service the generator and ensure you have the correct documentation for your generator before leaving the store, like the warrants and guarantee.