Inverter Generator vs Regular Generator– Which One To Choose?
Living in a region where the storm hits pretty frequently taught me to stay prepared for a power failure during a bad weather condition.
Let's face it. Storms can occur at any time without any prior notice. Be it a snowstorm or a sudden flood, the power might go out for a long time. And the only way to stay prepared for this type of situation is to get a generator at your home.
While you are surfing the web to get an idea, the first question that might pop in your mind is, what is the key differences between Inverter Generator and Generator-which one to select?
Well, you are about to find out which option is more suitable for you at the end of this article!
First, let’s get you introduced to both of these concepts and discuss their advantages and disadvantages.
What Is A Generator?
The term “Generator” refers to a machine that transforms mechanical power into electric energy.
The most common machines that we see at any regular household is called Conventional Generator. The motor or engine inside the device is responsible for generating the mechanical energy that’s required.
Depending on the fuel type of the motor, there are 3 types of devices available.
A Propane generator runs smoothly without contaminating the exhaust system. Meaning, even if you don’t run a propane-fueled machine for a long period, the engine will still stay clean as it doesn't contain any kind of carbon deposits.
The simplest and most widely-used machines are the Gasoline ones. This machine is easy to use and simple to find a replacement part in case something gets broken.
A Dual-fuel machine is a mix of both these types and allows you to use either one of these fuel types as required.
Conventional engines run at a speed of 3600 RPM (Rotation Per Minute) and produce 120 Volts AC / 60 Hertz of current that's used in most households in the U.S. However, this speed must remain constant to deliver a steady power output all the time.
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Benefits Of Regular Generators
Max Power Output
If you are looking for a robust motor that’s able to produce more power, then a conventional machine is exactly what you need.
There’s a reason why this device can generate this much energy. The size of a device matters a lot in terms of producing electric power.
Our day-to-day activities require a lot of energy. For example, when you run your air conditioner, it takes about 1800 wattage of power on an average! A laundry machine would require around 1300 wattages.
As conventional machines usually come in large size, it holds enough power to run these activities quite smoothly.
Conventional machines come in various sizes and power. You have the option to choose the one you want according to your needs. And it's also important to choose wisely!
If you select a device that’s too big and powerful, then you will end up overpaying for the whole unit. On the other hand, a smaller unit, which is inadequate for handling the required power will overheat and stop working at some point.
Fortunately, conventional machines allow you to choose from as small as 500 watts to 50,000 watts or even higher! So, you can select the exact size you need to fulfill your requirements.
If you don’t want to pay an arm and leg for a device that you might occasionally use, then the conventional machine should be right up your alley!
A small-sized device will cost much less than the other types available on the market. And if you don’t care about the brand’s reputation, you might find yourself a really good deal while shopping for this machine.
Conventional machines are favorite to people who love devices with simple designs. Honestly speaking, it’s just a machine with an alternator attached, nothing else!
And you get some of its added benefits due to its simplicity. Such as, these machines are quite easy to control and operate. They don't break down easily and run smoothly for a long period. Even if they need some repairs or maintenance of some sort, you can easily get it done from a nearby shop.
Disadvantage Of Regular Generators
Most of the machines are quite bulky and difficult to handle. If for some reason, you need to transfer houses or move to a new place, you will have to go through a lot of hassles while transporting.
Due to its large size, it’s also hard to find a suitable spot to store device this in your home. Most of the machines require a large frame with wheels to carry them around.
What Is An Inverter Generator?
Inverter generator is one of the latest inventions of technology. It works in 3 simple steps.
First, it uses a battery or fuel cells to draw power from it. Then, with the help of an alternator, it converts the alternating current (AC) into direct current (DC) quite easily. Lastly, an inverter helps reverse the process by turning it into AC once again!
The current that an inverter device produces is much more stable than the conventional machines. Thus, you get the advantage of having a constant flow of current to your gadgets. Here you can check about inverter technology.
Now, let’s take a look at all the pros and cons this machine has to offer.
Benefits Of Inverter Generators
Suppose, you want to spend this vacation by going on a camping trip with your family. Once your camera runs out of its charge, you won’t be able to capture all those sweet and fun memories anymore!
To keep your electronics charged up during this kind of situation, an inverter generator comes in handy. These devices are lightweight, compact and travel-friendly all in one package. So, you can move them from one place to another quite easily.
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Since our environment is getting polluted every day, we must try to find alternatives that help restore the balance to the mother-nature.
Inverter machines are built in a way to produce less greenhouse gas than other types that are found on the market. Some of the devices follow strict protocols that allow them to produce as little emission as possible.
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Once you buy this portable device, it will end up saving a lot of your effort and money in the long run.
For starters, this machine requires only a little amount of oil to work effectively. It also needs less fuel, therefore leaves little to no residue to clean up afterward. The only maintenance it requires is to check on its battery once a year.
Since the inverter device is less powerful, some companies have come up with a clever idea to compensate for this drawback.
They have installed a parallel connection system for the smaller devices. With this particular system, you can connect two machines at the same time and double the total amount of power!
However, to make this idea work, you will have to establish the connection between two devices that belong to the same brand and model number.
Disadvantage Of Inverter Generators
Inverter machines are small, compact and also less powerful. In case a power failure occurs, it’s not strong enough to run all the activities properly. The average power of these devices varies from 1200 watts to 4000 watts on average.
Comparing Regular Generator Vs Inverter Generator
There are a lot of similarities between these two types. However, we have found significant differences in how both of these machines operate.
Without any further ado, let’s give you a quick look at the comparisons.
How you want a power-backup device to serve you?
If you don’t want to miss your favorite football match while you go camping and want something that’s compact and lightweight at the same time, then an inverter machine is a better option for you.
A conventional machine, on the other hand, is better suited for situations where you want to keep a big household up and running during a power-loss situation.
Another big advantage of a conventional model is that it doesn’t need to be refueled often. One tank of gas tends to last a lot longer than its inverter counterparts.
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We can’t help noticing the big differences between these two devices in terms of price.
The conventional devices are a lot cheaper and available in different sizes with different price tags. This option allows you to purchase a machine no matter how tight your budget is.
Inverter machines, on the other hand, are a lot more complicated in terms of their mechanism. Therefore, it requires high technology to build this type of machine, which of course, makes them a lot more expensive.
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Conventional machines require more fuel to operate. As they tend to produce more power and are larger, it takes more fuel to operate these machines.
The inverter machine produces less power comparatively and has a smaller fuel tank in general. As they automatically adjust their speed settings and avoid over-loading any devices, these machines ultimately end up conserving fuel by a great margin.
The conventional machines are built in a way to maintain a constant speed of 3600 RPM to deliver the desired electricity. This characteristic force this machine to make a lot of noise when it's in operation. Most devices tend to make 64 decibels of noise on an average.
Inverter devices work differently and adjust their speed according to their needs with the help of their microprocessors.
More importantly, they are equipped with a high-tech sound-dampening system and special mufflers to tone down the noise level. These devices produce about 54-58 decibels of sound in general cases.
Remember when we discussed how these two devices produce current?
Conventional devices only produce alternative current. The power output becomes less stable in this process and the sine wave that it produces comes out in a messy form. This might result in damaging any sensitive electronic components.
Inverter machines work in 3 steps, which involve AC to DC to AC conversation.
These phases help generate a clean electricity source for all gadgets. Meaning, when you charge your smartphone or laptop using an inverter generator, they are less likely to get damaged in comparison.
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Bottom Line – Which One To Go For?
Judging by the above-mentioned factors, I would go for an inverter device as it proves to be more beneficial in the long run. A quiet, low-maintenance and portable device seems to work best in most case scenarios.
However, if you need something with a full-on power backup, then a conventional machine is the better option. It also comes with an affordable price range and gives you the option to choose from a lot of varieties.
So, choose according to your requirements, circumstances and more importantly, your purpose for purchasing this machine.
Hopefully, this article on inverter generator Vs generator will be able to help you in selecting the right one for you.
Thanks for reading until now!