The quick guide to generator types
Generators come in a variety of sizes and each type is designed for different uses. From small, portable inverter sets ideal for camping or motorhomes, right through to the containerised generators you see in industrial and critical settings such as hospitals, we break down what each type is used for.
The inverter generator converts DC power into AC power with high frequency, eliminating power fluctuations, making them ideal for powering sensitive technology such as computers. Because these small units are lightweight and can be carried or wheeled, they are ideal for camping or motorhome usage. It depends on the output of the specific generator but normally they can create enough power to plug in a TV or boil a kettle.
For those looking for more power on the move, the next step is a framed petrol generator. These weigh in at around 40-150kg so if you need to move these generators frequently it is advisable to have wheel kits fitted. Depending on the specific output you might expect to power several appliances at the same time, such as a fan heater, a TV, and a microwave. Some generators of this type may be available as a silent, housed type built inside a metal casing.
At the smaller end of a diesel generator range you will find sets suitable for standby power in residential or small business settings. These generators are ideal for those who have a home or business in an area prone to blackouts or natural events such as flooding. As always, it depends on the specific kVA output, but you might expect these generators to power your lights and home appliances during an outage. As the generator output increases you may want to consider choosing a silent type housed inside a canopy for the comfort of your neighbours.
The range of outputs available for prime and standby generators is vast, ranging from around 10kVA right up to industrial sized sets at 250kVA and above. These generators are generally used for business premises and small industrial units. Prime describes a generator that acts as the primary power source for an application without using the grid and can be run 24/7 at near to their maximum load. A standby generator acts as a backup power source in the event of a power cut. These sets are often built onto skids with forklift pockets at the bottom and top access crane lifting points on the top for ease of moving.
Once the output reaches 250kVA the generators will usually be classed as industrial sets suitable for agricultural, manufacturing, and heavy industrial applications. The sets are designed to be easy to lift and install. They are manufactured to perform at optimum performance as quietly as possible.
At around 800kVA the generator is large enough to require housing inside a shipping container. Containers range from 20ft - 40ft depending on the output of the generator. All containerised sets are CSC plated which allows us to ship them anywhere in world.
More commonly seen in regions where the conditions are dry, open sets are simply the bare bones of the generator without the canopy covering it. This means that the generator is much louder than a canopied or containerised set and they still need to be protected from elements. The open option makes these generator sets a more competitive price.
At GFE Power Products we have over 100 years combined experience in the engine and generator industry and pride ourselves on supplying the correct piece of equipment every time. We are on hand to discuss your requirements and guide each customer towards the right choice for their specific needs.