All You Need to Know About Power Generators

Sunday, February 6, 2022

If you live in an area that faces many power outages, you may be thinking about getting a power generator which can supply power to your home automatically. Before you choose one from the power generators as portable generators you've been eyeing, it’s good to get an idea of what different power generators can do. Below, we’ve put together a short introductory guide to power generators for your convenience.

What Is a Power Generator?

The easiest way to think of power generators is to imagine small power plants which can generate electricity on demand. It's typically sought after by people who want backup power for their home. It can generate electricity as a complement to power derived from the electric grid, or as a backup in the case of a blackout. The installation of a home generator such as propane generators involves connecting it to the main electrical panel, allowing it to power all electrical circuits when needed. To do this, a transfer switch is required. The transfer switch keeps generator electricity travelling into the power lines, preventing the risk of an electric shock. Transfer switches sometimes work automatically and sometimes need to be powered manually.

How Does a Power Generator Work?

Power generators burn fuel in order to create mechanical energy, which is then converted into electrical energy. Generators can be used to power a number of things. This is done through the combined efforts of a combustion engine and an alternator. Of course, an entire home backup generator requires fuel to operate in order to work automatically. Generator power can come in the form of natural gas, diesel, gasoline, propane, or even biofuel, depending on the unit. When fuel and air come into contact, it creates a small explosion, which is also called combustion, an essential catalyst for electricity generation. When there is an electrical outage and generators sense it, it powers your entire home automatically within a few seconds.

Components of a Power Generator

In order to operate properly, a generator needs the following components:

  • A fuel system, which ensures a steady supply from a filter or tank.
  • A voltage regulator, which ensures that the right voltage is maintained.
  • A cooling system to prevent overheating. This can be done through water or air.
  • The exhaust system is responsible for removing hot and potentially dangerous combustion gases.
  • An oil system which provides lubrication to keep everything running smoothly.
  • A battery with a charging mechanism.

Some parts of generators must be manually activated, so make sure to check the specifications before confirming which one you want to buy. The better the quality of its components, the richer a generator’s resources and the better its performance is likely to be.

How a Power Generator Is Fueled?

All power generators have an engine, and this engine might be run by one of many types of fuel. Diesel generators make use of diesel, which power compression-ignition engines. Diesel engines tend to be relatively more durable thanks to their simple ignition mechanism. They're also more efficient. Gasoline engines work a bit differently, injecting fuel and air into their cylinders simultaneously. Gasoline engines tend to offer similar levels of efficiency, but are cheaper, easier to refuel, and decidedly more lightweight. Then there are liquid propane engines, which are similar to gasoline engines in that it also has a spark-ignition mechanism. Liquid propane is preferred by many due to its longevity and the greater ease of storing it; unlike diesel and gasoline, it doesn't go bad if left for many years. It's also more difficult to spill propane, which further enhances its relative ease of use. A close match to the propane engine is the one powered by natural gas. A home backup generator run by natural gas also requires spark plugs. Natural gas generators are more suitable for commercial or industrial uses as they require a supply of natural gas.

Final Words

For many people, a home backup generator is one of the most essential items to own, be it for work or play. The convenience of backup generator power is undeniable, considering our dependence on technology. So even in the event of a power outage, you can continue to use your essential items in peace. Power generators can also provide electricity in places outside your home's electrical system. They can also come in handy when you’re hosting parties or BBQs, or if you like outdoor camping. No matter if it's for work or home, we hope our guide has been useful!

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