Compare a Gas and Diesel Electric Generator

July 8, 2011
Benefits and Disadvantages of Different Types of Power Generators
Every power generator is not ideal in every situation. If you’re using a portable generator, you’ll need one that’s either gas, propane or diesel-fuel powered. A propane generator can also be used as a standby generator and hook directly into a large stationary propane tank. The other type of power generator is a natural gas-powered generator. This is a standby generator that will hook directly into your natural gas lines at your business and be used as a backup in case of electric failure.
Natural gas and propane generators present some risk because of their connection to those fuel lines. Because of that, they typically have several safety features installed like automatic shutdowns in case of overheating, high oil pressure or other problems, to prevent fires and explosions.
Gasoline and diesel-powered generators are the other two types that are available in both portable generators or for use as an industrial generator. A gas generator isn’t a good option as a standby generator, but a diesel-powered generator can be. Each has certain advantages and disadvantages in certain situations.
Benefits of a Gas Generator
Gas generators generally cost less than diesel models. They’re often more lightweight because they offer less power. The engines are larger but the other components usually are a bit less heavy. Gas generators are a good choice for small applications and for highly portable uses. Because gas is so readily available, the fuel is easy to come by. Gas, by the gallon, is usually cheaper than diesel fuel. Gas engines typically run more quietly than diesel engines.
Benefits of a Diesel Generator
Diesel generators are also powered by readily available fuel. Diesel is often more expensive than gasoline but because diesel engines use much less fuel, diesel is actually a more cost-effective choice. Diesel engines don’t use sparkplugs. That means not only will you be able to start the engine without worrying about worn sparkplugs, but there is no spark which means there’s less risk of fire and explosion than with a gas combustion engine.
Diesel fuel burns cleaner than gasoline and is less flammable. It doesn’t evaporate as quickly, either. So if your generator is going to be used infrequently, diesel fuel is a better choice because there will be less evaporation between uses, and storing the fuel means less risk of fire or explosion than with a petrol generator.
Main Differences Between Gas and Diesel
For business uses, diesel generators are usually the better choice. Not only will you find a cost savings in the fuel, but diesel engines break down less often and require less cleaning and maintenance than any other type of fuel-powered engine. Purchasing diesel generators that offer huge amounts of wattage gives you the option of using them for more applications than you originally planned. If you buy a gas-powered generator that can’t handle that kind of wattage, it’s not safe to use because an overloaded generator poses a great risk of fire or explosion.
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