Selecting the right portable generator

Selecting the right portable generator

The right portable generator can have a big impact on performance, reliability, serviceability and the residual value of your asset, but I see a lot of people fail to take the time to make sure they match the right generator to their needs.

Selecting a portable generator is simple if you have the right information. Not doing your homework can cost you, with most technical and maintenance issues caused by selecting the wrong one. The main area where you need to do your homework is in determining the exact role you need your generator to perform.

Do you want it as a back-up in case of emergencies? Or as the primary source of power? How mobile do you need your generator to be, or can it be fixed in one place?

Once you have answered these questions about your needs for a portable generator, there are three different types for you to investigate; standby, prime fixed and prime mobile.

Standby Generator

A standby generator application is used when a mains power already exists and a generator is required to act only as back-up if there is a blackout. Subsequently, the generator will usually only run a handful of hours per year, if at all.

I tell my clients they should select a standby generator based on the quality of the brand, price, availability of parts and access to a local service agent.

Prime Fixed Generator

A prime fixed generator is used when the generator is the primary source of power and the generator will remain in one location for most of its life.

In any prime (running) application, most of the cost of owning or renting a generator is fuel.

The quality of the brand, size, fuel efficiency of the engine and access to parts and service is critical for prime fixed generators.

It is essential to consult a generator specialist to assist you in selecting this type of generator. This is because a good tip to save some costs is selecting a machine with a cheaper frame or canopy,as the machine will not be moved around.

Prime Mobile Generator

A prime mobile generator is used when the generator is the sole source of power but it will also be moved from site to site on a regular basis.

Prime mobile generators are commonly used by construction and rental companies. Quality of the brand, size and fuel efficiency of the engine is key to saving costs.A robust build and canopy design is essential for the longevity of prime fixed mobile generators.

Access to quality technical support and careful selection can significantly increase the lifespan of all portable generators.

Portable generators are made up of a fixed speed diesel engine spinning an alternator(generator) at 1500 rpm. The alternator is configured to produce the type and voltage of electricity required. Once you have determined what role you need your generator to perform and what type of generator is best suited to fulfil that role, businesses like Redstar Equipment are able to provide an option to meet that purpose.

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