Do you own a big business or a facility such as a manufacturing unit, a healthcare unit, or a warehouse that needs a steady supply of electricity 24x7 to function at full capacity? 

Well, in that case, you must be dreading the oncoming of the next blackout or permanent faults! In fact, you may also be worried about extended brownouts that might harm your machinery and appliances. 

Such events can not only halt or delay crucial work and adversely impact your revenues but in cases of extreme weather conditions can also prove to be hazardous for your employees and your products. Of course, the worst hit in case of power outages are patients admitted to a medical facility, or those undergoing medical or surgical procedures! 

Thankfully, we live in a day and age, where all the inconveniences – both major and minor, caused as a result of power cuts or grid failure can be taken care of with ease! All you need is a reliable industrial generator. 

The Role of an Industrial Generator

As you may know, a generator essentially works by converting the fuel supply into electrical energy. Depending on its size and type of fuel, the generator can prove to be a reliable backup power source for a business establishment for up to 3 weeks at a stretch. Of course, most businesses need backup power for a few hours or a couple of days at max, but even if the situation worsens, the generator can help keep the business up and running. 

How to Select the Best Industrial Generator for Your Business

In order to make an informed decision regarding the purchase of an industrial generator, it is imperative that you know about some of the most important aspects of the generator including the types and the ideal size. So, let’s tackle all these aspects one after another, and empower you to make the final call! 

  1. Types of Generators
  • Portable Generators

Portable generators prove to be ideal for powering up various tools and appliances on the site. A vast majority of portable generators are gasoline-powered. However, if you need it, there are some portable generators that rely on diesel as their primary source of fuel. Then again, you can also find hybrid portable generators that run on gasoline/liquid propane. 

More often than not, portable generators prove to be perfect for 120- or 240-volt applications and offer an average run time of 10-15 hours. Under ideal conditions, however, the generator can run for up to 32 hours. 

Portable generators are specially built to withstand extreme weather conditions, and in most cases, can be used without the need for sturdy generator enclosures. 

  • Standby Generators 

Standby generators are the go-to generator choice when more reliable and longer-lasting backup power is required – making them ideal for commercial and industrial uses. Standby generators usually operate on diesel, gasoline, liquid propane, or natural gas. 

As the name suggests, standby generators are permanently installed and are not portable. Moreover, these generators ought to be placed inside a generator enclosure for better upkeep and increased durability. 

In a vast majority of cases, standby generators function with the help of a transfer switch that enables the backup power supply to come into action, in the event of a power outage in a facility. While single-phase generators can power residential and commercial setups, when it comes to industrial establishments three-phase standby generators are required.  

  1. Generator Fuel

Yet another aspect that needs your careful consideration is the choice of fuel. 

Most industries rely on diesel generators for the simple reason that these generators require a lower upfront cost. Moreover, when it comes to fuel efficiency diesel generators stand unmatched. Right from relatively quieter operations to lower maintenance needs, from longer runtime to enhanced safety, diesel generators offer numerous benefits.

Gasoline generators can also be considered for industrial setups, however, their low fuel efficiency combined with high maintenance needs render them less useful. One of the most detrimental factors in the use of gasoline generators is their relatively shorter lifespan. 

Natural gas generators are fast becoming the go-to choice for many industries owing to their hassle-free installation and high fuel efficiency. One of the most sought-after benefits of using natural gas generators is that they can be connected directly to the local gas line. Hence, businesses are not burdened with the hassles of storing fuel on-site. While a little expensive to begin with, their lower maintenance needs and overall ease of use make them comparable to diesel generators. 

  1. Generator Maintenance 

While simple checks such as that for oil, battery, coolant levels, belts, and spark plugs can be easily managed by on-site staff, when it comes to more complex tasks such as inspection and servicing of a transfer switch, changing carburetor or spark plugs, etc. a qualified technician is the best bet. Before purchasing the generator, it is important that you take into consideration the maintenance required by the generator, and if your industry is in an area that can be conveniently visited by a technician – if and when required. 

Of course, if you buy a name-brand generator, the maintenance needs for the generator will be significantly lower than if you buy a generic brand. 

  1. Generator Size

In the case of an industrial generator, it is strongly recommended that you opt for a three-phase generator. Next, depending on the backup power requirements of your industrial set up you can opt for a generator ranging from a base output of 50kW to as high as 3 megawatts. 

In case yours is an industry where you need an uninterrupted power supply at all hours of the day, without fail, then it is best that you opt for a generator size that is bigger than your setup requires. While it will add to the upfront cost of the generator, this move will prove its worth when the backup power need is severe and you can conveniently rely on your generator for the same. 

Just in case, this task feels too cumbersome, you can always seek the assistance of a dealer in your area for sizing the generator. A simple on-site visit and some calculations later, the expert will let you know the precise capacity of the generator you should be looking for.  

  1. Modular capability

This is another aspect that is exceptionally important, especially if you are planning on expanding or diversifying your business anytime soon. You must try and opt for a generator that has the modular capability to be paired with one or more generators in the future to form a modular power setup. Knowing about the big and small details in this respect can come in handy when you need to add additional backup power for your setup. 

We hope that you are now well aware of the various aspects of industrial diesel generators. If the investment in these generators seems unviable, you can always purchase a new or used industrial generator that will offer you all the benefits at half the cost. Of course, when you do so, make sure you opt for a trusted dealer like PowerGen Enterprises, which provides you with a wide array of services, including sizing, shipping, installation, and more. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Industrial Generators

  1. How do I size an industrial generator?

In order to size an industrial generator, you need to do the following calculations. 

  • Full load kW = Total amps x supply voltage / 1,000.
  • Reserve capacity = Full load kW x 0.25.

For 100 percent power, generator size = Full load kW + reserve capacity.

  1. How many hours should a generator run before servicing?

It is recommended that you get a full inspection and servicing of your industrial generator after every 400 hours of running time, or at every 6-month mark, whichever comes first. 

  1. How often should generator oil be changed?

This largely depends on the manufacturer’s instruction, and on the cleanliness with which the generator is capable of burning the fuel. For instance, older generator models may need an oil change after every 250 hours of operation, while more advanced, newer models may need an oil change after every 300 hours of operation.