Generators are quickly becoming a must-have in homes across the country. There are more powerful storms due to climate change. That’s causing more power outages for longer periods of time.
In response to these changing times, generator sales continue to go up. Whether you need an industrial generator or one for your home or small business, you need to make sure that the power isn’t lost for days on end.
That can cost your family a lot of money in the longer the power is out. How does a generator work? Read on to find out how a generator works and so you can buy the right generator for your needs.
How Does a Generator Work?
There are many different types of generators. Some run on diesel, propane, gas, and even biofuel. These generators come in different sizes and shapes. They can be small enough to provide power to a one-bedroom house, or they can be large enough to provide power to a large hospital or industrial site.
The first thing to know about how a generator works is that it doesn’t create energy when the power goes out. When the main power grid goes out, a generator can turn fuel into electricity. It’s this process of conversion that we’ll explore.
Fuel is used to create power. This power goes through an electrical circuit to create a current. The current then travels along wires to provide electricity to your home or building.
It seems pretty simple, doesn’t it?
What lies underneath is actually very complex. Generators work based on electromagnetics. What the generator does is rely on an electromagnet to push the electric current in the proper direction. Without the electromagnetics, the electrical current could go just about anywhere.
Main Generator Components
Fuel generators are made of several major components that convert fuel to electrical energy. Here are the main parts that you need to be aware of when looking at generators.
Fuel System: Your generator needs to run on some kind of fuel in order to work. The fuel system is the starting point for your generator. The fuel system has a fuel tank, a pipe that connects to the engine, and another pipe that leads away from the engine.
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Similar to a car, a generator also has fuel filters to purify the fuel before it gets to the engine.
Engine: The engine is what powers the whole generator. The size of the engine will dictate how much power the generator can provide. Bigger engines can handle bigger buildings, while smaller generators are better for residential purposes.
Alternator: This is probably the most important part of the generator. This is where the power gets converted into electric energy. The alternator is made up of several parts that create the electromagnetic field to direct that energy to the building.
Cooling Systems: With all of that power being generated, you can bet that a lot of heat is given off. Without the cooling system, a generator would burn itself out in minutes. Instead, you have a generator that keeps things cool.
There is also an exhaust system that expels fumes from the generator. This is why you should never operate a generator in enclosed spaces or indoors.
Oil and Lubrication: Moving parts rub together and create friction. This friction creates heat and can wear down parts in a short period of time. The oil and lubrication of these parts ensure that the parts are moving freely.
As part of your maintenance plan, you need to make sure that the oil and lubrication levels are always high. Otherwise, your generator will break down sooner rather than later.
Buying the Right Generator
Now that you know how a generator works, you are better equipped to find the right generator for your needs. Do you need help figuring out how to find the best generator for you? Here are a few tips you should take into account before you start shopping.
What’s the Generator For?
Different generators are best suited for different scenarios. Some generators are better suited for camping or hunting trips. Other generators are best for emergency situations like when the power goes out.
There are others that are industrial-grade generators that work well in construction jobs.
This is one of the more important things to know about your generator. Does your generator need to be on continuous power? If so, a three phase generator would be a smart thing to have.
When you’re buying a generator, you want to check the maximum wattage rating and rated watts.
When you start the generator, it will put out a burst of power. This is the maximum number of watts the machine will put out, measured in maximum wattage.
Rated watts is the amount of power the generator can produce for a long period of time. If you try to operate the generator at the maximum wattage for a long time, the generator will fail.
You want to make sure that the wattage levels match the needs of your home or building. A generator that doesn’t have enough power won’t be able to provide power to our home. A generator that has too much power could damage your home’s electrical system.
Get the Best Generator for your Needs
How does a generator work? That’s something you want to find out before you start shopping for generators.
Once you know the inner workings of a generator, it becomes much easier to find the right one for your needs. It’s also easier to maintain because you understand how it functions to provide electricity to your home when the main grid is out.
It’s important to remember that a generator converts fuel to electricity by using electromagnetics. There are many parts to a generator; each one provides a key role in that conversion.
Are you ready for more home tips? Head over to the Home and Kitchen section of the blog for more great articles.