Investing in a back-up source of energy can be a draining experience. Why is that, you ask?
That’s because you’ll find yourself becoming a part of the debate that most consumers find themselves caught up in – inverter vs generator, which one should I buy?
If you’re in a similar situation, don’t stress out too much.
Trust us – you’re not alone in asking this question.
And, that’s why we’ve decided to put together an article that will address all your doubts.
From the difference between inverters and generators to their pros and cons – we’re here to break down all you need to know about these two power sources.
So let’s get to it!
Inverter vs Generator – Which Device Should You Invest In?
Before we discuss whether you should invest in a generator or an inverter, let’s talk about consumption.
In the U.S, the average household consumes about 11,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) annually.
Although, this number can fluctuate slightly based on location and house type, for instance, apartments in the North, use the least amount of electricity.
Also, electricity, unlike natural gas, can be used to power varied energy end uses.
That’s why you shouldn’t be surprised to learn that air conditioning, heating, water heating, lighting, refrigerators, and TVs make up for most of a household’s energy consumption.
Now, think about your own household, and all the appliances you’ll need to power with a secondary energy source like an inverter or generator.
The point we’re trying to make is that it’s a good idea to be very clear about the kind of consumption you’ll need to cover with a power generating device.
This way, no matter which device you choose to buy, you’ll successfully be able to avoid the possibility of purchasing a product that doesn’t match up to your needs.
Now that we have a good idea about the kind of power consumption, an average household requires, let’s move on to discussing the pros and cons of generators and inverters as energy options.
The Benefits and Disadvantages of Generators and Inverters
For your convenience, we’ve divided our review of generators and inverters into two parts. Each subheading contains the relevant device’s specifics in detail.
An inverter generator (IV) is a fairly recent invention, and it’s a method of generating alternating current (AC) from direct current (DC).
IVs generally draw their power from sources such as car batteries or solar panels, and as such, they’re referred to as methods of clean energy.
Some people tend to argue that inverter generators are a better option as a back-up energy source because they can produce an unvarying electrical signal.
Which supposedly makes them better at powering sensitive electronic devices such as laptops and computers.
Additionally, inverter generators aren’t very noisy, which means you won’t have to put with the loud sounds other types of generators create. Sounds pretty good so far, right?
Unfortunately, IVs aren’t a perfect energy source and have quite a few disadvantages associated with them. The foremost being a lower energy output range.
Inverters are not quite as powerful as conventional generators.
Generally, most inverters will only be capable of running a handful of appliances and aren’t suitable for folks that have a big family and more power consumption.
Another big disadvantage of IVs is the fact that they cost more.
Because inverter generators offer consumers the benefits of noiseless and clean energy, they come at a higher price.
Furthermore, they’re also costly to repair and maintain.
Generators have been around for a long time. They create electricity with the help of a motor that runs on either propane, diesel, or gasoline.
Fuel-powered generators do tend to create noise when they’re running; however, what they lack in quietness, they make up in sheer power.
They’re available in a wide variety of energy options, with some machines being able to produce a whopping 10,000 watts per hour.
Generators can be differentiated based on size and motor capacity – the larger the motor, the higher its price. Nonetheless, these popular devices are exactly what you need if your energy consumption is high.
Another advantage that fuel-run generators have over inverters is that they’re extremely cost-effective.
Not only are such devices more reasonably priced, but they’re also more reasonable to maintain.
But the reason why we prefer conventional generators is the fact that they’re able to power all types of appliances. From air conditioners to refrigerators, lights, TVs, water supply systems, etc.
Unlike inverters, generators available on the market can power up an entire household depending on their power capacity.
And, they’re fuel-efficient. For example, a 5000-watt generator will use approximately a gallon of gas every two hours at 1000-watt hourly output.
This is why, according to us, conventional generators are a better option when it comes to a back-up energy source.
Think about it, if you’re in a situation where power is disrupted, and your life has come to a standstill – would you rather have energy back up that’ll match up all your needs, or one that promises clean energy?
The answer becomes pretty simple then, doesn’t it?
But if you living off the grid, the inverter generator is the best option.
Best Generator Options for Homeowners to Consider
We respect and care about our readers, and that’s why we always aim to bring you unbiased reviews and analysis.
That is also why we extended our research and picked out three of the best generator options on the market for you to consider.
To make sure we’ve covered all our bases, we’ve picked out generators from different categories: Standby Generators, Portable Generators, and Inverter Generators (for the folks out there who’d like a cleaner footprint).
Standby Generator: Generac 7043 Home Standby Generator
If you’re on the lookout for a stand-by generator that’s big enough to power an entire household, then look no further than the Generac 7043.
Not only is the 7043 a 22kW (22,000-watt) generator, but it can also boast about being one the largest ‘air-cooled’ generators on the market.
This device can provide the power to use appliances like air conditioning, heating, lighting, and TVs, without much hassle.
However, one of the features that we like best about Generac 7043 is its True Power Technology, which reduces harmonic distortion (fluctuation) to less than 5%.
This means that you won’t have about sudden power variations damaging the more sensitive electrical appliances.
Still, want to know more? Then read on to discover 7043’s pros and cons.
- Because the generator is standby, you won’t have to go stumbling around in the dark to operate it.
- Durable and can survive winds up to 150 mph
- Comes with a 5-year limited warranty
- Made in the USA
- Operates at 67 decibels
- Price may not suit everyone
Portable Generator: Champion 7500-Watt Dual Fuel Portable Generator
The Champion 7500 is a portable powerhouse of a generator. It’s the right choice for anyone who’s looking for a generator that’ll occupy very little space.
Additionally, it comes equipped with a wheel kit, which means portability is not a problem either.
This dual-fuel generator also offers users the convenience of an electric start. However, one of the 7500’s best features is its two fuel options.
This generator can run on gasoline and propane. It’ll give you 7500 running water on gasoline and 6750 running watts on propane.
While the generator won’t be able to power-up your entire household, it’ll still manage to cover most of the necessary electric appliances like refrigerators, microwaves, lights, PC, WiFi Router, etc.
The generator also has multiple outlets – one 240-volt outlet and four 120-volt outlets.
Aside from all this, it also comes equipped with a power surge protector that avoids overloads and protects your electrical appliances.
Here’s what else the Champion 7500 includes:
- Non-stop 8-hour runtime
- 3-year limited warranty and free lifetime technical support
- Includes Cast-Iron Sleeve for durability
- Safety Fuel Selector Switch
- Operates at 74 decibels
- Power changes with fuel selection
Inverter Generator: Honda EG2800i 2800W Portable Inverter Gas Generator
Those of us who’re familiar with Honda’s appliances, know that there’s no such thing as an inexpensive Honda product.
However, in this instance, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know that the Honda EG2800i inverter generator is very reasonably priced – according to its specifications.
Not only does it provide a quiet and clean energy supply, but it can also operate several electrical appliances such as TVs, fans, lights, and computers.
It also includes the following features:
- Wheels and folding handle for extra portability
- Easy to operate and install
- Suitable for camping trips, etc.
- Not suitable for households with heavy power consumption
- Runs at 69 decibels
Inverter VS Generator – Which Is Best For Home?
So, there we have it, guys – we’re at the end of our discussion, and hopefully, you’re all the wiser as far as the inverter vs. generator debate is concerned.
The most important aspect of buying an inverter or a generator is – your needs. The generators are essential to survive during bad times like natural disasters and power outages.
If you feel more comfortable about investing in an inverter generator, go ahead. But, be very thorough in your research before you head out to buy the device.
Apart from that, you’re all set to go out and conquer the world. Or, you know, shop for generators.
Till next time. Happy shopping!
Hey there, my name is Joe and I am the person behind this website. I am an electrical engineer and I created this site to share my knowledge of the generator. I hope this will help you. Read more about me.