An electrical outage is something that every individual cannot avoid. Especially in some high-frequency blackout areas in the United States. It may happen due to natural disasters, system failure, or an infrastructure breakdown. Now that electricity is an essential part of our daily lives, losing it may cause inconvenience which is why the usage of small portable generator has become more prominent nowadays. It can be found in businesses, large industries, households, and even during our favorite outdoor activities! Small generators are very useful devices that allow us to have fun outdoors even while off the grid, and to continue leisure time in the comfort of our homes even when a sudden blackout happens. In this article, let us try to understand the types of small generators to use in different kinds of scenarios.
What is a Small Generator?
A small generator also referred to as a portable generator, is a device powered by either gas, diesel, or solar. It provides us with a temporary supply of electricity during outages. Its capacity will determine how much demand (appliances) it can take and how long it can run them. They might be smaller in size but can still be powerful enough to supply what we need.
This type of generator differs from home standby generators that have to be wired and installed permanently in your house. Small generators can easily be brought in and out and are very convenient to use. However, some of them may be hazardous, filled with fuel, and emissions may come out. If they are misused, severe damages may occur such as starting a fire or having a broken appliance which will not be beneficial to its user. To avoid such problems, the solar generator is one of the best solutions because it represents clean energy and is much safer to use which will be further discussed in this article.
What Kind of Small Generators are Available Now?
Small Diesel Generator
This type of small generator’s capacity is usually around 2.5kva to 15kva. It produces electricity by burning diesel and converts chemical energy to mechanical energy through combustion. It then uses the turbine to convert mechanical energy into electrical energy. Thus, providing a power source that is commonly used in farming and mining sites. They are also safer to use compared to petrol. Unfortunately, they are loud and might cause inconvenience due to the noise they produce.
Small Gas Generator
Portable gas generators are considered to be the most accessible type of generators as long as you have a gasoline supply available for operation. Similar to other types, it burns gas to generate electricity and its function is to provide an electricity supply during outages. It is mostly used as an emergency backup power that can be applicable to small homes.
Small Propane Generator
This type of small generator supplies electricity through the conversion of motorized power from combusting propane into energy. Once the propane is burned, it produces energy and heat. The propane generator may be a good option for those who are sensitive to smell because this type of generator doesn’t have an odor. But it only powers your appliances for a short period.
Small Solar Generator
Small Solar Generators would only require you to have enough sunlight for them to perform their job properly. Solar-powered generators use solar panels that converter clean and renewable energy from the sun which is why it does not have toxic emissions. It produces less energy compared to other types and is not best used in areas with overcast or low sunlight. This type of small generator is a combination of solar panels and batteries. Usually, it has multiple outlets that allow you to charge different devices.
Where are Small Generators Applicable?
Normally, most people would invest in generators for emergency purposes and if a blackout happens. For example, if you have medical equipment at home that needs power all the time, an electrical outage may cause problems for you as its user. Some more applications for small generators can be summarized below.
Emergency Backup Power
Electric supply is very important for all basic home appliances to work. If you live in an area where power outages frequently occur, investing in generators is the best option for you. Having a generator as an emergency backup power also means that the food inside your fridge can avoid spoilage once an outage takes place. You would not freeze in the cold because you can run an electric heater, and you will have reduced downtime at work because you’ll still have time to shut down your computer properly.
Some people are fond of outdoor adventures like camping and road trips. However, would it be possible to enjoy it even if you do not have an electricity supply? The answer is yes, and that’s the advantage of having small generators for campers! It does not require you to look for gasoline or an AC outlet to charge your devices. You need not worry about bringing your power banks to charge cellphones or how you’ll charge small appliances because an outdoor generator will do that job for you. Even running a small fridge is possible and you can also charge this generator through your car or solar panels which can keep your batteries full for later use. This may cost a bit higher than others, but the benefits are worth it.
Portable Power Supply on the Move
A good thing about small generators is that they are portable which is easily movable and carried around. These are best used to keep small appliances running, be it for indoor or outdoor use.
Working on construction sites that have limited access to electricity, portable generators can be essential. Since they are very handy, you would not need complicated wiring because it is plug-and-play, and keeping it close would suffice.
Important Tips for Having a Small Generator
One thing that needs to prioritize before buying a small generator is to understand how it works and the application it can be used for. A key to utilizing the functions of a generator is to prepare in advance. Always keep in mind that the small generator is helpful in many ways only if it’s used properly according to specifications.
The Best Small Generator for Your Needs
A good option for a small generator is Growatt VITA 550. With its 538Wh capacity and 600W output, it can supply power to your devices for a good amount of time depending on the devices’ rating. It has a battery life of 3000+ cycles that could last for up to 10 years. Furthermore, charging this generator can be done through the use of solar, a car port, or an AC socket. With its fast-charging feature, it just needs 1.6 hours to fully charge the batteries from 0% to 100%. You can also use a maximum of 11 devices simultaneously because of its various ports. Lastly, the greatest feature that this generator boasts is its portability with only 8.16 kg which is easily movable and carried around your home or any campsite.
|Growatt Solar Generator VITA 550
|538Wh Capacity & 600W Output
AC Output: 100V-120V, 60Hz, 600W
Max. 660W (Surge 1200W)
USB-A: 5V /2.4A, 12W Max
USB A-FAST Charge: 5V /2.4A, 9V /2A, 12V /1.5A, 18W Max
USB-C: 5V/9V/12V/20V, 5A, 100W Max
Car Outlet: 13.2V /10A, 132W Max
DC5521 Output: 13.2V /3A, 36W Max
Watt+ Maximum Supported Power: 1050W (Need to Use APP to Start)
Wireless Charging: 15W Max
LED Lighting: 1W
|Solar 200W: 2.5H
Wall Charging: 1.6H
Car Charging(100W): Support 12V/24V Standards
Getting a generator for your needs is one of the most important decisions to make. Without sufficient knowledge and research, you might put the money invested to waste so it’s best to consult or seek advice from an expert to walk you through your journey of living off-grid.