If you want to secure your home from power failures and/or live off the grid, you need to have the tools to be prepared for power failures. To solve the issue of backup electricity, you have to choose an adequate generator that suits your specific circumstances. Certain generators that are ideal for homes may not work for homes and apartment condos. The key to successfully handling emergencies is to find out exactly what tools you need.  Hence – comparisons help.

The Main Difference Between Traditional and Inverter Generators

Traditional generators and inverter generators are some of the most popular generator types. How do traditional and invertors generators compare in terms of performance, price, noise levels, etc? Which one is the right one for your home? We’re going to analyze the critical differences between these generators and help you derive a conclusion.

Traditional Vs Inverter Generators: Introduction

Conventional/traditional generators and inverter generators are not the same – despite sharing a lot of common functionality. Due to the similar ways they operate, people tend to confuse them for one another. Below we’re going to look over the main differences in performance and features to help you decide which one is the optimal solution for your situation.

Traditional Vs. Inverter Generators: PRICE

The main difference between traditional and inverter generators is that inverter generators are more expensive. The cheapest generator option is portable traditional generators – especially if you need a lot of power to get the job done. Inverter generators are the “new generation” of generators and they are optimized to work with the latest technology in modern homes. Inverter generators also tend to have small performance upgrades like quiet operation and better fuel efficiency. This makes them more expensive to purchase. Traditional generators are quite simple and haven’t changed much in the last decades.

  •         WINNER: Traditional generators.




Traditional Vs. Inverter Generators: MECHANICS

How do both of these processes the electricity and what are the differences in the inner functionality? If we analyze the technical differences, the biggest distinction is that conventional generators only produce AC electricity. The newer generation of inverter generators produces AC, DC, and then AC electricity again. This is why they’re known as 3-phase inverters. The process of obtaining current is more energy-efficient on inverter generators and it produces clean energy.

Due to the lack of harmonic distortion in inverter generators, the electricity generated by it is suitable for electronics such as laptops and smartphones. Conventional generators are not as smooth when it comes to electric production and this may lead to damage in certain cases. Even though traditional generators are reliable, inverter generators are superior for reducing damage caused by harmonic distortion.

  •         WINNER: Inverter generators.

The Main Difference Between Traditional and Inverter Generators - inverter generator

Traditional Vs. Inverter Generators: WATTAGE

Which one of these generators is more powerful? Conventional generators tend to be larger and this gives them much greater power than inverter generators. Despite the greater efficiency of newer-generation inverters, traditional generators tend to have a much bigger fuel tank and the capability to produce more power. For comparison, the average traditional generator has a capacity of over 10,000W while an inverter generator can only generate between 1000-4000W. Traditional generators are 2-3 times more powerful on average.

Inverter generators hold an advantage in terms of fuel efficiency because their engines are designed in a way that the load can be adjusted – this allows for smaller fuel tanks. They require less fuel to run, so the fuel tank is smaller as a result. The bottom line here is that inverter generators are more fuel-efficient but due to their small fuel tanks, they fail to produce as much power as traditional generators.

  •         WINNER: Traditional generators.

Traditional Vs. Inverter Generators: PORTABILITY

Inverter generators are seen as far more portable than traditional generators according to the Generator Guide. The average traditional generator weighs over 100 lbs. while an inverter general can weigh as little as 40 lbs. This also ties into the fuel tank and the amount of power a generator is capable of producing. Due to their smaller size, inverter generators are seen as more portable. Conventional generators have a large fuel tank and engine which are required to power the machine. This makes them less effective for portability if you want to move them to a different place. Many inverter generators can be carried by hand while traditional generators have wheels and handles attached to them – otherwise they can barely be moved.

  •         WINNER: Inverter generators.

Traditional Vs. Inverter Generators: NOISE LEVELS

Which one of the two runs quietly and efficiently? Invertors generators certainly hold an edge there. In fact, traditional generators are well-known to produce loud noises when they operate. This has to do with the inner mechanics of traditional generators. Traditional generators change the RPM when they run, and these fluctuations cause noise.

Inverter generators function at a steady RPM which makes them quieter. Even the newest traditional generators that have noise-minimizing technology tend to make noise. You can compare generators’ noise levels by paying attention to the decibel ratings. Most inverter generators cap out at 55 decibels while conventional generators produce at least 65 decibels.

  •         WINNER: Inverter generators.

Traditional Vs. Inverter Generators: ENVIROMENTAL POLLUTION

Which generator is superior in terms of emissions and effects on the environment? There is actually legal legislation imposed by individual states that regulates the generator’s maximum emissions. You have to abide by these regulations if you intend to live in the woods/off the grid. Make sure the generator you purchase is EPA compliant.

As you may guess, inverter generators tend to generate less power in total which means their emissions are lower. Most inverter generators will be environmentally-compliant with state laws while you have to check the maximums imposed by your state and make sure they match up the emissions’ ratings on your traditional generator.

  •         WINNER: Inverter generators.